The danger of false optimism, the shadow side of the Future thinking style
Full disclosure. I am a born optimist.
We’re usually quite taken by people who can display optimism in the face of adversity. And yet, today I read on the home page of CNN, “US hits a grim new record as Trump clings to optimism”.
Why is Trump being such a chump when it comes to managing his thoughts and words? Does he not understand his own thinking, and that the ability to intervene in one’s own thinking is the very definition of maturity?
(CNN)Dr. Anthony Fauci said that President Donald Trump was giving an “aspirational projection to give people some hope” when he floated reopening US businesses and getting Americans back to work by Easter, April 12.
Or, does he have reason to be optimistic, other than he is as remote from any suffering as one can possibly be? Maybe, this is a strategy designed to drive markets and hide grim realities from a public that has traditionally relied on optimistic rhetoric to overcome psychologically induced market crashes?
The problem here is that this virus is not psychologically induced. It won’t just go away because we all decide to have a happy optimistic day. It is very real and to billions, the scariest unseen enemy they can ever imagine.
If you are reading this you may well have already learnt about MindTime, the psychological framework of thinking. MindTime shows us that it is the Future psychological perspective that drives optimism. That seems relatively intuitive. However, what is perhaps less intuitive, and certainly less obvious to most people, is the fact that false optimism is what sales people employ when they want you to do something that you’re not likely to do on your own.
“Don’t worry about the plummeting markets. It just means there is a lot of money to be made when they bounce back.”
“Hmm, really? OK. What happens if they don’t bounce back?”
“Have they ever not? Even after the great depression they came back. We’ve just had the greatest bull run in . . . .” You get the picture.
Humankind has been described as the only species that deceives through the manipulation of thoughts. We need to know more about our own thinking and what makes us either such suckers or such manipulators. Because, we all are capable of using the shadow side of our thinking style and we can only know what that looks like if we take the time to develop a better understanding.