a big O for Optimism


This irresistible video that aired during ESPN's broadcast of the SMU vs. Houston football game a couple of weeks ago features our fOunders Janie and Caroline’s adorable sons.  Paul Cooke (in the white) is a sophomore at SMU and Hudson Nix (in the red) is a sophomore at the University of Texas at Austin. The Mustangs went into this game with only 2 wins, while Houston was ranked #11 and was in the hunt for a playoff spot. Houston was favored by 23 points! But SMU pulled off the dramatic upset, and their fans were happy about it, to say the least. It was with this joyful image top of mind that an article called “11 Secrets of Irresistible People” came across the Facebook feed, and number 11 jumped out:

11. Irresistible people find reasons to love life.  Irresistible people are positive and passionate. They’re never bored, because they see life as an amazing adventure and approach it with a joy that other people want to be a part of. It’s not that irresistible people don’t have problems—even big ones—but they approach problems as temporary obstacles, not inescapable fate. When things go wrong, they remind themselves that a bad day is just one day, and they keep hope that tomorrow or next week or next month will be better.

This idea of problems as temporary obstacles rather than inescapable fate resonates right now, in this season of election upsets and sports upsets, of Thanksgiving and holiday spirit and the accompanying pressures of the season. Because while we can’t really control how irresistible we are, we ALL can choose to be optimistic. No matter what we are facing. We can choose to turn our attention toward somebody else and help make their day better. We can choose, when today is rough, to look toward tomorrow, or next week or next month. Optimism is really the American way. This election we just experienced was one that most everyone felt strongly about, and no matter how you felt about the result, most likely you woke up the next morning and went about your business and did the best you could and served others in your own tiny corner of the world. Because in the end you’re an optimist, and your days are about the people you love, and you look at a bad day as just a temporary setback. 

Optimists are everywhere, and you don’t have to look hard at all to find them. The beautiful girl with a scarf covering her bald head who puts aside her own physical pain to cheer for her best friend at her National Signing Day ceremony, because it is her friend’s day. She is an optimist, and her heart beats for others. The former star quarterback who steps aside gracefully, allowing the winning rookie to claim the spotlight and the glory, because it’s the rookie’s time. He is an optimist, and understands that the pain he feels right now is temporary, and next week or next month will be better. The lovely people at the next table over who bought dinner for a couple who they overheard was there celebrating their 63rd wedding anniversary. They celebrated the special day of complete strangers. They are optimists, and it makes them happy to make others happy.

It isn’t easy being a fan of a losing team. Each week seems to bring a fresh disappointment, a new way to be let down. But true fans and true optimists, like these sweet boys, leave the door open for that magical night when everything falls into place and all the negativity falls away and you are, if just for that moment, on top of the world.

If we carry one quality with us, above all others, let’s choose Optimism. Let the O’s around our wrists serve as reminders to us that life is an O-mazing adventure and to approach it, always, with the highest of hopes and Optimism. xOxO

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