Optimism

One of the things I learned the hard way was it does not pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.

Optimism and self-pity are the positive and negative poles of modern cowardice.

It is certainly strange to observe... how many people seem to feel vain of their own unqualified optimism when the place where optimism most flourishes is the lunatic asylum.

One cannot have faith without optimism. Faith and hope are inseparable. Depression is a great obstacle in the spiritual life and we must strive to conquer it... Cheerfulness is one of the essential spiritual qualities we must guard ourselves against dejection, self-denunciation, or even feeling a little down-hearted... Dejection invariably distorts our vision - it magnifies our troubles.

The basis of optimism is sheer terror.

Optimists perform better statistically. Optimism is power.

The food of events is thought. Your habitual thoughts nourish your conditions and cause them to increase and multiply. Fear thoughts, gloomy and critical thoughts, selfish thoughts, are the food of unhappiness, sickness, and failure. When you supply this food in abundance these things come into your life – because they seek their food. Thoughts of God, thoughts of kindness, of optimism, and good will, are the food of health, joy, and success; and if you furnish a bountiful supply of this food you will attract these things instead.

The 'preferred future' - an image of aspiration - [is] a powerful guidance mechanism… When people plan present actions by working backward from what is really desired, they develop energy, enthusiasm, optimism and high commitment.

The act of writing is an act of optimism; you would not take the trouble to do it if you felt that it didn't matter.

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope or confidence.

Today I will make a difference. I will begin by controlling my thoughts. A person is the product of his thoughts. I want to be happy and hopeful. Therefore, I will have thoughts that are happy and hopeful. I refuse to be victimized by my circumstances. I will not let petty inconveniences such as stoplights, long lines, and traffic jams be my masters. I will avoid negativism and gossip. Optimism will be my companion, and victory will be my hallmark. Today I will make a difference.

We believe in optimism rather than pessimism, hope rather than despair, learning in the place of dogma, truth instead of ignorance, joy rather than guild or sin, tolerance in the place of fear, love instead of hatred, compassion over selfishness, beauty instead of ugliness and reason rather than blind faith or irrationality.

The essence of optimism is that it takes no account of the present, but it is a source of inspiration, of vitality and hope where others have resigned; it enables a man to hold his head high, to claim the future for himself and not to abandon it to his enemy.

Religion should be disentangled as much as possible from history and authority and metaphysics, and made to rest honestly on one's feelings, on one's indomitable optimism and trust in life.

Nine times out of ten, optimism is a sly form of selfishness, a method of isolating oneself from the unhappiness of others.

Depression, achievement, and physical health are three of the most obvious applications of learned optimism. But there is also the potential for a new understanding of yourself.

Optimism is just a useful adjunct to wisdom. By itself it cannot provide meaning. Optimism is a tool to help the individual achieve the goals he has set for himself. It is in the choice of the goals themselves that meaning - or emptiness - resides. When learned optimism is coupled with a renewed commitment to the commons [common good], our epidemic of depression and meaninglessness may end.

To talk about the need for perfection in man is to talk about the need for another species. The essence of man is imperfection. Imperfection and blazing contradictions - between mixed good and evil, altruism and selfishness, co-operativeness and combativeness, optimism and fatalism, affirmation and negation.

Few things in the world are more powerful than a positive push. A smile. A word of optimism and hope. A "yes you can do it" when things are tough.