Career Advice

How to Use Pessimism To Fuel Your Job Search

ivessi 21 August, 2020

Think positive. This mantra is often preached at us during any tough spot in life. We are encouraged to keep our thoughts trained on the positive while we are going through negative situations. Although there is much to be said for positive thinking, pessimism can also be a useful tool when you are going through a job search. Keep reading to find out how you can use this unpopular sentiment to help you land your next great job.

Get Real

Sometimes too much positive thinking can cause a disconnect with reality. For instance, if you are set on waiting for a management or above entry level position, you might use optimism as an excuse for passing up good job offers at a level less than what you set out for. This is the wrong way to use optimism. Pessimism will help us keep a firm grip on reality. An entry level job being offered to you today pays more than a management position which no one is offering to you. Pessimism will push you to accept the lesser paying job. You can balance this with an optimistic attitude of taking the job only temporarily while you keep looking for that coveted management position.


Pessimism is also a powerful tool for planning for the future. As the old saying goes, "Hope for the best, but plan for the worst." This is the perfect balance between pessimism and optimism. You need a good dose of pessimism to keep you grounded about potential problems so that you can prepare for those. If you do not get another job in a timely fashion your finances will be in danger. If you stay unemployed too long it will create damaging employment gaps on your resume. These are healthy pessimistic ideas that can help push you forward on your job search.

Pessimism is not always a bad thing. Use pessimism in these healthy ways to fuel your job search.