interpretation of facts, actions, words, etc., as one would like them to be rather than as they really are; imagining as actual what is not.
- wishful thinker, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024
How to use wishful thinking in a sentence
For all their wishful thinking, climate science suggests there is no future in the region that does not include serious disruptions to its economy, growth trajectory and perhaps even quality of life.40 Million People Rely on the Colorado River. It’s Drying Up Fast. | by Abrahm Lustgarten | August 27, 2021 | ProPublica
Such initiatives sound a little vague, and calls for change always have a whiff of wishful thinking about them.Hundreds of AI tools have been built to catch covid. None of them helped. | Will Douglas Heaven | July 30, 2021 | MIT Technology Review
They took a sip more out of curiosity than wishful thinking.
Well, I’m here to say that’s wishful thinking for a pair of $130 earbuds.CX True Wireless review: Basic Sennheiser earbuds that sound anything but | Tony Ware | July 21, 2021 | Popular-Science
Given the full year during which it could have taken place, that certainly raises questions about just how much they were going on, beyond wishful thinking and innuendo.What a proven coronavirus lab leak theory would mean | Aaron Blake | May 27, 2021 | Washington Post
Our quest for better leaders—“Change we can believe in”— is wishful thinking.
Dear White People is a conversation about racism not buried under wishful thinking.‘Dear White People’ Is the Race Movie America Didn’t Know It Needed | Rawiya Kameir | October 17, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
But the idea he is going to attract droves of non-traditional Republican supporters is nothing more than wishful thinking.
Sometimes the wishful thinking was done by well-known individuals—the Dalai Lama and Ralph Bunche.Up To A Point: What We Really Need Is a Nobel War Prize | P. J. O’Rourke | October 11, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
At least 65 Peace Prizes have been awarded for wishful thinking.Up To A Point: What We Really Need Is a Nobel War Prize | P. J. O’Rourke | October 11, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
This impression was generally discredited, people were surfeited with optimism; they felt our reports were wishful thinking.Greener Than You Think | Ward Moore
This is contrasted to happenstance decision making based on impulsiveness and wishful thinking.Sequential Problem Solving | Fredric Lozo
Subconsciously he knew that this, at the very best, was wishful thinking.Planet of the Gods | Robert Moore Williams
However, for the present, it was just so much wishful thinking as far as Dawson was concerned.Dave Dawson on Guadalcanal | Robert Sydney Bowen
It's wishful thinking and we cannot permit such daydreaming in our precarious condition.Shock Absorber | E.G. von Wald
British Dictionary definitions for wishful thinking
the erroneous belief that one's wishes are in accordance with reality
- wishful thinker, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Other Idioms and Phrases with wishful thinking
Interpreting matters as one would like them to be, as opposed to what they really are. For example, Matthew wanted to be a basketball player, but with his height that was wishful thinking. This term comes from Freudian psychology of the mid-1920s and soon began to be used more loosely.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.