Optimism in the world today seems like a Pollyanna, rose-colored glasses, unrealistic attitude.
In the United States, we are still in the middle of an out-of-control pandemic; an utterly disheartening and frustrating election; a government that cares way more about the money than the people; out-of-control, militarized police forces murdering indiscriminately — and getting away with it; a President obsessed with dictators and hoping to become one himself; and a whole host of other insanity.
It feels very doom-and-gloom. Further, it feels a lot like optimism in the face of it is ridiculous.
Except that it’s not.
There are three facts to take into consideration as to why optimism is not ever inappropriate.
1. We live in a fear-based society
One of the reasons we’re all hyper-aware of the above issues is because this is a fear-based society in which we live. Fox News is all about hyping the fears of their viewers and making them MORE afraid. To a different and less-intentional degree, the rest of the media also hypes fear — because fear sells.
How often is the news — whatever form you consume it in — negative? This war, that disease, this horrid leader, that criminal, and on and on. It stokes the fires and makes people reactionary.
Business is often modeled this way. My wife, for example, spends 2/3 of her day putting out fires. This is largely due to poor planning and quick sales without forethought — and insufficient staff — dealing with unhappy customers. Everything is a crisis. And if you don’t meet the crisis head-on — jobs will be lost, people will be fired — or at least that’s what the fear is.
Fear sells and then is used to disempower.
One of the best ways to combat this — besides reason — is optimism. A little optimism in the face of all the fear is a light in a dark room.
The form of optimism I am writing about I’ll explain further ahead. But a fear-based society easily gives way to pessimism. And the best weapon against pessimism is optimism.
2. Consciousness creates reality
I know a lot of people disbelieve in this. Also, the whole notion gets abused and misrepresented in many ways. That, however, doesn’t make it any less true.
Consciousness creates reality. If you go into things expecting them to be shit — they will be. When you approach something expecting failure — you have set that up.
A long time ago, I drove with my sister to her first college. It was across the country from home. Before reaching the state her school was in, she was already talking about how she expected it to suck.
Spoiler alert — it did. After a semester at that college, she departed it.
If all the doom-and-gloom of the world gets into your head, it’s easy to feel pessimistic. Then your consciousness is inclined to create an undesirable reality. Hey, if you want to continue along this destructive path — who am I tell you otherwise?
Nobody wants to see it all burn. Okay, almost nobody. But knowing that consciousness creates reality, a little optimism opens you to better creation.
3. You have more power than you realize
One of the reasons this is a fear-based society is because of those “in power.” It may be fictional, but the Tarkin Doctrine from Star Wars sure as hell looks like modern government and business practices.
“Fear will keep the local systems in line.”
In government, that’s how they maintain power. Follow me or the “other” you fear will ruin your life. Of course, the irony is that those who say that are the ones actively doing things that are ruining your life. They distract while taking away your way of life for their own gain.
When it comes to business, that’s how they control workers. Toe the line or get demoted. Or have your pay get docked. Never mind that, toe the line or we fire you. And then you lose your health benefits. I know multiple people only doing their jobs because not working means they can’t maintain their lives.
So-called leaders squash optimism and use fear to maintain their power. And fear means you are frequently reacting — which makes being proactive difficult at best.
All these things are intended to disempower you. Why? Because if you feel disempowered you won’t consciously create a different reality.
Hence why optimism is never inappropriate. Because if you give in to pessimism and fear — then they win. The world burns and we wind up in one of those awful dystopian realities common to sci-fi books and films.
I don’t know about you — but living in a dystopia isn’t appealing to me.
When you are mindful and employ optimism — even in small doses — it helps give us options to move away from undesirable possibilities.
Isn’t that a contradiction in terms? No, not at all.
Take the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. If you believe the false statements around it, they are seeking to foment anarchy. Defunding the police makes us into a lawless society. All they want is to destroy for their gain.
But that’s not their message at all. They want the police held accountable. Breonna Taylor’s killers — because that’s what they are — still walk free. Almost weekly, a new story of an unarmed black person being shot — while armed white people walk around freely — hits the news.
What BLM is after is a positive change. Defunded police forces are not made toothless — they’re remade to serve and protect as was the original intent. It makes them into community servants rather than enforcers.
The whole notion of BLM is optimistic. They believe that the current situation can be made better.
Along this line, I am seeing a lot of advertisements for the coming presidential election. And this is a perfect example of optimism versus fear.
Biden’s messages are optimistic — we can work together and beat this pandemic. We can work together to make the economy work for us.
The messages from Trump? They will destroy your way of life. All they care about is anarchy and they will make everything worse. Be afraid, damn you.
I know which message I would rather partake of. The builder, not the destroyer.
If you fall for the pessimistic view of the world — you are adding that to the collective consciousness of the community. That does nobody any good, does it?
Realistic optimism is based entirely in reality. Take what is and change it to what can be. That is realistic optimism.
Is optimism inappropriate now?
Never. Optimism opens you to see potential and possibility in the world.
A little optimism is the difference between seeing a world on fire — and holding a fire extinguisher. When you have optimism, that can lead to more positivity. And the world needs more positivity.
I know it seems like this is misplaced. Yes, I know it can be a tough row to hoe. But believe me, optimism is not only never inappropriate, but helpful. Being more optimistic opens you to conscious reality creation and controlling inevitable change.
No, this is not a quick fix. But that’s because there is NEVER a quick fix. A little optimism is a little positivity. And every bit counts.
Finally — how do you want this to come out? Consider that before you poo-poo or otherwise dismiss realistic optimism.
Being optimistic isn’t hard, but it does require thought, feeling, and action.
Knowing that optimism can help direct change away from bad and towards good, does it make sense to ignore it? When you have optimism, you give yourself the ability to take a better approach to seeing a world of possibility and potential — rather than hopelessness and lack. That ultimately empowers you.
When you feel empowered, your mindfulness increases, you become more aware overall, and that can spread to people around you. This can create a feedback loop of awareness and positivity.
You can build more positive feelings and discover further reasons to feel positivity and gratitude. That can be the impetus to improve numerous aspects of your life for the better, help overcome the overwhelming negativity of the current situation, and generate yet more positivity and gratitude.
An attitude of gratitude is an attitude of immense positivity. That positivity can generate even more good energies — and that, like you, is always worthwhile.
Originally published at https://titaniumdon.com on September 14, 2020.