In a world that praises cynicism — a world that considers negativity "wit," bullying "coolness," hating "joking," and wherein the concept of a comments section exists — you can't help but feel a bit displaced if you're of the opinion that things actually... aren't that bad. But more importantly: that, even when they are, being negative about them doesn't make them better.
If it sounds a little too Pollyanna for you, then that's just another side effect of the way society typically views hopeful people. They often get a reputation for misconceiving reality, or being willfully blind to it, when really they are just the opposite. It isn't to say that people who are hopeful and optimistic disregard the reality of the world in which we live. We are entirely aware of both the good and the bad, the hopeful and the hopeless, the ins and outs of what's on the evening news. We just acknowledge that the way to changing that reality is not to fight fire with more flames — but rather, to start seeing possibility, potential, love... hope. Here, four reasons why people who never lose that optimism are, actually, being smart (despite what the stereotypes would have you believe):
Optimism isn’t naivety
Optimism actually increases your ability to create a positive outcome. As you consider more positive outcomes, you make yourself able to act on them more. The biggest mistake we make is in thinking that negativity = depth, as that certainly is not the case. Optimism does not make you blind to what's really happening around you... it keeps you in a place of being hopeful and knowing that it's all transitory anyway.
Nothing in life will stay the same for long
One relationship leaves, eventually another stumbles on your lap. One job doesn’t work out, another does eventually. Extrapolating the moment — making a gross analysis of what your life amounted to be just because of what it is in the moment — is what we all tend to do, but it’s a terrible, terrible habit. Our lives are not just the summary we see in front of us immediately. Things are changing and shifting and moving and bending and breaking and healing all day, every day, all the time. Losing hope is just failing to acknowledge that nothing will remain for long regardless.
Most of the time, things really do turn out better than we anticipated they would in the long run
The only suffering we experience is in being too attached to things we didn’t ultimately want in the long-run. (Silly us.) But it's also that even when we are handed a colossal challenge or a very trying time, we can choose to look at it as a period of learning, or growing, or discovering something beyond that which we could have conceived of prior. Personally: the running theme in my life is that I always receive things that are better than I ever could have fathomed. My only error in judgment has been not wanting to trust the process, and the natural unfolding of my life.
Things exist in proportion
Call it the yin and yang and each side of the glass of water, but ultimately you can see your life as an incredible blessing or as a perpetual work-in-progress-that’s-never-good-enough. It’s all about your perception. The people who choose to maintain their hope know this: that their happiness cannot be taken away by circumstances. That there is always good to be found. That you'll find what you seek – and if you're always seeking the best possible outcome, it will find you, too. It's always just a matter of time.
Images: NBC; Giphy(4)