Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘optimism’

Simple. Real. Optimism.

“Where there’s hope, there’s life. It fills us with fresh courage and makes us strong again.” – Anne Frank

“I must uphold my ideals, for perhaps the time will come when I shall be able to carry them out.” – Anne Frank

Today lived up to its Monday-level reputation. The rush, the rally of activity disguised as strategy. Noise to fill the open space. Optimism is hard. It’s rigor, discipline and fluid. We need to be open to having sucky, shitty days and know that they are few and far between, letting them happen so they can pass like a kidney stone. Honest and real today, unapologetic. And it all reveals the most important strategy that we must execute consistently – simple. real. optimism with a side of hope. Optimism is the only real and sustainable option worthy of our passion and pursuit.

As I concluded the day with a walk in the woods, sharing the same sucky day stories with my best friends – one human, two dogs, two beautiful deer appeared in the woods feeding on some leaves, unassuming, unfraid and at ease. God’s brilliant reminder that He’s got this, so settle in for the ride. It’s quite simple, keep it that way.

Tomorrow – a clean slate, another day. Simple. Real. Optimism.

“In the long run, the sharpest weapon of all is a kind and gentle spirit.” – Anne Frank

Empathy and Optimism

“Rejoice in the things that are present; all else is beyond thee.” – M Michel de Montaigne

“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” – Romans 12:15

At the start of a meeting yesterday, each person was asked to share two words that described them in that moment. I listened intently and it was a mix. As I thought about my own words, I chose “empathy and optimism.”

When we are empathetic, we can listen and “weep with those who weep” and by harnessing the power and fuel of optimism, we can simultaneously “rejoice with those who rejoice.” Weeping is real, required and will pass with time. Rejoicing is a way to live, even in the midst of weeping moments.

We are a mix of opposites, contradictions, imperfection, resilience and beautiful music. Pursue awareness – self first so you can see yourself in others and genuinely feel empathy rather than judgment and assumptions. Awareness prompts action and necessary change. As Maya Angelo said, “when you know better, you do better.”

We need to both weep and rejoice, with a bias toward rejoicing and optimism. Life is fragile, strong, short, long and no day returns to repeat so seize today, let go of yesterday and hope for tomorrow.

“To live would be an awfully big adventure.” – Peter Pan

Change Your Explanations

“While you can’t control your experiences, you can control your explanations.”― Martin E.P. Seligman, Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life

We want things to be different but are unwilling to change. When we shift our energy and effort from trying to change other people and circumstances, we can focus on the only thing we can change – ME.

Studies have shown that optimism and gratitude improve our health including preventing chronic disease, improving our immune system, reducing stress and increasing life longevity.

And, yes it can be difficult to be optimistic when other people are pessimistic, complaining, gossiping and chirping. But with attention and practice, you can strengthen your optimism muscles and be healthier and happier. A worthy pursuit to be sure.

In her article How to Be Optimistic When the World Around You Isn’t, Amy Morin, LCSW offers a few suggestions:

  1. Optimism is a choice – turn your mindset around and think positive thoughts;
  2. Decide to be optimistic – it’s a daily decision, start each day reading, thinking and saying positive things. Force it until it takes hold;
  3. Avoid positive energy vampires – boundaries and limits on toxic people and the news;
  4. Recognize your negative thoughts – catch yourself in the act, reframe and flip it;
  5. Bestow positivity on others – share positive feedback with others – BONUS – it returns to you!;
  6. Imagine a positive future – dream big;
  7. Practice gratitude – an instant boost of optimism.

There is no risk, only reward in becoming optimistic. Changing your perspective, old stories and explanations = happier life.

 

Jump Start

I wasn’t feeling it this morning, so I was going to put off posting until tonight. Putting it off is the recipe for not doing it. Stop procrastinating and start right where you are now. Change your attitude and perspective.

When you don’t feel it inside, go outside for some inspiration, motivation and optimism. Day 14 – 30 day positive thinking habit. Make it a GREAT day!

Here’s 5 Positive Quotes to Jump Start Your Day!:

  1. “Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all.” – Norman Vincent Peale
  2. “Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come.” – Henri Nouwen
  3. “Few things in the world are more powerful than a positive push. A smile. A world of optimism and hope. A ‘you can do it’ when things are tough.” – Richard M. DeVos
  4. “A strong positive mental attitude will create more miracles than any wonder drug.” – Patricia Neal
  5. “It takes but one positive thought when given a chance to survive and thrive to overpower an entire army of negative thoughts.” – Robert H. Schuller

4 Simple Things

“I am here and I’m alive. That’s enough.” – Don Miguel Ruiz

The morning is the best time to plant seeds, to set the tone for the day. Set your mind on how you will enter the world. Little things push us over the edge. Stop before you talk or say anything negative. Bring light into the world and it shines back on you tenfold.

Day 2 – optimism rocks – spread it!

“Light originates from a single point…and that point is everywhere.” – Don Miguel Ruiz

Don Miguel Ruiz’s book The Four Agreements offers simple and straightforward directions to live by to find joy daily.

  1. Be Impeccable with Your Word.
  2. Don’t Take Anything Personally.
  3. Don’t Make Assumptions.
  4. Always Do Your Best.

Check out more encouraging articles and resources here.

Impeccable words, don’t take it personally, no assumptions, do your best no matter what’s going on.

Cast light!

30 Days of Light – Go!

“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.” – Colin Powell

There’s something about a new month, a new week, a new day that wipes the slate clean, if we allow, giving us the chance to start again. Life can only be lived going forward to be fully realized. The past is done, learn the lessons, be open to growth, let go and move on.

As we kick off the first day of October, I am committing to sending 30 days of positive vibes and daily encouragement to take a walk on the bright side of the road. Optimism is a choice, and often, not an easy one. With practice, intention and commitment, it becomes habit.

So my featured resource for today is the Greater Good Magazine and a few cool links:

Happiness October Calendar download
How to Prime Your Mind for Optimism
Eight Reasons Why Awe Makes Your Life Better

As we enter the first day of this month, join me for the next 30 days choosing gratitude, positive thoughts and actions. Search out awe, say and share only good things, spread joy to lighten the path for yourself and others.

30 days of light starts now – Cast light!

Play All Week Long

“The master of the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which; he simply pursues his vision of excellence in whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both.” – Buddha

Cast away those Sunday night blues and look at this week in a new light. Remember the playfulness of the weekend and carry that through the rest of the week. Try it for one week. Just one. Take back those five days that we trade away waiting on the weekend.

“Play is the exultation of the possible.” - Martin Buber

“Play is the exultation of the possible.” - Martin Buber

Play hard, look up and forward to the possibilities.

“Play with life, laugh with life, dance lightly with life, and smile at the riddles of life, knowing that life's only true lessons are writ small in the margin.” - Jonathan Lochwood Huie

“Play with life, laugh with life, dance lightly with life, and smile at the riddles of life, knowing that life's only true lessons are writ small in the margin.” - Jonathan Lochwood Huie

%d bloggers like this: