February 26, 2013
“Social science suggest that we are more optimistic than realistic” (Sharot Pg 41). Optimism bias is defined as the future being better than the past are present. In “The Optimism Bias,” an article published by TIME magazine, Tali Sharot explores the world of optimism. Problems tend to surround us no matter where we are. It doesn’t matter where we are from, problems like war, economy, and personal problems are un-escapable. With so much going on in today’s society, It is hard for us to think optimistically. We then grow pessimistic, which tends to lead to depression. Feelings of depression and optimism have been proven to be neurologic, but when did we begin to feel this way? Studies support the theory that if we weren’t optimistic than we could still be in caves behaving like Neanderthals. Optimism is looked at as a big reason why we have evolved. If we had no concept of a bright future why would we try to improve ourselves? Optimism is what gives us hope, and we get much inspiration and motivation from optimism. When we use optimism, even the worse events seem to have an up-side. An optimistic person has the ability to take an event, for better or worse, and turn it into a blessing in disguise. Optimism is generally positive behavior. “Research shows that we use less time dwelling on negative outcomes than positive ones” (Sharot Pg 43). Optimism has been described as “mental time travel,” allowing us to plan for the future. We put more effort in the present so that our future will be bright like we imagined it. This could also be looked at as goal setting. If your goals are looked at in a negative fashion, then the outcome may be shaped in a negative way. Your attitude determines how you view a situation. When a person is depressed they have the opposite effect as optimism, they see the future as being worse than it actually is. Research shows that when a person is making a decision, no...