The Scowling Optimist

glass-is-halfRecently I read an article on Ian’s Messy Desk about optimism.

Optimism is a sorely misunderstood state of mind.  Most people would prefer to beat optimists half to death.  Which wouldn’t do any good at all, because optimists would just consider themselves beaten half alive.


Ian’s article included a “Creed for Optimists” by Christian D. Larson (which I think got featured in “The Secret” which makes me cringe a little).  Yes, some of the principles are a bit happy-happy-joy-joy, but two of them caught my attention:

Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.

Promise to think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.

I really like that view of optimism.  Optimism isn’t always a happy journey.  It means making demands of yourself and of others to rise above the muck and seek out something better.  It is hard work.

I admire the optimists that have a bit of a scowl to them.  People that are very well aware that the world is not a perfect place, but whose whole being is wired to look for something better, even if they have to pry it out of pessimism’s cold dead hands.

I’m not writing this because I’ve mastered this wonderful scowling optimism.  Not by a longshot.  But it is a goal of mine, and I remain…well…optimistic.

I have to go now.  Some people are here to beat me half alive.

[Ian’s Messy Desk – Choose to be an Optimist]
[photo: Stuart MacBride]

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