How Does Pessimism Negatively Affect The Workplace?
This post was developed via a partnership with BetterHelp.
Pessimism is when a person automatically expects the worse out of a given situation and generally focuses on the negatives of a set of circumstances rather than the positives.
This can be a challenging character trait in social relationships but thrown into a workplace where people benefit most from uplifting attitudes; it can really be a damper on mood and productivity. That’s why it’s crucial to foster a positive environment in the workplace.
Here’s how pessimism can have a direct impact on the well-being of your employees:
It Lowers Morale
Being pessimistic at work can take a toll on employees and wear down their morale, and it can cause workers to lose motivation in their projects and lead to an overall lousy work ethic.
Being in a bad mood can also make people more vulnerable to distractions and prone to foggy thinking, which can make it more challenging to complete tasks, and when they are complete, they’re likely to be of lesser quality because they were not done to the full extent of someone’s abilities.
This is particularly true for leaders of a team, as their mood and outlook can significantly impact how well those underneath them will fare.
It’s Bad For Your Employees’ Health
In the same way, that optimism can benefit employees’ health, pessimism can have the opposite effect and be detrimental to your mental and physical well-being.
Pessimism can put you at greater risk for heart diseases, a lowered immune system making you more prone to viral infections, and just an overall risk for a shorter lifespan due to those conditions. Dive deeper into how pessimism affects a person’s mental health here.
So obviously, bringing this into the workplace puts your employees at risk of becoming sick, and would you really want to lose out on your best, most dedicated workers because you can’t look on the bright side of things?
If you hang around someone who’s doom and gloom, chances are that the negativity is going to inevitably rub off on you and potentially even ruin your day. Now imagine this negativity brewing for 40 hours a week or more. It’s just not sustainable for people and will likely make employees feel highly stressed out.
This will significantly reduce productivity and the ability for everyone to effectively communicate or collaborate on tasks because it can make people harbor resentment. Coworkers who carry a positive attitude will work better together and get more done.
How To Be More Optimistic At Work
There are plenty of small techniques you can implement into your workday to improve the quality of your mood. For example:
- Eat a nutritious, balanced breakfast with plenty of protein, carbs, and fats to ensure you’ll have steady energy levels throughout the day, but make sure to stay away from too much sugar to avoid crashing midday that can make you feel irritable.
- Every single day, either at the beginning of your workday or at the very end, take a moment to write down what you were grateful for that day or the day before. Consistently reminding you that there are things to be thankful for will keep your spirits high.
- You don’t have to be best friends with the people you work with, but making an effort to build good relationships with your coworkers, to laugh with them, and get the occasional drinks after work, will give you something to look forward to besides work, as well as make you feel supported every time you clock in for the day.