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Wishful thinking and denial

Psychological Perspectives


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Ken Silvestro, PhD. 677-7282 •

Wishful thinking has been called magical thinking, fantasy thinking, even idealistic thinking. It has never been called realistic thinking. In other words, it is a form of thought that expresses personal wishes, beliefs and ideals, which a person thinks are real. The bottom line is that people think themselves into a magical reality, one that doesn't coincide with actual reality. Clearly, this form of thought is not healthy because a person is not experiencing the reality of a current or future situation.

Wishful and magical thinking are expressed by children when playing or demanding somet...

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