If you have ever watched the YouTuber, Hannah Hart you will know a little bit about what I mean when I say we should all “Practice reckless optimism.” Hart describes the concept of reckless optimism as “...the idea that it’s hip and cool to hope for the best and try your hardest, even though the odds might be against you.” As I’ve watched more of the Hart YouTube channel this week she’s had me thinking more about what it means to try your hardest, what social justice really means, how important it is to be yourself and how to look on the bright side of things.
Reckless optimism is something that I have decided to take into my life and adopt as one of my values and practices. Sometimes bad things happen, sometimes things don’t work out exactly as you have planned and sometimes everything you imagined something to be falls flat. Stuff happens. I tend to have trouble adjusting to change, which is something I acknowledge. Right now, I am going a larger period of change than I am used to and I have found that “practicing reckless optimism” has really helped me to begin to get through the rough patch.
To me, “reckless optimism” means appreciating what you have, seeing opportunities where before you might have only seen a downside and taking chances. As a philosophy, reckless optimism fosters growth and change which is something that I know I need in my life, as I believe many of you may need as well. While some people might dismiss this philosophy as achievable because “Blanket optimism can be perceived as such a naive thing,” but reckless optimism is different from optimism in general. The difference is in that while you need to truly believe everything will be OK and you have to have faith in that believe, you also have to put a certain amount of effort into that optimism and ensuring the outcome. Bad things happen, it doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world and things will look up eventually. And that’s what reckless optimism is all about.