Nectar Of Wisdom

O – Be Optimistic

“Optimism is a happiness magnet. If you stay positive, good things and good people will be drawn to you.”

Opening Story:

The Tiny Frog


Once upon a time, there was a group of tiny frogs who arranged a competition. The goal was to reach the top of a tower. A huge crowd of frogs gathered to watch the race and cheer on the contestants. The race began.

Not one frog in the audience believed that the contestants would reach to the top. After all, it was a HUGE tower! The crowd grew and many yelled,

“Oh, that is WAY too difficult!!’

“They will NEVER make it to the top.”

“Not a chance that they will succeed. The tower is too high!”

One by one, the tiny frogs collapsed and fell off the tower. Still, there was a group of determined frogs that climbed higher and higher. But the crowd continued to yell,

“It is too difficult!!! No one will make it!”

Discouraged and convinced by the negative cries, more of these tiny frogs collapsed and fell off the tower. Many frogs who were still climbing complained of the pain and eventually gave up. Some frogs, tired and battered, heard their peers’ complaints and subsequently threw in the towel too.

In the midst of this, ONE tiny frog persisted. He climbed. And he climbed. And he climbed. This tiny frog seemed to have super-frog strength that allowed him to push forward in spite of others failing. Why, though? Why is he able to climb so far when others are failing?? the crowd wondered.

By now, all the tiny frogs had either collapsed or given up — except for that one tiny frog. The crowd continued to yell, now at the tiny frog:

“This is too difficult!!’

“You will NEVER make it to the top!!”

“You better give up now while you can!!!”

But for some reason, that tiny frog climbed further, seemingly undaunted, unaffected. Finally, he reached the top of the hill. He had reached his destination!!!

All the tiny frogs were amazed as to how this one frog was able to make it to the top. They crowded around him, wanting to know his secret.

As it turned out, he was deaf.

What is the moral of the story? When dealing with naysayers, negative critics, and people who complain the loudest, our job is simply to… turn a deaf ear.

What sets an optimistic person apart from everyone else?  What makes some people dour, while others always see the brighter side of life?  How is it some people are always happy, energized, outgoing and full of joy?

For one thing, optimistic people look for the positive in every situation — they accept that there is negativity in life, but they still seek the brighter side — and, there’s certainly nothing wrong with that!

Positive (optimistic) people tend to have an open heart. They see beauty where others might see ugliness.  If it’s a rainy day, they may be a bit bummed about it, but they realize that just above the clouds, the sun is bright and the sky is blue — and they know that the sun will eventually show itself again, so they just deal with the rainy day.

People who have embraced positivity revolve their lives around things that uplift and inspire and they see opportunity, where others may see obstacles.

So aside from a sunny disposition (which by the way, no one has all the time), what sets optimists apart from naysayers?  Well, positive people tend to have better physical and mental health, they usually manage stress more effectively and overcome adversity quicker — often coming out of the adversity stronger than before!

Anyone can become a positive thinker.  While it does take some effort, it has a cumulative effect and the more positive thoughts you have and the more positive actions you take, the quicker the transition into positivity.

Do you want to stop thinking negatively? Are you looking for greater happiness and more confidence?

Optimism is an attitude that sets us up for life success by helping us focus on what works and how we contribute to what works. Optimistic people have more fun, are healthier and achieve more of their potential. Optimistic thinking is a skill that anyone can learn.

Some people are more optimistic by nature, but optimism is not a fixed attribute.  It’s a choice we have control over.  Every morning, we either choose to wake up grumpy or wake up with a positive outlook.  Research has shown that, in the long run, optimistic people handle stress better, get sick less often, live longer, and are happier and more successful than their pessimistic counterparts.


The good news is that we can all develop skills to improve optimism.  Here are five ideas to get you started:

1.  Find the opportunity in every difficulty.

‘Optimist’ is a word which here refers to a person who focuses on the positive.  For instance, if an optimist lost her left arm in a car accident, she might say in a hopeful voice, “I’m alive.  I don’t have my left arm anymore, but I do have my right one, and my life still to live.”

Optimism does not mean ignoring the problem entirely; it means understanding that setbacks are inevitable, often temporary, and that you have the skills and abilities to combat the challenges you face.  What you are dealing with may be difficult, but it is important to remain hopeful and positive about a brighter future.  Optimism will inspire a sense of hopefulness and the confidence that is required to take full advantage of the opportunities that do exist.  Remember, the most beautiful rainbows come from the sunlight after a very dark storm.

2.  Surround yourself with positive people.

You are only as good as the company you keep.  If you’re around gloomy people, there’s a good chance you won’t be smiling.  Make it your mission to dodge negativity.  Surround yourself with supportive friends who have positive outlooks.  As they say, if you want to soar with the eagles, you have to stop hanging out with the ducks.

Optimism is a learned habit, and it is positively contagious.  Surround yourself with people who could infect you with positivity.  In turn pass your new good mood on to a friend or stranger in words and deed – let somebody have that parking space, let that person with only a few items cut in front of you at the market.  The simple act of doing something nice for others is actually a good pick-me-up all by itself.

3.  Give love, receive love, and invest in love.

LOVE:  It’s the greatest force in the universe.  It’s a treasure that people would give anything for, yet it costs nothing to give and receive. There is an endless supply, and it can be extended to family, friends and strangers at any moment.  It increases positivity and acts like a shield against negativity.  It forgives, heals, encourages and inspires.

Give love, receive love and invest in love every day.  Because where you invest your love, you invest your life.

4.  Be realistic, and expect ups and downs.

A foundation of realism keeps things in perspective, and helps prevent things from being blown out of proportion.  Just because you’re an optimist doesn’t mean you’re not going to have bad days.  You will – that’s reality.  Life isn’t always rainbows and butterflies.

Trying to be 100% positive all the time is wanting to be an ocean in which waves only rise up and never come crashing down.  However, when we recognize that the rising and crashing waves are part of the same one ocean, we are able to let go and be at peace with the way things are.

Bottom line:  Prepare for the worst but hope for the best – the former makes you sensible, and the latter makes you an optimist.

5.  Inspire yourself with a smile and positive reminders.

If you expect the worst, the worst will happen.  If you let things bother you, they will.  But if you smile, you’ll feel better.  Studies have shown that putting a cheerful smile on your face can trigger a part of your brain that actually makes you feel happier and more optimistic about the present and future.

Also, feed your optimism with positive reminders.  Write down short statements that inspire optimism.  Put them in places where you’ll see them every day, such as on your bathroom mirror, the inside of your locker, and on your computer monitor.

  • “Anything is possible.”
  • “Lead a life of positivity.”
  • “The only thing I can control is my attitude towards life.”
  • “I always have a choice.”
  • “Even the longest journey begins with a single step.”
  • “I will look at the sunny side of everything and make my optimism shine.”


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