Posts Tagged ‘hard times’

Staying Optimistic During Tough Times

December 3, 2008

In the last couple weeks I spoke to high school students and business people alike. I am always amazed at how the audience receives the message of hope I deliver in those speeches.

They always ask questions about some of the personal stories I reveal in my book. They find it hard to believe that I was able to hold a level of optimism given some of the trying conditions of my youth (abject poverty, extreme instability…). I always share with those who attend that feeling good and holding a place for hope and optimism is an inside job.

No other person or event should control how they respond on the inside to outside circumstances. No matter how hard life’s punches are, we can decide to remain positive through the pain.

That includes tough economic times, losing a game or any other challenge. Each of us can learn to hold dominion over our internal feeling state. Once we learn how to do that, life becomes much less stressful and much more beautiful.


A Better Future

November 6, 2008

October was a very interesting month. Pessimistic sentiments and optimistic hopes were present in the various venues where I gave speeches and performed workshops.

I spoke in front of 3500 potential college bound students and their families at Kean University and sensed the young people’s enthusiasm.  In spite of increasing college costs and a soft job market, it was refreshing to see the “anything is possible” look in the students’ eyes. They were truly excited about the possibilities that lie in the future.

Conversely,  in the corporate world I found that many employees were overtaken by feelings of uncertainty. My message to them was that keeping an optimistic view about what is possible is even more important in these challenging times. There is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Knowing that makes the journey more enriching.

What do you think?