Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Optimist (Not)

Note: A possibly pointless post ahead. 

There was a time when I used to be an optimist. These days, whatever optimism I have seems to be laced with a certain degree of cynicism. I do not know how (or even when) this happened.

About two months ago, I met up with someone I knew from university. I haven't spoken to him since 2000 (I think), so we had a lot to catch up on, mostly working our way from the last time we spoke to what we're doing now, and in the few hours we hung out that day, there was one very obvious thing about him that stood above all others. His optimism/positivity.

This made me realise that I was a bit too cynical for my own good, and it was even worse when I started paying attention to his status updates on Facebook. The optimism just oozed out and made a grab for you with invisible fingers. 

So, about two weeks ago, I decided to inject a bit of optimism (have positive thoughts) to my life instead. I didn't know how to make such a big change at first, so I figured that I'd just stop complaining about things that I usually complain about. Was I on my way to being a better, less cynical person?

My 'optimism' lasted for a week and a half before I succumbed to whatever it is I had succumbed to that Thursday. I was so angry that I wanted to write "Arghhh" as a status update on FB, instead, in an attempt to make it a bit more positive, I wrote:

"The world is just awesome. Arghhh."


  1. people who are too optimistic annoy me and i think they are also probably on denial. optimism should be a little realistic too.

    talking about cynicism, i've been too cynical of late too :(

  2. Some people call me a pessimist, but I've always thought of myself as a realist. Optimism can be dangerous if carried too far

  3. Hahaha, nice status update. I'm a big fan of "arrrghh."

    I agree with previous comments - too much optimism is bad and phony and annoying. I think if you're generally happy or satisfied with your life, being a little pessimistic/realistic is okay. I mean, trying to force a little positivity might be good if you have overwhelming negativity weighing on you every day...but there's nothing wrong with realism. Or some crankiness.

  4. I prefer to call myself realistic whenever someone calls me a cynic. :P

  5. All excellent comments so far.

    People who are relentlessly optimistic will always end up being disappointed.

  6. Aaaaarrgh ahh that's better, there's nothing like letting your frustration out. Never trust an overly optimistic person.

  7. Ha ha! The glass is, after all, both half-full and half-empty.

  8. Jaya J: I figure I must have been pretty annoying when I was younger, too.

    nursemyra: It does seem like realism is sometimes mistaken for pessimism, unfortunately.

    Gia: Ha ha... I agree with that.

    Missed Periods: Indeed, but I'm back to crawling ;)

    DWei: Surprisingly, I don't find cynicism bad at all, though using the term realist makes it sound so much better!

    King of Scurf: I have to agree with that one, and once they suffer said disappointment, they end up being much worse cynics than others.

    Ryan: Ha ha... I should remind myself to not do so, then...

    SAW: Yes, it is...

  9. A cynic is only a frustrated optimist ;)

  10. LOL. You know, sometimes I feel like you've known me for waaaay longer than the two years we've known each other :)


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