Dealing with a Pessimist

A pessimist is, “a person who habitually sees or anticipates the worst or is disposed to be gloomy”. (www.dictionary.com/browse/pessimist)

Dealing with a pessimist is hard. They are always so negative, they always complain, and they think everyone in the world is out to get them. They think they have the worst possible luck on this planet, and it is just exhausting trying to keep up with them.

Someone very dear to my heart is a huge pessimist. He is always sad, or angry, and always blames everything and everyone for his misfortune. He is never the type to stop for a second and think maybe his actions led him here, or that maybe if he did something different in his life things would look brighter.

He is a kindhearted human, with such a sweet, yet damaged soul, and it breaks my heart seeing him so negative.

First and for most, when dealing with a pessimist, you need to make it clear to them that you will always be there for them. You should regularly ask about them, even if they don’t ask about you.

My sweet yet negative friend only asks about me when he needs something. That never bothers me because that’s what I’m here for. However, I will text him or give him a call every now and then to see how he is doing and how things are going.

Second, you should always have a positive attitude when speaking to them. Always have a cheerful tone of voice, and be supportive to anything they say. Pessimist are not looking for a solution, they are looking for someone to listen.

When my dear friend starts complaining, I always listen to everything he has to say and ask questions about his situation to try and understand his perspective more. Many times I use his words and situation and talk about the bright side of things. Sometimes, I make fun of his situation but in a sensitive way. I make him laugh at himself and he understands that he is just overreacting.

When talking to your pessimist friend, don’t just make the conversation about them. Even if they don’t ask you, you should speak about yourself. Tell them whats going in your life, and talk about things you might be going through.

I talk to my friend about different events happening around town. I tell him about whats been happening in my life and how I’ve been spending my days. I talk about things I know he’ll like, too. For instants, new movies that came out, a new episode of a show we watch, or even a new song or album but one of his favorite artists/bands. Even if he doesn’t ask, I tell him whats been happening with our friends, or family members. I always try and make him feel like he is apart of my life and a part of our friends circle.

Pessimist are very hard on themselves. Some of them think they are not smart, or worthy, or good enough for anything in life. A lot of them keep their circle very small because they think they might be overwhelming for other people. They also think that most people judge them and it makes them want to stay at home and not be social. That is why it is important to include your pessimist friend in outings and different things you do. Make them feel welcome.

Being realistic with your pessimist friend is crucial. Do not lie to them about what you think or how you feel. You don’t want to be rude, but at the same time you don’t want to just sugarcoat everything. You want your friend to eventually get out of this stage in their life. You want them to realize that good and bad things happen to everyone and that they cannot just concentrate on the bad. They have to keep track of the good, and realize that many times in life they have to pick themselves up and be their own number one supporter and motivator.

Most importantly, what I find, is never compare your pessimist friends issues, or situations to anyone or anything else. They will just hate it when they are being compared to starving kids in Africa, or war torn countries in the middle east.

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