I Believe in the Power of Optimism

Lynsee - Harrisonburg, Virginia
Entered on February 27, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: hope
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“Oh by the way, we’re moving to Italy in two months.” This is what my dad casually told me while I was watching TV one day after school. Even though this might seem strange, it is not a rare occurrence in my family. My dad has been in the United States Navy for thirty-one years. My life has revolved around my dad informing my family of his next duty station and when the movers were coming. I have moved ten times in my life, ranging from Hawaii, to Nebraska, to Tennessee, and like I mentioned above, Italy. The one attribute that got me through all these moves and changes throughout my life was my optimistic attitude. I believe the power of optimism gives you a better outlook on life and leads you to achievement.

I was supposed to live in Italy for two years, but once again the Navy surprised us with a move. My dad told me would we be moving in the summer – the summer before my senior year of high school. By this point, moving was getting annoying; I had the stress of finding new teachers to write me recommendations for college, and of course the stress of finding someone to sit with at lunch on the first day of school. I made it through senior year and ended up making a lot of great friends and getting into my first choice college. I was able make the best of this move, and all the other moves, because I went into it optimistically. On the first day of school I told myself that everything would work out, and that I would make a lot of new friends. I believe in a self-fulfilling prophecy. Since I told myself I would like it, I did. If I went in thinking I would not make any friends and I would hate it, then I probably would have.

Helen Keller said, “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” Helen Keller was both deaf and blind; these disabilities could have allowed her to be depressed and to have a pessimistic outlook on life. Instead, Helen Keller embraced the life she was given. She was the first deaf blind person ever to earn a Bachelors of Arts Degree. Helen Keller was also an author, a campaigner for women’s suffrage, and a worker’s rights activist. Without her optimistic attitude she would not have been able to complete these phenomenal achievements.

I know that if I was not optimistic whenever I had to start over in a new place, then I would have eventually resented my dad, the Navy, and my life. I would not have been able to embrace living all over the United States and abroad in Italy. I have learned throughout my life that the power of optimism allows you to experience life fully.