Tag: Pessimism


Ambition, Anticipation and Iran: Our Week in Wisdom

On The Wisdom Daily this week (July 6-10), we discussed tips for being true to yourself when professional pressure intensifies, the upside to anticipating negative outcomes, the bright future of Judaism in the United States despite a less religious populace and the process of furthering Middle East peace. Did you grow wiser this week? We hope The Wisdom Daily played a part.   Authenticity and Ambition: Four Steps to Nurturing Both – Naomi Telushkin Experiencing the world’s most famous film festival was as intense as I’d anticipated when I went to Cannes.......

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How Negative Thinking Can Boost Problem-Solving

The New York Times website recently featured a very short puzzle to help you assess how good you are at solving puzzles. It’s simple: Type in three numbers, and see if those numbers obey a certain rule. Some sequences will obey the rule, and some won’t. What’s the rule? Interestingly, if you try the game, you’ll almost always get the response, “Yes!” (Yes, your numbers follow the rule.) But when you try to guess what the rule is, you’ll probably be wrong. Why? Because we almost always start with, “Here’s my idea,......

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Can Complainers Be Cured?

About ten years ago I was in a taxi with Elliot, the calmest of my five younger brothers. Traffic was at a standstill, and I was complaining about how late I was going to be for a meeting, and how impossible it was to get around in New York City. Elliot turned to me, and said something that’s become one of the most usable pieces of wisdom I’ve ever received: “Relax. It doesn’t pay to complain about what you can’t control.” Complaining without doing anything is often a security blanket used to......

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Do Pessimists Live Longer?

What do you say when you look at your life? Is your glass half-full, or half-empty? Your life, or at least your longevity, may depend on your answer. Recent studies bucking the trend toward “positive psychology,” and the science of being happier, indicate that pessimism – not optimism – may actually contribute to living a longer life. Of course, the pessimists among us will doubt these findings, which ironically may make these promises more likely to come true! Before all you pessimists start celebrating, though (itself a funny image, a celebration of......

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Overcoming Pessimism - How Do Things Get Better?

Rabbi Irwin Kula speaks with Rev. Welton Gaddy about how to break out of a pessimistic mindset, and why we are morally obligated to do so. Kula says that “when we get scared and fearful and sad and depressed, take a little perspective – I mean, that’s why we need sabbaths, I don’t mean the Sabbath of a literal Sabbath necessarily of any faith tradition, but a sabbath as a moment of saying, ‘The whole of creation is a hell of a gift, and we’ve been evolving, and as difficult as life......

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