The Power of Optimism

Steven - Vernal, Utah
Entered on January 29, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30

The Power of Optimism

When I first got to college I didn’t know anyone and I was very shy. I believed that people wouldn’t want to know me, and I didn’t feel like leaving my comfort zone to participate in the activities around campus. When I would go hang out with groups of people I would try not to draw attention to myself just to avoid disapproval. I thought that I would make some mistake and I would somehow be labeled “weird” or be shunned. My self esteem and my initiative were at an all time low because of my pessimistic view on life. I called my pessimistic view “being realistic”.

When I returned to school after having a two year sabbatical, I had developed a more optimistic nature. I left with some of my roomies to hang out, and it was great! I was able to get out there. I was able to free myself from what I had thought before; that no one would like me. Now I am more assertive. I feel free to ask questions and to think what I want when I talk, all because I have developed a more optimistic nature. I have been in groups of people and have had no problems in drawing attention to myself. I can have a great time without worrying what others think about me.

When I was being pessimistic I was just trying to ‘be real’. The truth is that it is harder to be optimistic than to ‘be real’ but I will never ‘be real’ again. ‘Be real’ means ‘accept things how they are’, ‘be mediocre’ or ‘be normal’. Athletes struggle to ‘get in the zone’ to leave the ‘real’ and do something extraordinary. In that time that I was away I realized that ‘being real’ doesn’t go anywhere. I can do extraordinary things when I just think optimistically. It is work to be optimistic just as it is to be ‘in the zone’ and it is always worth it.

I believe in the Power of optimism. I can reach for a solution with all my capacity when I think optimistically. Opening my mind and using my own capacity allows me to see the solution that is usually just before my nose. When I think optimistically I succeed. Optimism really is Power.