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Thursday, April 28, 2005

The worry that wasn't there

My life is stressful at the moment, but it need not be. I am just worried about what might be without looking at what is. A wise person (Dad) once told me that fear & pessimism are a form of cowardice. I didn't agree at the time, but in retrospect I understand and can see the logic.

A pessimist will plan for every single 'worst case' scenario in a situation and in doing so feel that he is cushioning himself from the blows that may be coming, this is similar to the behaviour of a quivering lap dog, nervously flinching at every noise and finding comfort only in the arms of it's owner. An optimist, however, will accept the risks in life, live each day as it comes and turn any crisis into an opportunity.

The pessimist will feel he is bravely marching down a rocky path with all the risk and danger that involves. An optimist will know that the path is as smooth as you make it and is truly the braver of the two.

Although it is often passed off as a Nursery Rhyme, I feel that Hughes Mearns is saying a great deal more about the ridiculousness side of human fears in "The Little Man Who Wasn't There"

As I was walking up the stair
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today.
I wish, I wish he'd stay away. *

I am going to make a concerted effort to see the glass as being half full, rather than half full of green stinking carcinogenic chemical sludge. Because when I am optimistic I am happy and when I am happy Ripley laughs at me (tenuous link to keep this posting on-topic)

*This quote is 100% correct. The internet has a habit of getting things wrong, other people on the internet have a habit of then copying wrong information 50 million times. Take my word for it. I researched this and can say with little doubt that you are reading the correct version of the text :)


At 2:49 PM, Blogger B said...

Found your blog because I just saw "Identity" last night and couldn't get that poem out of my head. I'm glad you have the correct version here.

I like what you say about pessimism and optimism. As a relatively new parent myself (and a chronic pessimist) they are words to take to heart.

Glad I stumbled on by.

At 5:48 AM, Blogger Cassie said...

Ooh, I love that poem. I had never heard it before. As a confirmed pessimist I take it to heart.


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