Monday, June 14, 2010

Optimism

OK...so this may come as a surprise but I am not the world's greatest optimist. Yeah, I know...big surprise. What I call realism or reality most people call pessimism and negativity. I have always been the person to pay more attention to the cloud rather than the silver lining...the silver lining is an illusion of what MIGHT happen while the cloud is very real. I am a glass half empty kind of guy...count on what you have...not on what you might have. Is just how I have always been. I don't try to be down on it, or have a negative attitude about it...it just is what it is.

I am cautious about optimism. Optimism too often can blind you to reality...and the truth is that sometimes reality bites. I tried reading a book a very good friend lent me called The Secret. This book is all about the warm and fuzzies and happy bubblies. Tell the universe what you want and the universe HAS to give it to you. Think only positive thoughts and only positive things will happen. When you send negative thoughts negative things will happen. And apparantly, the universe is really sensitive, because wording is really important. If you say "I don't want to be in the ditch" the universe operates on a reverse psychology basis and says..Oh shit! You want to be in the ditch....here...and oooppss there you are in the ditch.

My only problem with this is that ignorance is NOT bliss. Ignoring the ditch doesn't mean the ditch isn't there...all it means is that you are shocked and unprepared for the ditch and the consequences of falling in the ditch. Reality, while not as pleasant is much more effective, in my book at least.

The only problem with realism and a realistic view of the world and life in general is that sometimes you can get jaded. Sometimes you lose the ability to dream. Sometimes you miss it when a good thing comes your way because you are so focused on "reality" that you are waiting for "the other shoe to drop" and not taking the time to enjoy what you do have.

Optimism has always reeked too much of faith to me. And those that know me know I am not a big fan of the concept of faith. The difference between optimism and faith is that optimism takes the current facts and situation and hopes for the best. Faith does not need facts...it can be based on pure fiction. Well, that is My take on it at least, but I am not here to argue semantics. The point is that I could use a little more optimism in my mindset.

As I am looking at the future I see a future that is bright. I have made some serious mistakes in my life and I have paid the consequences. My children have paid the consequences. I have, hopefully, learned some valuable lessons. As I look at the circumstances I am facing...a woman that loves me and I love...a woman that will be the first responsible partner I have ever had in my life. Children, hers and mine that are now ours, that love me and look to me for guidance. That is a lot of hope, a lot of responsibility and a lot of room for optimism.

Optimism is also a lot about perspective. I put a song here that really is what started this blog post for me yesterday. Have you ever considered that optimism is as much selling ourselves as selling other people? I think it is really a lot of us taking lemons and making lemonades...it is looking at the cards we are dealt and playing anyways...it is about well...like this kid in this song....are you pitching or hitting? (no don't go all perv on me!)



The Greatest

By Kenny Rodgers

Little boy, in a baseball hat stands in the field with his ball and bat.
Says, "I am the greatest player of them all" puts his bat on his shoulder and he tosses up his ball.
And the ball goes up and the ball comes down swings his bat all the way around
The world so still you can hear the sound, the baseball falls to the ground.
Now the little boy doesn't say a word, picks up his ball, he is undeterred.
Says, "I am the greatest there has ever been" and he grits his teeth and he tries it again.
And the ball goes up and the ball comes down swings his bat all the way around
The world so still you can hear the sound, the baseball falls to the ground.
He makes no excuses, he shows no fear, he just closes his eyes and listens to the cheers.
Little boy, he adjusts his hat, picks up his ball, stares at his bat
Says,"I am the greatest, the game is on the line" and he gives his all one last time.
And the ball goes up and the moon so bright, swings his bat with all his might
The world's as still, as still can be, the baseball falls and that's strike three.
Now it's suppertime and his momma calls, little boy starts home with his bat and ball.
Says, "I am the greatest, that is a fact, but even I didn't know I could pitch like that!"
Says, "I am the greatest,that is understood, but even I didn't know I could pitch that good!"

1 comments:

Mandy said...

Wow! You? A whole post on being optimistic? The times they are a changin...

I, Too, have tried to work on being optimistic. It's hard. It is so much easier to focus on the stresses of day to day life, how to make ends meet, etc. I look back and realize I have spent so much time worrying about these things that I have missed good moments, spent too much time obsessing over worries. I am working on it. Control what I can and go from there.

 

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