The power of hope is real… it is significant. Hope can make all the difference… the difference between success and failure and sometimes even between life and death. Anyone can harness the power of hope, if they simply choose to. The power of hope can help us to achieve our own personal goals, and it can even aid in making the whole world a better place.
When Lance Armstrong was diagnosed with cancer, even though the odds of survival were slim, his doctors reportedly gave him a 40% chance of surviving to help him keep his hopes up. He overcame the cancer, and then went on to win the grueling Tour-de-France an amazing seven times in a row! Now, when he gives advice to those who are up against insurmountable odds, he says “What other choice is there but to hope?”
Many examples can be found to show how significant the power of hope can be, and how important it is to remain optimistic and to always think positive. Sometimes, the simple act of hoping for something can make it more likely to come true. While the metaphysical aspects surrounding these implications are interesting, the power of hope can be explained in a more pragmatic manner. There are real reasons why having hope and being optimistic can help us to get good things.
For starters, being optimistic means seeing the positive side of things. They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and so to is the ability to always see good things. By seeing experiences and events from a positive point of view – by finding the proverbial silver lining – we can consider many things to be good things.
But embracing hope goes beyond simply seeing things as being positive. The power of hope can actually make good things happen – things that otherwise would not have come true. We have the power to shape the world around us, simply by putting our minds to it.
One constant in life is change, and change, like the future, represents an unknown. How we react to this unknown depends on our point of view. If we lean towards being pessimistic, we will fear change, for we expect change will bring bad things. If we lean towards being optimistic, we will anticipate change, for we will expect good things to come from it.
When we are expecting good things, we will also be looking for good things, and can thereby seize the opportunities that a pessimist would otherwise miss. Hope makes us more inclined to make the most out of whatever is available, and to do as the Chinese proverb says and build a windmill instead of a shelter when the winds of change are blowing. The act of willing, of hoping, of being optimistic, contributes to making good things happen.
When we don’t hope, we don’t try, and if we don’t try, we don’t attain. Pessimists’ negative prophecies are self-fulfilling… they expect nothing, and then they get it. While optimists can excel by making the most of whatever opportunities there are, pessimists do not even see the opportunities, for they are not even looking. The pessimist’s prophecy becomes doubly true when compared to an optimist who has already attained success.
When good things happen to us in the present, it becomes easier for us to be optimistic in the future. This means that the more we invest in being optimistic now, the easier it will be to remain positive later on. Furthermore, when we embrace optimism for long enough, it can become ingrained into every ounce of our being – our consciousness – and it can manifest itself throughout our entire life.
Donald Trump, billionaire and television celebrity, never gave up, even when he was in debt for billions of dollars. While he may have been born into a privileged lifestyle, when he came upon trouble he never gave up hope, and it was the power of hope that helped him to become one of the wealthiest humans alive today.
Throughout the course of our lives, the power of hope can be an integral part of attaining our goals and achieving success. Most successful people will tell us how important it is to stay positive and to always believe in yourself and to chase your dreams… and they are right. The state of mind we have when we approach any situation has a direct impact on the outcome. The more positive and optimistic we are, the better the outcome will be.
One interesting thing about hope is how it can transform itself into self-confidence. The more optimistic we are, the fewer doubts we have. The less doubts we have, the higher our level of confidence can become. When our level of confidence is high, we can approach anything with the positive state of mind that it takes to be successful.
For tightrope walkers, the goal is to reach the other end of the wire without falling, and it takes a calm, confident state of mind to attain the goal without error. If the tightrope walker succumbs to doubt, their fear creates the opportunity to falter.
Just like for the tightrope walkers, confidence is essential for everyone to achieve success in life. When we allow our fear to overtake us, our doubts can topple us, and we will fail to achieve our goals. Our fears can even make us not want to try anything, and if we never try, we never succeed. Hope can help us to overcome our fears, our doubts, and our insecurities, to help us find the strength and the courage to become fearless.
Every one of us can choose to embrace the power of hope, to start being optimistic, and to make positive thinking part of our daily routine. While we may never have to face the obstacles that Lance Armstrong had to face, we all have our own mountains to climb, and having hope can make it easier.
When we persist with telling ourself to always think positive, then, over time, we will be able to reprogram our brain to always think positive, and we can internalize the power of hope so that it becomes second nature to us.
Of course, being optimistic can come with a small price: the risk of being disappointed. But, if we do as Martin Luther King Jr. says, and “…accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope”, then we need not be disappointed when we fail. When we stay optimistic, we can consider failure to not be failure at all, and instead, know that it is only a learning experience that takes us one step closer to our inevitable success.
The popular Canadian singer Shania Twain knows about the power of hope, and about making the most out of a situation. Coming from an underprivileged background, she had to persevere and strive to stay optimistic, and when she got really desperate, she would “…say a few prayers, and hope for the best.” Even her stage name, which is an Ojibwa word meaning “I’m on my way”, resonates her optimistic attitude which undoubtedly contributes to her continued success.
Extending beyond just our own personal lives, the power of hope can impact entire societies, helping to shape a better world and create a brighter future for everyone. Similar to how positive thinking can help us attain goals in our own lives, the more we think positive about the future of the world, the more likely it is for good things to happen in the world. When we have hope for a better world, the power of hope can make the dream of a better world into a reality.
Next up: The Power of Hope – For Our World