I admire those for whom optimism comes naturally. I lean on the optimistic side myself but certainly have my moments of pessimism.
Still, it is optimism that gives me the will to write — among other things — because hope fuels the creative mind with enthusiasm. With energy.
That means creatives must be a bunch of optimists. Which is crazy, considering how self-doubting we are. But … if we didn’t embrace a sense of hope, if we didn’t believe the unimaginable was possible (email from editors, wonderful reviews), we would never put our work out there.
We’d never get out of bed.
A good friend of mine recently described her life philosophy. She “always stays serene and knows everything will be alright.” She probably didn’t mean it to be a big revelation, but I thought: how great to have such “glass is half full” attitude all the time.
Yet part of me thinks optimism, like anything, is good in moderation. Sometimes, it can work against us, causing problems with its sunny sense of possibility. Hope, as I read somewhere, is not a very good plan. And perhaps too much of it makes a person seem naive, I don’t know.
Set me straight here, please.
I admit to times when the glass didn’t just look half empty, but downright void. Nothing there. Times when I wallowed in my misery and would have loved some company, thank you very much.
I think my friend has worked hard at acquiring this attitude. I don’t think this is something she was born with (having known her long enough), but something she learned.
Yes, I believe optimism is learned more than genetic. Probably a matter of how we channel our positive energy (how’s that for a buzz term?). Especially when it’s easy to learn that life sucks when filled with pessimism.
What do you think? And how do you keep your optimism high?
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