The gift of optimism

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Dear Sir

Winston Churchill once said, “a pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, while an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”.

Optimism reflects the belief that the outcomes of events or experiences will generally be positive. Optimists are likely to see the cause of failure or a negative experience as temporary rather than permanent, specific rather than global, and external rather than internal.

In this way, optimists more easily see the possibility of change. Optimists have better healthier outlooks on life, living longer while putting all things under the light of observation, and study. They are less susceptible to the effects of illness, fatigue and depression. Optimists are better pain and health managers. Optimism often buffers the negative effects of illness, looking for meaning in adversity.

What would you rather be, an optimist or a pessimist, a person who sees limitations everywhere? The nurse in an emergency who sees patients who are going to get better and leave for a home someday, or a nurse who sees only negativeness, depression and failure. An optimist can see the good in death and understands that pain is how people’s bodies point out there is something wrong that needs to be fixed.

Are you the type of person who says, “I hate this miserable job” or the person who declares how pleased that he/she has a job? A glass half full, or half empty right?

Remember, “that the darkness will end, and the sun will rise”(Victor Hugo). To be an optimist does not mean to be foolish, deluded or plain. Optimists center their minds upon the marvels of our world, seeing “the possible” instead of what may be. Life may be miserable, stressful and pain-filled, yet the words of Oscar Wilde says it all … “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars”.

An optimist does not worry about what they cannot control but rather shifts their abilities and attitudes to what they can create. I have been of the opinion for quite some time that optimists are creators, and inventors of change and betterment, while their cousins the pessimists can stagnate, unsure and far too reserved towards action.

People are just that, people. Optimists and pessimists seem to complement each other, just as a liberal’s opinions are bounced off the opinion of a conservative.

Are we not all here to create, dream and extend a hand to one another?

Steven Kaszab

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