Monday, September 01, 2003

On Optimism

I think the inspiration behind the name of this blog would be a good place to start this series of "On ..." articles. I went through many names in my head and, as I mentioned in a comment sometime last week, I almost settled on 'Obscured by Clouds'. However, I decided that wasn't really me because it has a slightly negative, pessimistic vibe to it and I'm a optimistic sort of guy. That lead, quite naturally, to Clear Blue Skies, which I knew immediately fitted perfectly and which grows on me more and more each day.

I haven't always been an optimist. When I was younger, and bullied at school (more on that another day), I had a fairly bleak outlook on life. I was unhappy, even on the edge of depression once or twice, and unable to see it getting any better. The very model of pessimism. That gradually changed as I grew up. Life had already started to go my way but I got a big boost when I went to University. There I was able to start all over, make new friends who accepted me for who I was rather than who I had been years before and I found out that I actually liked myself.

My outlook changed dramatically during the four years I was in Manchester and Mainz. First of all it was 'que sera sera', an acceptance of what was heading my way without any thought to whether it was good or bad. That slowly became the belief that whatever else happened, there would always be good times, a thought to keep my spirits up when times were bad. Falling in love twice while I was there, falling into job after job (each one better than the last) since I left, moving into London and getting engaged and married has since moulded me into the optimist I now am. Life is going to keep on getting better. I just know it.

I know all the reasons for having a pessimistic view of life, "I'll never be disappointed" etc., but I don't think much of them any more. How can you ever truly enjoy the happy moments if you believe worse is round the corner? How can you pick yourself up when you're low if you don't think sunny days are ahead? No, pessimism isn't for me any longer, it's optimism all the way, now.

No comments: