“It’s better to be an optimist who is sometimes wrong than a pessimist who is always right.” -Unknown

There is so much about the brain that we don’t know. With that said, we know even less when it comes to an “injured brain”.  The good news is that we are learning more and more every day. Case and point, 20 years ago, it was believed that the adult brain could not “rewire”. Since that time, science has proven that the adult brain CAN “rewire”.   With this consensus amongst scientists (“rewiring is possible”), an entire field of study has been ignited to discover new treatments. So, this got me thinking. If I had an injured nervous system, would I rather be “team optimist” or “team pessimist”?………..

I am sure that we have all met that eternal optimist. Glass always half full. That person that finds it hard to identify the reason why something won’t work. “Optimists” spend far less time analyzing the probability of something going in their favor. They just act with a belief that things WILL work out in their favor.

Now, full disclosure, I teeter the line between optimist and pessimist. And in my own defense, “pessimists” sometimes get a bad “rep”. With that in mind, I am going to replace “pessimist” with “realist”. A “realist” on the other hand does the exact opposite of an optimist. A realist will analyze the probabilities (of something going in their favor) when making decisions…….

As I stated, there is SOOOO much about the brain we don’t know. With that said, here are two statements. Read them carefully because this will determine how you approach your exercises today……

1. There is a lot we don’t know about the brain. And no one can say for sure whether or not it is possible to make a full recovery after a brain has been injured. And the probability that you will achieve a “full recovery” might not lean in your favor.

2. New treatments for the injured brain are being discovered as we speak. Couple that with dozens of examples (I have witnessed) of people who went further than expected (based on our current understanding of brain recovery).

A “realist” will focus on the first statement, and in many cases, stop. An optimist will focus on the second statement and keep going.

I dare say I would rather “be an optimist who is sometimes wrong than a pessimist who is always right.”