Too often in the personal, professional life and particularly when we define attitude it’s more likely the needle of the world tilts more towards optimism and it is perceived or at least projected that optimistic people are more valuable than pessimistic people. As a person who doesn’t always like to accept things as it is and challenge the “status quo” I always ask to myself am I not pessimistic when I ask questions in the common forum/meetings why do you think it should happen this way?
Challenging the status quo is the “mother of invention”. In fact it’s the ability to see or even think beyond the most probable situations keeping the past trend aside. If we start thinking from this angle and relate to the quote “Both optimists and pessimists contribute to society. The optimist invents the aeroplane, the pessimist the parachute” it will give more deeper insights. More often it may look like optimists are more valuable as the probability for the need of a parachute is less .It may also look like the value of the optimists shall be higher than the pessimists. I started thinking how would have been the first thought in inventing anything .Lets take aeroplane as an example and these are the possible few thoughts…. (Of course many)
- Why we cannot fly? (Optimistic)
- Why we should fly? (Pessimistic )
- What if we fly? (Optimistic )
- What if we fly and crash? (Pessimistic)
I started analysing these thoughts and I see an optimistic thought and pessimistic thought both lead to the trigger of invention .In fact I started to probe more and see Q1 and Q2 are optimistic but emotional /dreamy pattern of thoughts .But if we probe more Q3 and Q4 are rational /risk mitigating /problem solving/solution oriented pattern .
May be the spark for an invention can be an outcome of an positive dream but I realised to convert to reality one need to have millions of pessimistic thoughts which may address every draw backs and try to find solutions for it. In that way the pessimistic thoughts translates into rationality and leads to solutions and actions and optimistic thoughts creates the initial trigger. This doesn’t mean optimistic people are more emotional and pessimistic people are less or they are more rational. It just a correlation to thought patterns and not to discount pessimistic thoughts or a person with negative thoughts or either way .The value of any thought /person may not be significant today based on the least probable theory but may be later with much cumulative higher value in a different situation or context. May be the following equation comes to my mind to define the value of the thought related to invention
V1: Value of a thought leading to an Invention ~ F (number of negative thoughts challenging the status quo and actions towards it) / (No of positive thoughts without actions) keeping a situation as constant
V2: Value of a thought leading to an Invention ~ F (number of positive thoughts challenging the status quo and actions towards it) / (No of negative thoughts without actions) keeping a situation as constant
At least it looks like V1> V2 from the prism of my above mentioned scribbling ……