What makes passionate people uncontrollably optimistic? I met with a friend a colleague for breakfast and she reminded me enthusiastically that her attitude and disposition are contagious. She is unreserved in her excitement for what she is doing and achieving. Her perception in the face of challenges is opportunities. When she sees a gap she takes the initiative to fill it and where her preferred future is threatened she seeks to understand and overcome the barriers.
This isn’t a rose coloured naivety or gushing utopian rhetoric but rather a way to frame her days/weeks/months; her life. Realty wraps itself around us but we have the pleasure and responsibility of seeing it as a prospective possibility rather than a debilitating defeat.
Life is a series of experiences and perception is the economy with memories acting as the currency. We can be rich or we can be poor. It seems that we are able to manufacture and re-craft our experiences by changing our point of view and altering our response to the circumstances we face. When we capture memories, we add to our riches because they can be revisited, revised and re-remembered and relived and relished. If we pass through the events and moments of our day with disinterest and ennui we are less likely to perceive anything worth stashing in our wallet.
In order to change our tomorrows we need to be alive in our todays. Sleepwalking through a Thursday wastes a gift but also contributes to creeping lethargy on Friday, Saturday and Monday. I encourage you to go through today with your eyes open for glee, greatness, and grand adventures. If they don’t appear, shift your intention to opportunity and watch for a small shift towards hope. It is within your sight but may be shrouded by a bias, your mood, or an unwillingness to get out of the ditch.
If you want to stay in the rut that is wrestling with you then stop reading and hunker down for a full nelson suffocation. If you are already seeing beauty and awe, congratulations and keep pressing forward. If you are down but don’t want to be out, take small chance and smile, smell roses, see something special, and say something sunny to yourself and someone else.
Begin every day with a sincere and grateful heart and eyes wide open for the best in people, events and yourself.
Make Today Remarkable, by seeing it as remarkable,
“Optimism is the most important human trait, because it allows us to evolve our ideas, to improve our situation, and to hope for a better tomorrow.” ~ Seth Godin
I am not an eternal optimist but I am a dreamer. Not rose colored glasses dreaming but taking the circumstances and whistling them through my imagination.
Idealism sees the best something can be and wishes and acts it to be so. When I whistle and wish and look to a preferred future I am filled with hope. Hope is a choice that we get to make every day and the more we choose it the more we feel.
I don’t subscribe to a Utopian agenda because I believe that we live in a time and place that can be good, better, best but if we get Pollyana the menu of change becomes sappy and sugary and hard to swallow.
Optimists, enthusiasts, fanatics, admirers can be a ray of sunshine in a group or community but they need a tinge of realism so that they aren’t seen as naive empty headed zealots.
Why is the best of us and the worst of us separated by such a thin line? Have we always seen the easy going, buoyant, stargazer with suspicion if the enthusiasm was too over the top? Bryan Welch wrote “But history also gives us plenty of reason for optimism. On the humble foundation of skin clothing and bone jewelry we have built a wondrous technological superstructure to support ongoing innovation.” Maybe we only suspect the optimist when the level of uncertainty gets too high or the circumstances to dire. I imagine the guy who said ” It will all be great tomorrow” as meteors were raining down or an ice age was upon us would have been pretty hard to take.
Optimism is a motivator and a coping skill. For me it can be both at the same time. Leading me forward to good, better, best and protecting me from bad, worse, tragic.
I get to choose to be optimistic every morning and with every turn of my day. You get to accept my zeal every morning and at each turn. The acceptance has to do with me and our relationship and you and your disposition. Given that we both have a choice, I have decided that I am going to lean to hoping for the best and expecting the best. You can make your own decision.
Make Today Hopeful,
I was out early this morning to watch a grandson play hockey and made two stops on the way home. We don’t ‘shop’ on Saturday very often and completely forgot that this is the Dark Side Weekend (Black Friday to Cyber Monday). Everywhere there were people rushing from one item to the next, clutching their bounty and praying that the next thing would fulfill them. The icon of stuff isn’t rooted in hope, it is covered in desperation, Meaning doesn’t come from acquiring more, it comes from inside by being more.
Hope allows and urges you to stop piling up stuff you think you need, believe you need, want to need beside the stuff you bought yesterday, last week, last year (that didn’t bring anything more than a fleeting relief from the anxiety and emptiness).
Seek hope in relationships. Find hope in experiences. Cherish hope in a good book. Delight in hope in a shred meal. Dance with hope, sing with hope, pray with hope – she resides in music and poetry and faith.
I came home feeling sad for all those I saw chasing an impossible icon to fill a gaping hole but writing this gave me hope that someone will read it and begin a new journey to fulfillment by seeking hope, extending hope, and sharing hope.
Make Today Hopeful,
That is what most naysayers and newscasters would have us believe. They get notoriety and viewers by reporting the negative side of the story and then magnifying the consequences so that we are rapt in the fear they are co-creating. While I do have some rose-colored sunglasses I am not wearing them, I do recognize that there is crap going on. But we live in the best of times and they are getting better. According to the UN Millenium Goals,
- The target of reducing extreme poverty rates by half was met five years ahead of the 2015 deadline.
- The global poverty rate at $1.25 a day fell in 2010 to less than half the 1990 rate. 700 million fewer people lived in conditions of extreme poverty in 2010 than in 1990. However, at the global level 1.2 billion people are still living in extreme poverty.
Our access to health care has increased by nearly 1Billion. Life expectancy is continually increasing with optimists saying we could all live to the age that the oldest are living today (117 years)
Look for scarcity, you find scarcity. Look for tragedy, you find tragedy. Listen to crap, crap is created.
Listen to Kate’s rant, from Worldviews Project