wishful thinking


Definition of wishful thinking

: the attribution of reality to what one wishes to be true or the tenuous justification of what one wants to believe

Examples of wishful thinking in a Sentence

The idea that the enemy will immediately surrender is nothing more than wishful thinking.
Recent Examples on the Web But that looks like very wishful thinking -- the timetable is still very tight, and there remains some considerable opposition in parliament to his deal. Luke Mcgee, CNN, "Boris Johnson wants to get Brexit done by Halloween. It's going to be a nightmare," 22 Oct. 2019 Despite the hype, the notion that the collagen in bone broth will somehow become collagen in your body is just wishful thinking. Brooke Russell, Quartzy, "Drinking collagen has health benefits—but don’t put it in your coffee," 5 Oct. 2019 This might be a good time to search for a new job, but your ability to negotiate the best terms could be hampered by wishful thinking. Tribune Content Agency, oregonlive.com, "Horoscope for Aug. 28, 2019: Happy birthday Jason Priestley; Aries, broadcast your desires," 28 Aug. 2019 Those scattered sprinkles a few folks might have seen on their way to work Friday morning aren't leading up to the first monsoon storm of the season, despite wishful thinking. Brieanna J. Frank, azcentral, "Is first monsoon storm on the horizon? Clouds, scattered sprinkles hang over Phoenix area," 12 July 2019 Seeing as most of the United States doesn’t have these requirements, either, O’Rourke’s gun-control idea seems like more like wishful thinking than a viable solution. Katherine Timpf, National Review, "San Francisco Deemed the NRA a ‘Domestic Terrorist Organization’. Here’s Why That’s Wrong.," 4 Sep. 2019 Long, slow decline Some argue the sudden optimism about labor is just wishful thinking. oregonlive, "Labor disputes across Oregon heat up on Labor Day," 1 Sep. 2019 The insightful dialogue often sounds like wishful thinking. The Economist, "The alchemy of adolescence, in 1990s New York," 1 Aug. 2019 No amount of wishful thinking across these last two weeks of the season can change that. Tara Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, "Moments to savor for Red Sox have been precious and few," 7 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wishful thinking.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of wishful thinking

1932, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for wishful thinking

Last Updated

17 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for wishful thinking

The first known use of wishful thinking was in 1932

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More Definitions for wishful thinking

wishful thinking


English Language Learners Definition of wishful thinking

: an attitude or belief that something you want to happen will happen even though it is not likely or possible

More from Merriam-Webster on wishful thinking

Nglish: Translation of wishful thinking for Spanish Speakers

Comments on wishful thinking

What made you want to look up wishful thinking? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


concealed or difficult to comprehend

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