How do I overcome pessimism?
Q: I am 27 years old and have started to realise that I am a very pessimistic person. I have always taken life in a negative way, and so could never understand. However, now I am trying to understand things and be positive, but my previous incidents are still haunting me, which lead me to depression. What should I do? Even now when I try to think positive, my old mentality presses me to think negative. Is it normal or will it take me time to change myself?
A:Negative thinking patterns are resistant to change. Most people usually do not have the insight that their negative thoughts are responsible for their distress. I am glad to note that you are taking responsibility and willing to change what you find unhelpful. Given any situation, there is almost always, more than one way to view it. Try to focus on possible rational explanations. If you find it hard to think along rational lines, try talking to someone whom you can trust. Through talking you may be able to understand your reactions clearly and it this will also offer the person an opportunity to give some objective feedback. This approach may help you further in your efforts. So keep the effort going and the thinking patterns will change. However, if you feel this is not happening, then please consult a mental health professional who can help you.