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Is your glass half full or half empty? Beyond that, is it a nice glass, free of chips and discoloration? And why the focus on the glass? What about the stuff inside it? Does it taste good? Is it cool and refreshing, hot and comforting or lukewarmish and ready for the sink?
Optimists tend to take on the circumstances of life as a combination Coach/Cheerleader/Priest. They will tell you:
- None of this matters, just press on through it because in the end, it will be worth it;
- Circumstances don’t matter, only your attitude;
- Look for the good in everything, and ignore the bad;
- Expect the very best in life, and that’s what you will get;
- You can control your destiny and your attitude!
On the other hand, the Cynic will bring his Eeyore to every conversation, and will most likely:
- Talk about how unfair life is in passing out glasses;
- Spend more time looking at someone else’s glass than his/her own;
- Criticize those with more in their glass as having an unfair advantage;
- Mock those with less in their glass, as if they deserved what they were getting;
- Waste time making excuses, placing blame and dodging the future;
- Give up by passively accepting whatever situation or lot life has placed in their path.
“Optimism is the drug of youth that ignores circumstance & seeks a quick and easy high…
and it is the steady confidence of the aged who know that every sunset is only for a moment.” Page Cole
Can I offer a suggestion? Don’t be either guy/girl. Here’s why, and maybe just a word of encouragement that could help you if you find yourself on the far fringes of either of these types of people…
- Sometimes Life Just Stinks… So Don’t Whitewash It.
- Only When We Face Hard Times With Reality Can We Win Past Them.
- You Don’t Know the Future. Stop Telling People It Will Get Better. It May Not. That’s Life.
- You Can Be an Encourager Without Being Annoying or Condescending… Figure It Out.
- You Don’t Have to Have All of the Answers, Fix Everything or Defend God… So Don’t Try.
- Most of the Problems We Face ARE Temporary, So Stop Making Them Bigger Than They Are;
- No One Likes A Whiner or Someone Who is Consistently Negative. Yes, That’s Why We Avoid You;
- Growth, Real & Substantial Growth Comes to Most People Through Hard Times, Not Easy Ones;
- Life Circumstances Aren’t Dealt Out Equally or Fairly; Some Have More Than Their Share; Don’t Judge People Based on Their Circumstances, Because it’s Stupid;;
- Making Excuses, Being a Quitter or Everyone’s Critic Just Doesn’t Look Good on You.
Can we be positive in face of hard and difficult moments in life? Yes.
Is it OK to be sad, discouraged, frustrated or angry when Life kicks us in the teeth? Yes again.
But find some balance. I think it’s that simple. We’re all going to have hard times, and so are the people we love. Let’s just be authentic as we face those times, deal with the heartache, then push towards wholeness.