In our optimism about a new relationship, we often find ourselves disappointed when the other person is human, flawed and doesn’t live up to our ideal. For this reason, it may help to bring a little pessimism into the picture.
As the video explains, it’s natural to go into a relationship with a high set of expectations. Whether we realise it or not, we’re optimistic that the other person will intuitively understand us and most aspects of our personality and habits. That optimism isn’t really realistic, though, and inevitably, the problems start.
If we can embrace a bit of pessimism, without a specific set of expectations, we won’t be disappointed when we realise the other person isn’t perfect. Here’s how The School of Life puts it:
A solution to our distress and agitation, therefore, lies in a curious area with a philosophy of pessimism…the idea that it’s normal and largely unavoidable that people don’t understand one another very well in a couple each person’s mind is a hugely complex and convoluted place. It’s hard to grasp exactly why someone acts as they do and by extension would be assuming from the start that no partner is going to have a complete reliable or terribly accurate understanding of us.
It sounds, well, pessimistic. It’s also realistic, though. Most people don’t completely get each other right off the bat, and even the closest relationships aren’t perfect. As the video explains, “The only people we can think of as normal are those we don’t yet know very well.”
Of course, some people are just jerks, and you shouldn’t stay in a relationship with someone who has abusive tendencies (and they have a video on that, too). Chances are, though, if you have a habit of being overly optimistic going into a relationship, you’ll be able to relate well to the video. Check it out above or at the link below.
Pessimism for Lovers [The School of Life (YouTube)]