The Story of a Closet Optimist

“Everything is going to be fine,” I explain.  

“What the hell makes you think that?” She retorts, frustrated at my seemingly lackadaisical response to the issue at hand.

“I don’t know, because why wouldn’t it be fine?”

I realized recently that I am inordinately well equipped to deal with big, cumbersome issues. After coming to that self-actualization, my natural curiosity was to figure out why. A couple of days and perhaps a few beers later, it dawned on me; I have a surprisingly positive worldview.

I say “surprisingly” because for years I was convinced I was a pessimist. I was critical of mistakes my peers made, I considered the potential consequences of my actions and I had lofty but realistic goals; all things that were perceived by my classmates and friends as a negative worldview, and at times, a buzz-kill. Then life happened.

Kids who aspired to be doctors, and lawyers (insert stereotypical ideal of success here) went off to college, made mistakes, missed opportunities, lowered the bar and took another shot at it from the shameful comfort of their parents’ basement, fueled by a newfound bitterness towards life. So how did I manage to avoid these major setbacks? These unfortunate pitfalls that belittle even the seemingly strong?

I didn’t... In fact, I failed to avoid damn near every one of them.  

There was a fundamental difference between how my basement-dwelling peers and I viewed the world that helped me move past the same adversity that belittled them. I knew that everything was going to be fine, and I still do.

Some may guffaw, but I truly believe that if I work hard, remain open to new opportunities and keep a humble attitude, everything will be just fine. Yes I may stumble, and at times even fall flat on my face (I wish this was only figurative), but when you’re certain that everything will be fine, why not get back up?

“The world isn’t burning, and the sky isn’t falling. Trust me, we’ll be just fine.”