“The pessimist sees only the dark side of the clouds and mopes; the philosopher sees both sides and shrugs: the optimist doesn't see the clouds- he's walking on them.”
I read that quote a couple days ago and I thought it was very good. It made me start thinking about what it really means to be “optimistic” or “pessimistic.” We have all seen those words used and we think that we know what they mean but do we ever stop to think about them? I don't think we do. I think that we just see them as two different personalities but actually, whether or not we are optimistic or pessimistic is entirely our choice.
So do we want to be optimistic or pessimistic? Well, if you have ever been around a pessimist then you have probably realized that, though they may be amusing for a little while, they soon become annoying. Nobody wants to be around a sarcastic, sour or complaining person for very long. They just don't make us feel happy or satisfied. However, if you have ever spent much time with a person who is determined to be happy all the time, then you surely must know that it is enjoyable to be around optimists.
So how do we become optimists? Let me refer here to another nice quote which, I think, can answer our question.
The Optimist and the Pessimist
“Two men look out through the same bars,
One sees the mud and the other sees the stars.”
I think that being an optimist really means being someone who is always looking for the good in situations, people or things. Abraham Lincoln said “If you look for the good in people, you will surely find it.” If we are looking for the bright side of things than we will be living in a world of sunshine. The only reason that pessimists find so much to be sad about is that they are looking for sad things! John Lubbock said “What we see, depends mainly on what we look for.”
We can do even better than looking only at the bright side of obstacles: we can look beyond them. You can't see the dusky, cold morning around you if you are focusing on the sunrise ahead. If we decide to be optimistic than we will not even need to see the obstacle because we will be looking beyond it and looking beyond it, will take us over it.