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The Angry Optimist

saidatallI’m an optimist and I frequently get pissed off. I’m also a Buddhist, so the apparent juxtaposition doesn’t bother me. Nothing is permanent, everything is interconnected, and damn it, it’s all going to be ok!

The idea of ‘choice’ has recently come up a few times during discussions with friends, and even people who are not friends.

Choice. Choosing. Circumstance. Karmic energy. Discernment. Biscotti.

Yah, that was a choice today too, and I enjoyed one dipped in my one and only coffee of the day.

More recently I have been choosing optimism. You don’t know if you don’t try right? You can’t change your circumstance if you disengage from the world. Yet, you can’t make healthy choices if you engage with the wrong choices over and over; finances, relationship and wearing white socks for example.

Lately, I’ve liked the way that the word discernment rings a bell of mindfulness in my wee, little girl brain. I like the idea of self-respect, time and thought-management. That’s right, thought-management.

Most hurtful things have nothing to do with us, it has to do with the person you think is hurting you. It’s likely their issue, not yours. You just happen to offer a sounding-board, and you can either absorb their toxins, reflect it back, or better yet, convert that energy to something better for you.

Bad choices, selfish people, rude people, hurtful people sometimes make me sad or angry , and I’ve discovered that as I become more discerning, I also become more optimistic. Anger forces optimism. Huh?

For example, this morning started with a wash of bad news even before I made it to my writing desk. But the beauty of the darkness was that, it was not my darkness to absorb. It was darkness to reflect upon, and then choose how I would frame my day.

So the next time someone hurts you or disappoints you, or makes you angry, take a few moments to figure out what within yourself is hurt, and then go love the hell out of that wounded spot. All, day, long.  Go ahead and say the ‘F’ word if you need to. Say it a few times in different contexts if you need too.

Regardless of ‘F’ word or not, you will soon figure out that if you’re not satisfied with what you have, it will push you to something better, but you have to be angry enough to be an optimist, and that takes guts.



A little bit quirky, a lot a bit fun... Women have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to valuable experience. Throughout we history we have encouraged one another to live with courage. What better way to celebrate our gifts and wisdom than to toast our sisterhood with creativity, shared insight and laughter? Welcome to Sit down and stay a while. Invite your friends. Share your wisdom with us.

2 thoughts on “The Angry Optimist

  1. I loved this piece and there was plenty to learn from it. “Most hurtful things have nothing to do with us,” we have a choice whether or not to absorb another person’s toxins, and we should find our wound and love the hell out of it. Learning that I have choice, even over my feelings, is really what fucking sucks, & most of the time I’d rather blame Stephen Harper or fundamentalists (sorry for the redundancy). Thanks again for the great blog.

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