A Cup Half Full


The familiar question, “Is your cup half empty or half full?” is really a question to decipher whether you are a pessimist or an optimist. Each perspective has its own advantages, and one is not better or more “right” than the other.

Optimists are considered positive people.

People are drawn to optimists for their uplifting views on things. They look at the bright side or find a way to turn things around in their minds to see the positive aspect of a situation.

The downside of being an optimist is being too positive when a more balanced perspective is needed. A person may need to be more realistic, but if he or she is too optimistic, may not see the situation objectively.

Pessimists are considered negative people.

Negative Nancys are a drag to be around. It is easy to understand why pessimists get a bad wrap. Too much of this view leads to complaining, whining, and despair.

However, the upside of being a pessimist is seeing a realistic side of a situation. Instead of shouting positive claims, pessimists can see when something might not be all rainbows and unicorns.

Be the best of both views.

Even though most people tend to be stronger in one disposition over the other, it is not set in stone. The best place to be is right down the middle, neither pessimist nor optimist. We do not need to label ourselves with being an optimist or a pessimist.

Sometimes the cup is half empty while also half full. When we can see a situation from both perspectives, we are thinking in a balanced way. We will make better decisions when we can consider different viewpoints.

The next time you find yourself exhibiting pessimistic or optimistic views, take a moment to see the other side. You will see things more clearly. Be realistic and objective with the situation.

The next time someone asks you if you are a person who sees the cup half full or half empty, say, “Both!”

The image was taken by Joseph Greve and can be found on Unsplash.