When I was a little boy, I was day dreaming quite a lot. This was paired with optimism (my father told me that I was a very open and positive child) and lead to expectations a lot of times. The final effect often was a lot of suffering after disappointment. Especially last year I read so much about living your dreams and how you could be the most successful beast ever existed. A very common delusion is that everything is feasible. The reality shows that
- only a very few people do have really big success,
- very successful people are not always final winners at the end (some even end up in jail),
- success (not only in form of money) often comes with the fear to loose it (if material success) or with the fear to get obsolete (invention, knowhow etc) and
- people tend to never get enough of success (however they define it - it is subject to change).
The reason: Misuse and misunderstanding of success, hope, confidence, positivity and the like.
Success can be defined in many particular ways and often people dream something and are optimistic to achieve everything if they just want it strongly enough. And they are "doers" first. At the final end (or earlier) on the other hand they tend to redefine success of being that what they could achieve during their life. So at the beginning there was the dream and at the end there was reality. What needs to be developed is the control instance separating dreams and hope from reality and opportunities.
After failing a lot of times because of those mistakes I started switching to a pessimistic view. To save me from suffering when coming down to reality. I expected the worst to experience positive surprises rather than disappointments. Effectively this was the other extreme I could go without proper separation of those terms. But the root mistake was basically putting too many terms and elements of life into the same pot.
The solution: Be happy and choose opportunities.
A first thing is to redefine success as "being happy" (in long-term view). Don't accept others defining success or happiness for you. Look deep into your heart and personality. You might prefer looking after children over inventing a cool gadget or you might want to show others the world or you might want to contribute with good music to this world.
Second you need separation of terms: Love (for yourself and all your peers) is a base requirement for a positive life. Hope is a difficult word and I usually don't use it. But as used in many contexts I found it is best to see hope as an overall confidence that universe is evolving in the way it should after you did your contributing duty to make everything better. You should know that nothing tends to change in a direction you desire without you taking action to contribute appropriately. Faith can be the self-confidence, drive, energy and trust to get appropriate help where needed and asked for. Expectation can be the patience to wait for the results of your work (done with pure conscience) taking effect (whatever that will be) and the willingness to learn from it. Using these terms wisely leads to balanced positivity.
Last but not least: Keep your eyes and ears open. See the opportunities in your life but be aware that you can't choose them all. So select wisely your path and know that right and wrong cannot be seen absolutely - it depends on what can bring happiness into your life. Success is not necessarily being well-known or earning a lot of money.
Related posts: In the present moment, Success with optimism AND pessimism, How to be happy, Direction over goals, Principles over rules, The main purpose, Your situation does not suck.