This study examined the links between academic and social defensive pessimism and optimism strategies and adolescents' future orientation in two prospective domains: education and military service. Analyses of data collected from Israeli 11th graders indicated (a) the prediction concerning domain specificity was corroborated so that academic strategies were significantly linked to prospective education components, and social strategies to prospective military service components and (b) investment in prospective life-course domains was linked to adolescents' employment of optimistic rather than defensive pessimism strategies. Findings emphasize the optimism underpinning future orientation and the need to distinguish between short-term and long-term effects of defensive pessimism on performance and psychological well-being. It was suggested that defensive pessimism may be positively associated with future orientation are both prospectively directed. Defensive pessimism may facilitate short-term planning and task performance but hinder the motivation to invest in the construction of long-range future orientation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science