Optimism and pessimism are attitudes—attitudes that shape and formulate our entire existence. Because, think about it, have you ever met a happy pessimist?
In short, our optimism or pessimism is…
… the way we interpret the past.
… the way we experience and view the present.
… the way we imagine the future.
And there are stark contrasts between optimism and pessimism and how they affect you:
Optimism breathes life into you each day.
Pessimism drains you.
Optimism helps you to take needed risks.
Pessimism plays it safe and never accomplishes much.
Optimism improves those around you.
Pessimism drags them down.
Optimism inspires people to great heights.
Pessimism deflates people to new lows.
There is only one way that optimism and pessimism are the same, and that is that they are both self-fulfilling. If you are an optimist, you will generally find that good things happen to you. And if you are a pessimist, you will find yourself in the not-so-good situations more often than not.
So can a person just become an optimist? Yes! We can choose to look at the world any way we want to. We can choose to look at the world and think the worst, or we can tell ourselves the good things about each situation.
And although there are tremendous benefits to being an optimist, there are some pessimists out there who will say, “But that isn’t realistic.” Who cares? If things go awry, at least you have spent your time beforehand enjoying life and not worrying about it. And, being an optimist, you would view the “negative” situation as an opportunity to grow and learn. So you can even look forward to your failures because they will be steppingstones and learning tools to be applied to your future success.
Have you ever met a successful pessimist? Commit to being an optimist and see your world change before your eyes.
Jessica Krampe is the digital managing editor for SUCCESS.com. A graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism, Jessica has worked for news, entertainment, business and lifestyle publications. Outside of the daily grind, she enjoys happy hours, live music and traveling.