Originally Posted by steveiam
When you play do you always think the worst is going to happen (villian hits one outer on the river) or do you think the outcome is going to be a positive one.
When I'm all in on the flop, I'm a pessimist if the villain calls on a draw. I've just been drawn out on so many times that I expect it to happen again. In reality, I've probably won most of those races, but I tend to remember the suckouts more.
But I think being an optimist can generally be +EV. Example:
Optimist: "How can I win this pot, regardless of my cards?" (encourages creative thought)
Pessimist: "I'm so card dead. If I don't get a good hand soon, I'm toast." (encourages passive play, impatience, getting blinded away, taking few risks)
I think the optimist can find more creative ways of winning pots by floating flops and turns in position etc, or by repping strong hands when they are weak etc.
But I think the book may be addressing the attitude one should have before sitting down at a table. For example, the pessimist who is about to sit down at a $1\$2 table with $200-$300 has embraced the possibility of losing his stack, whereas the optimist expects to book a win that may not happen.
In that case, I prefer to be the pessimist, and if I'm not comfortable losing my stack, I will sit in the lobby and read a poker book or play a training app while my friend plays a 6 hour cash session. Call me a supernit, but I have literally done this before to avoid playing scared-money.