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I have always been a very optimistic person. I am guilty of the phrase “whatever happens happens” coming out of my mouth a few different times, which my friends hate. I rarely think negatively about things in my life, and when I do, I try my hardest to think of at least one upside. However, it is not always that easy. Life can get bumpy, and the future can be scary, especially for us college students. I don’t know where I am going to end up when I graduate, and that is terrifying! Often, this uncertainty and worry can cause us to think about all of the bad things that can happen and the what-ifs. However, while we all go through these times of doubt and negativity, we can always choose to be optimistic. Here are a few things to consider when trying to look on the bright side of life:

Give yourself grace. Let yourself off the hook. I feel as humans we like to blame a lot on ourselves. Sometimes we don’t feel like we did enough or said the right thing. Other times, we think our thoughts are stupid and invalid. All these things are not true! Before we start thinking about life in a positive way, we need to think of ourselves in a positive way. Understand that you are a human just like everyone else, and if we feel like we are falling short or are having an emotional day, it’s okay; it happens to everyone.

Appreciate the little things. Sometimes bad days can really get to you, but not all bad days have to be filled with just negative thoughts and experiences. Maybe the weather outside is beautiful or someone smiled at you, or maybe you got to watch an episode of the TV show you have been meaning to watch. These things aren’t necessarily going to turn your bad day upside down, but they possibly could if you let them! When thinking back on your day, focus on the good little things rather than the bad ones.

Remember that tomorrow is another day. Don’t dwell on the past. You could have the worst day ever, and if you wake up the next morning and keep thinking about how horrible that day was, you might be right back where you were. Instead, let the past be the past and move on. Each day is different which means it can be better than the one before; you never know!

Seek solutions, not problems. Expecting the worst is something we all do at some point, but sometimes that can lead us to seeking out problems that either aren’t there and most likely won’t happen. Instead, focus on what a solution can be to solve that problem if it were to arise. This then is a reassurance that no matter if a problem were to arise, it will all be okay!

It is important to note that you aren’t always going to be optimistic, but in some situations, it is a good idea to strive to be. It really helps you in the long run mentally and helps you get through tough situations. Recently, I have been going through a breakup and has taken a major toll on me. Although I want to be optimistic, it is hard and almost impossible sometimes. However, I still try my best, and as a result, I have more good days than bad and find myself excited as I think positively about the future. You don’t have to be the ultimate optimist to be optimistic, so just try it out! I promise you won’t regret it.

Grace Pellock

Illinois State '22

Hey yall! My name is Grace Pellock, I am a junior here at Illinois State. I am a basic college girl who can't stop scrolling on TikTok, loves eating dino nuggets and watching romantic comedies. I have always enjoyed writing so I am so happy to be apart of HerCampus to share one of my passions with you.
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