Whenever you open a newspaper these days, you mostly find voices of pessimism. The economic downturn is the end of our economy, the end of democracy and maybe even of civilization per se. Also lobby-groups of all kind of professions talk about the support their clientele need to survive (don’t get me wrong, I am not against economic support, it is definitely needed) – the total collapse of the world we know is getting closer and closer and no light at the end of the tunnel is in sight. (see my first essay on leadership and containment) The only light for most of the people comes with the actual reducing of the lock down. And even this light is darkened by the (realistic) worry that the opening up comes to soon and too fast.

By pessimism I rather mean a state of then a character or personality trait in contrast to optimism. This kind of pessimism seems to serve all of us well in the current crisis.

First is a good protection – against further disappointment and despair. Since you are prepared for the worse you feel safer whilst reducing your expectations to lowest possible level. You are preparing for the loss of income, your job, your money, luck – maybe now you are preparing for the loss of individual and societal freedom and even democracy. Only then do you get the feeling of being in control – because you are preparing yourself. In this way, pessimism also protects you against the underlying fear and the connected helplessness and powerlessness.

Please find here the full text: COVID 19 – How to get from fear to hope