Do we have any other choice but to be optimistic?

Do we have any other choice but to be optimistic?

My first article appeared in Hürriyet on Oct. 23, 2010, with the headline; “Do we have any other choice but to be optimistic?”

What is being reflected in this sentence is my essential conviction in life.

Obviously all of us get into the downward spiral of pessimism, but this feeling cannot go on for a long time; its continuation is not healthy.

A lot of people around me are in the midst of a deep hopelessness and pessimism.

I feel that this situation is not limited only to my circles; looking at social media, which works as a pessimism machine, is enough to feel it.

On the one hand, there are those who have already left or are preparing to leave the country they used to call “home;” on the other, there are those who are complaining about the government. There are also those who think any criticism that does not include an insult will not serve the purpose.

This is my subjective observation, but what feeds pessimism around us is politics.

Even if the complaints were 100 percent correct (and I actually think differently), I believe political stances like “this country is finished,” “nothing will come out of his country,” serves nothing but to put people into depression.

The worst is this: When some people show a small sign of optimism or show a positive stance, the tendency is to be angry with that person.

Optimism does not have to be related to politics; saying “this year was a nice year for me” is also enough for you to be bashed and get reactions on social media.

But we have no other choice but to be optimistic in all issues, including politics.

Saying the contrary means arguing that all manners of struggle and effort to alleviate unhappiness are in vain. Let’s say you are unhappy about the things that are going bad in the country. In that case, is it better to keep complaining or struggle against things that make you unhappy? There is a famous quote attributed to Churchill: no pretext can replace success.

Those who have lost their hope that tomorrow will be better than today are people who have lost everything.

It is that hope that makes us live and makes us get up in the morning.

The calendar is man-made but Jan. 1 is still meaningful.

Nature has no calendar. It has periods. Our planet has been turning around the sun for the last 4 billion years, so neither 2015 nor Jan. 1 means anything to our planet.

We have created the calendar as humans so it makes our life easier. Once the first day of the year was March 1. Now it is Jan. 1. We have no expectations from last year other than it should finish as soon as possible.

But it is not such a bad idea to enter the new year with new hopes and even new projects.

As I said, it is hope that makes people live.

I wish all my readers a healthy, joyful but, importantly, a year where they will chase away their pessimistic feelings.