Some of us are just born with a naturally sunny personality. If you answer texts with multiple exclamation points and smiley faces, if you find excitement in the every day and think that everything will always work out, then you’re one of those mystical beings called an optimist. People may not always understand how you can stay so cheerful when even the worst is happening, but you know there’s no other way that you would rather live. Still, that doesn’t mean that you don’t have days when you feel out of place. Here are the 10 struggles of being a 24/7 optimist.
You have delayed reactions to stress. It’s awesome to be able to face the good and the bad in life with the same cool and calm demeanor. But you may be so together emotionally and mentally that stress may take a little while to surface, and when it does, you could be blindsided. You’re so used to seeing the good in every situation that you think you can handle overworking yourself one week, and then boom, you’re out with a horrible cold the next.
It can be hard to relate to your BFFs. Our 20s are a super stressful time, no matter where you are or what path you’re forging. If you tend to be more of an optimist, then congrats, you’ve kind of alienated yourself from your closest friends. Every friend group seems to have that one girl who is all smiles and rainbows, and if that’s you, they might find it hard to relate to you, too. Sure, you’ll be there for everyone and be a good listener, but you’ll find yourself wondering why everyone is blowing things way out of proportion. You won’t understand why not everyone realizes that it’s not worth it to worry so much about everything.
You’ll be ruined by hookup culture. Don’t even try entering a casual thing with someone you met via Tinder. You’ll figure he’ll fall for you soon enough and it won’t be so casual anymore – but we all know how that goes. Your optimism will essentially be the end of you.
You’ll try to fix things with the wrong guys. The cynical ones can so easily say goodbye to relationships that aren’t working out, because they figured it would never work anyway. Your problem? The total opposite. Even if you know deep down that a guy isn’t right for you, you’ll think that you two can work through anything if you just try. But all the positive thinking in the world can’t force something to work when it’s not meant to.
You can be too confident. Is there such a thing as too much self-esteem? Unfortunately, yes. Your belief that you can do anything, get any job, score a second date, follow your dreams could come back to haunt you. No matter how much you believe in yourself (and of course you should), you will never every award and get every promotion. Be a little more realistic and you won’t be so disappointed.
Life is never all good or all bad. We try so hard to have the guy, the apartment/condo/house, the dream job, the perfect workout routine, the trendy gluten-free diet. But we can’t always have all those things at the same time. While we’re achieving fitness nirvana and have locked down the best apartment ever, we could be facing a painful break-up. You want everything to be good, all the time, but that’s never going to happen.
You won’t see the beauty in the struggle. You know how cancer survivors say they’re actually grateful that they got sick because it taught them what was important or forced them to live healthier? They’re owning their suffering and they’re okay with it. If you’re too optimistic, you’ll be blind to your own story and all the lessons that struggling can teach you. Instead of putting on a happy face that you’re working an entry-level position that bores you to tears, ask yourself why you’re still not in the industry you’ve always wanted to be in. Make it happen but don’t discount your journey and all the not-so-amazing times along the way.
People think you’re living in a dream world. Once you stop to think about all the hurt that people can be feeling at any given moment in the world, it’s a pretty sobering thought. So no wonder you want to brush that away and focus on being positive. But if someone is telling you a sad story, they want empathy and kind words. They don’t want you to say “that sucks” and move on to a brighter topic. You may mean well, but there are times when you have to listen to something depressing and offer support.
Your goals and dreams are a source of frustration. Optimistic people love goal-setting. They 100 percent think they will reach their dreams, so why not aim as high as possible? But if you believe it’s going to happen and it hasn’t yet, that can be super annoying. More realistic people can be okay with the journey and can even like the thrill of not knowing when they’re going to succeed. Adopt that attitude and you can keep the sunshine but allow for some rain, too.