I tend to be a bit of an optimist. Personally, I just feel that being an optimist is better than the alternative. Having spent a good portion of my life in both states of mind, I will be the first to tell you that being an optimist is far more enjoyable than being a pessimist.
When tragic events occur, such as the one that we are experiencing right now, it can be challenging to remain optimistic. The world is living in fear, chaos is spreading like a wildfire, and so much of what we see and hear prioritizes only the negative results of what’s going on.
In being an optimistic person, to say that I am still happy doesn’t mean that I am diminishing anything that is going on in the world around me or that I don’t care about any of it. It simply means that I choose to see the good in every situation, no matter how challenging that situation may be to embrace.
Reflecting On The Past
In reflecting on my life prior to the challenging times that we are now facing, it’s clear to see just how good everything was in life. I think I can speak for the majority of us when I say that a bad day a year ago wouldn’t seem like such a bad day today.
Maybe you had a bad day at the office and dreaded going back the next day. But right now, I’m sure you would do anything to just be in the office. Maybe you went out to eat and the restaurant messed up your order and that ruined your day. Right now, I’m sure you would do anything to be able to go out to eat and not have to worry about cooking or staying 6 feet away from everybody.
Everything in life is all about perspective. We do not have the ability to single-handedly change the chaos that the world is experiencing right now, but we do have the ability to change the way we perceive the times that we are living in.
Who knows, maybe in a year from now, you will look back on today and find that today would be a good day compared to the even more challenging times that you are experiencing. The point is, we just never know what the future holds, so why not remain as optimistic and positive about today knowing that tomorrow is surely going to hold something different.
4 Things We Should All Learn From Hard Times
As I was saying before I got slightly sidetracked, being an optimist doesn’t mean that you don’t recognize or acknowledge problems in life. Rather, it means that you choose to see the good in all problems, how you can grow from these problems, and to acknowledge just how good life is, even in the midst of challenges and struggles.
To help us all find the light in a dark situation, here are 4 things we should all learn from hard times.
1) Learn To Be Grateful
It’s challenging to focus on things to be grateful for when times are hard. So many people are losing their jobs, are having to postpone vacations or weddings, and have to stay home all day with kids that are driving them crazy.
But in the grand scheme of things, why not look at how truly blessed we are. While times are hard, we are still living, hopefully we are still healthy, and we still get to surround ourselves with those that we love the most.
We can’t do all that much to change the current circumstances, so why should we focus on the negatives brought with them? Why not use this time to be grateful for the very basics of life that we often overlook because of our desire to achieve more and to be more?
2) Make The Most Out Of Every Day
Again, it’s something that’s going to be hard to do, especially when we are relatively limited to what we are actually able to do. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t still make the most out of today and live the absolute best life that we can live. We have all witnessed how quickly times can change. Maybe everything will be better in a few months from now, or maybe it won’t be. We just never know what the future holds, which is why we need to make the most out of every day and treat it as the blessing that it is.
Stuck at home with your kids? Use this time to build a stronger relationship with them and really connect with them.
Having to work remotely and don’t like it? Well, I don’t know how you couldn’t like it, but use this time to advance your technological skills or do something enjoyable for yourself with the time you would have spent commuting.
Fear you might lose your job? We all fear this, even those who have been told that their job is secure.
There is so much uncertainty right now that we just never know. Use this time then to take the chance on yourself, to create the future that you have always wanted, and do something today that your future self will thank you for.
3) Slow Down and Reflect On How Good Life Is
Think about this, a year ago, going to the store to get some toilet paper was a task that many of us complained about doing. Now, much of the world would love the opportunity to simply get out of their homes, nevertheless have a roll of toilet paper to use.
We were all so caught up in this game of social comparison and a never-ending desire for more that we failed to realize just how good we had it in life. We were focused more on the number of Instagram likes that we had instead of focusing on the impact that we were creating on the world around us.
As the world has drastically slowed down, so too should you. Learn from your past, slow down and appreciate all of the beauty that surrounds you, and take some time out of your day to reflect on how good life truly is, even in the midst of all the chaos we are experiencing.
4) Realize That You Are Never Alone
If there is one benefit to all of the chaos that we are experiencing, it’s to realize that you are never alone. No matter the challenges and struggles that you may be experiencing in life, there is always somebody else out there in the world who is going through similar ones. This is proof of that.
It’s strange to think about, but it almost feels as if the world has finally come together as one. Even briefly, it feels as though we have put aside our racial differences, our religious beliefs, and our political views to truly come together as one during a time where we are all experiencing challenges. It’s sad that it’s taken a pandemic for us to get there, but maybe, just maybe we can learn from this and continue down this path, even when times get back to “normal.”
I hope you can see that even in the midst of all struggles, there is still a lot of good that we can focus on. Sure, it may be difficult to see the good in life right now, but you are here, you are breathing, and you still have people who love you and will stick by you through all of this. That’s what’s most important.