Monday, November 29, 2010

A New Look, A New Find

Photo: Google

Hello Optimists,

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and took some time to reflect on all of the things in life that you are grateful for. I know I certainly did, and I also took the time to eat more than my weight in desserts like pumpkin pie, apple pie, pumpkin roll and cookies...probably not the best idea, but I certainly enjoyed it.

After a long drive back to my apartment, I unpacked and decided to make the most of my last few hours of this holiday break by taking out one of the books I've been reading on and off for the past few weeks. Normally I reserve reading for pleasure for times when I can really concentrate on the information in the book, but I've been so anxious to read that I've started this book despite having to put it on hold through several interruptions thus far. I'm reading The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, and I am only about 100 pages in, but I'm intrigued by the information presented so far.

As you know, I love reading books on happiness and positivity, but I started reading this from a business standpoint, not so much from an optimist standpoint. Or so I thought. But as things tend to pan out, the idea of positive thinking has once again found its way into my life. As I read through a particular part in the book, I was pleasantly surprised by the quoted words of a man who was interviewed for the book. Among other powerful words, he said, "Because you know what, the power of positive thinking will overcome so many things." Those words seemed to jump out from the page, bolded and intensified as if to stress their already coincidental appearance.

Then, just a few pages later, I read about a study from another book called Emotional Contagion (and without getting too much into detail here) reveals that emotion is contagious. Gladwell then went on to use an example of smiles, saying that one person can pass their happiness on to another through this idea of contagious emotion. He could have picked any emotion or action, like yawning for instance...we all know yawning is contagious, so this would be a perfect example of this idea! But no, he chose smiles. So there I was, reading this book through the eyes of a businessperson, and suddenly found myself thinking about Optimal Optimist. It was such a great thing to have stumbled upon, and even though there was no one else around, my smile was big enough to be contagious to anyone within a 10 mile radius. Have no doubt that those page ends are folded in, marking that spot for future reference and inspiration.

So in honor of this new find, I wanted to share with you a quote that follows this "coincidence" quite closely...
Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn't know you left open. -John Barrymore
So I guess it really shouldn't have been such a surprise that these ideas of optimism and positivity find their way into my life (and into my books!). Instead, I now believe that by keeping this blog and by making optimism a way of life, I've opened the door for many other great things to have a place in my life. It's certainly a benefit of finding happiness!

Have you found that doing the things you love opens more doors for more opportunities in life?

Keep Smiling,

P.S. As you can see, I've changed my template! I wanted to change things up a bit to give the posts a cleaner look and allow the focus to be only on the words - don't want anything to distract us from our positive thoughts! What do you think? Do you like it...or dislike it? I welcome your feedback :)


  1. I really like the new look of your page. Makes it easier to que in on the optimistic thoughts!!!!!!! Loved your blog today and agree that smiling can be very contagious!

  2. I love Malcolm Gladwell, and as I read the reference to smiling, I immediately did just that! Interesting... just to read the word "smile" has the capacity to provoke one. I posted a piece on my blog (back in May, I think) called Smile Therapy. It's an optimist's tool, the smile, and it is one we must always remember we have!

  3. the new look is very clean and allows one to focus better.

    I agree about what you say about positivity. I don't care how terrible and miserable my life is, I'm going to be better off being positive about things than negative. You're doing a good job of spreading the word about optimism.

    Tossing It Out

  4. I'm glad you're enjoying The Tipping Point, it is a great book. I just finished a similar book called Comfort Healing and Joy: Secrets to living a magnificent life by David Fox, M.D. and highly recommend it. Written in a very down-to-earth style, the book shows you how to find your "bliss" and true happiness.

    I also really like the look of your new page!

  5. @Anonymous: Glad you like the new look and today's post...hope it brought you a smile :)

    @Katie: Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! Glad to hear you're also a fan of Gladwell - I have read a few comments from skeptics of his work, but I find his writing to be very interesting.
    Love your point about the smile being an optimist's right!

    @Lee: Thanks for your input on the new look and glad you like it. You have a great outlook on life- keep that positivity up! And thanks for the compliment - I'm trying to spread optimism to everyone! :)

  6. @Clark: Thanks for suggesting that book - I am putting it on my reading list right now! I am always looking for new, great reads like that, so if you ever have any more suggestions, please let me know! :)


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