The ability to be a more optimistic person is a learnable skill anyone can develop with regular practice.
We’ll all experience bad or negative events. How we interpret those events will determine whether we’re an optimist person.
What Does it Mean to Be a More Optimistic Person?
To be a more optimistic person means to believe in future positive outcomes no matter what the situation. Optimism is a way of being.
It’s how we view our lives or the experiences we’ve had or want to have. Being optimistic is the meaning we make up or the story we tell ourselves when bad things occur.
If we are an optimistic person, we will:
- View disappointments or failures as new opportunities.
- Focus on positive outcomes.
- Have a healthy attitude.
- Take responsibility for our mistakes and correct them quickly.
- Encourage or lift others up when they are feeling down.
Learning to be a more optimistic person can change our daily experiences and bring more joy into our lives.
Benefits of Being Optimistic
Benefits of being an optimistic person include:
- Lower levels of stress.
- Having positive anticipation for the future.
- Maintaining a healthy attitude.
- Paying more attention to our health and wellness.
- Developing better relationships.
- Higher levels of motivation.
- Greater levels of self-respect and self-esteem.
- Improved problem-solving ability.
- Ability to deal with change easier.
- Having greater levels of appreciation for everything in life.
5 Things You Can Do to Be a More Optimistic Person
Here are five things you can do to be a more optimistic person. These will require focus and commitment to become a way of being.
- Do not link happiness to your achievements or success. It’s rare for anything external to give us lasting happiness. We can generate happiness any time. We don’t have to rely on achieving a goal to experience the emotions we want.
- Embrace your challenges and look for the opportunity in every situation. Challenges or problems are a sign of life. Every problem has a solution, which means a new opportunity. Our job is to focus on what’s possible. This also means making the best of any situation we find ourselves in.
- Practice using positive language. What we say to ourselves is just as important as what we say others. We have to practice self-compassion and self-forgiveness because we will make mistakes. Acknowledging ourselves for things we did well is a way to train ourselves to become an optimistic person.
- Let go of any attachment to outcomes or how things should be. As most things are beyond our control, our job is to focus on what we want. This means learning to enjoy reaching our outcomes and measuring ourselves against who we want to become.
- Commit to constantly learning and evolving. This means setting goals that will inspire and challenge us to grow. If we’re learning and evolving, it means we’re becoming the person we know we’re capable of becoming. Having clear intentions are part of the learning and evolving process.
We all have optimism within us. Sometimes, we have to remind ourselves of steps we can take to reconnect to that aspect of ourselves.
If we believe the future can be positive, we’re more likely to commit to making that a reality. As we practice being a more optimistic person, we will enjoy its benefits and live a better life.
Action Step: For the next week, as an experiment, only use positive language. This includes your self-talk and what you say to others. During interactions with other people, focus on what’s possible or on new opportunities. At the end of the week, reflect on what you experienced and whether it was different to your previous weeks.
Question: What are more things you can do to be a more optimistic person?