A rosy prescription
Many times in my life I’ve walked into situations bright-eyed with rose coloured glasses and a fully trusting and optimistic heart — later to determine in hindsight that perhaps I should’ve been a bit more cautious. But being optimistic, trusting and wearing my heart on my sleeve is just how I roll.
Wear your heart on your sleeve—and then put your DH helmet on
Sometimes I wish that I could peel my heart from my sleeve and package it up in a tightly sealed box. Where I could feel nothing, instead of everything. But I suppose that would be like a bike without a drivetrain. I don’t know how to be heartless — and I don’t want to learn how.
“An artist feels vulnerable to begin with; and yet the only answer is to recklessly discard more armour”— Eric Maisel
A waypoint to awareness
When storms roll in, it’s tempting to let the rose turn to grey. When life bends us to its will and we don’t break, it is there that we learn what we are made of .
Grief although painful; acts as a waypoint to inner awareness. Here lies a moment requiring deep and uninterrupted presence. As hard as it is, don’t avoid the sadness—jump on your bike and shift the sadness into a shift in course. Push through the struggle, channel your pain, The lessons are a guarantee, the outcome will be determined by your surrendering.
Neither optimism or pessimism are truly rationalized. But choosing to be optimistic as much as possible will give you the courage you need to think outside the box, and press on when pessimism sees only defeat. A little bit of doubt and pessimism is healthy, like imagining—and being prepared for—worst-case scenarios. But too much pessimism will hold you back from reaching new territory. It may seem like a safe play to fold into doubt; but facing risk with enthusiasm—fail or succeed—is a path that turns every mistake into a teacher.
The truth is, whatever you’re trying to do has a high probability of failure, and yet, every success was created by somebody who allowed themselves to believe that, despite the odds, they could pull it off anyway.
“Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?’ ‘Supposing it didn’t,’ said Pooh after careful thought.” — A.A. Milne
The optimist is seen as someone who trusts too much and hopes too much—he or she can’t face reality, is short on experience, information, critical thinking or an understanding of what it means to fail. To me, being optimistic doesn’t mean I’m denying whatever bad may happen in life; it’s a choice to consider the bad, whether the risk is worth taking, and then make bold moves and give people the benefit of the doubt. I’d rather take chances, wear my heart on my sleeve, and my soul on my smile, because in a world of second guessers, personal expression and heartfelt decisions are too often repressed. Authenticity is silenced. As a result, we suffer.
Having rosy optimism underpinning your life, in my opinion, has far greater benefits than drawbacks. Optimism is the expectation of good things to happen, bad things will get better, and the belief that behavior matters in the face of challenges.
In relationships, it means seeing the other person with empathy and awe. You focus less on their faults and more on their goodness; you’re not afraid to tell them how wonderful the other person is, you don’t play games, give not to get, and you don’t give up easily in the face of challenges.
In interactions, you engage in acts of kindness just to make people believe in the goodness of the world again, you believe people are doing the best they can, and you give others the benefit of the doubt.
In business, optimists have a solution-focused mindset propels positive action. If your job requires high accuracy, pessimism may benefit you; however in the face of setbacks and when rejected, it is the optimist who takes another chance, makes another phone call, and carries on.
Optimists realize that not everything will be successful, but not everything will fail, too.
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” — Winston Churchill
Having a healthy disregard for the impossible is what elevates you to incredible places and newfound perspectives. You have to be a little lofty about your ambitions; believe the bumps in the road are part of the journey and aim to do things that most people would not do…