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How to feel optimistic about the world, according to Positive News readers

We asked you what gives you hope for the future. From the indomitable human spirit to the power of mass protest, this is what you had to say

We asked you what gives you hope for the future. From the indomitable human spirit to the power of mass protest, this is what you had to say

How to feel optimistic, according to you

Proof of progress

“I am very old and from my perspective am able to see the world continuously becoming a better place. I remember when there wasn’t any recycling, there were no food nutrition labels, people of different ethnicities did not mingle, advertising was sexist, trash was thrown into the ocean, polio was not an uncommon word, overfishing was a non-existent word, there was no internet to share scientific research. Progress on countless fronts has been constant and will continue because the magnificent human brain and the loving human heart demands it.”  Pat, Massachusetts, US

Leaning into nature 

“Every time I step outside and see nature around me, I am reminded of the miracle and abundance of life and I feel hope.”  Michael, Maine, US

The human spirit 

“The people. Not the leaders or the oligarchs, but the everyday people who have fascinating minds, love unconditionally, move through life with joy, no matter what.”  Fiona, Gibraltar, Spain

“The indomitable human spirit. Our never-ending quest to better understand the meaning of our existence.”  Liam, Ireland

The next generation 

“Witnessing the joy and playfulness of my daughter. The inspiring resilience of children. Encounters with millennial youth. Witnessing the magic that happens when people in a group connect. I facilitate mediation. The process of healing and reconnection I see again and again keeps me inspired and hopeful.”  Ivana, Germany

“Teenagers give me hope. My son is 17 and everyone at his school is open and welcoming. Trans kids are allowed to be themselves. Pronouns are respected. Everyone is treated with respect (as much respect as teens can muster).  Sue, Las Vegas, US

Young people, particularly those who protest, inspire optimism in many of you. Image: Callum Shaw

New narratives 

“Every single day I’m presented with examples of what we humans are building and dreaming and sharing: sustainable eco-communities, the questioning of capitalism and our educational systems, circular economies, the suing of oil companies and youth rising up. I see all these and it gives me hope for a fantastic future.” – Juan, Colombia

“What makes me feel optimistic is humanity’s capacity to tell stories. They allow us to dream of improbable new worlds and ways of being. They are one of our oldest technologies, stretching back to hunter-gatherers around a campfire and they provoke empathy and social change by encouraging us to imagine how things might be different.” – Pax, Wiltshire, UK 

People who protest 

“Knowing people in the climate emergency activist community who sacrifice so much on our behalf to raise the alarm.” – Adrian, Derby, UK

How to feel positive

The resilience of nature is a source of strength in tough times. Image: Christian Joudrey

Focusing on the positive 

“Paying more attention to the good and beautiful than the dark and difficult things in life makes me optimistic about the world. I find the more I do this, the more I feel hopeful and happy to live in the world as it is and the better able I am to help those in need and address life’s challenges.” – George, Auckland, New Zealand

“I work therapeutically with care-experienced children. A belief that drives me is that life can be cruel, but where there is pain, there is joy. Where there is despair, there is hope. Where there is hate, there is love. The most broken people will inspire you with the most impressive strength.” – Jay, Bedford, UK

The kindness of strangers 

“There are always helpers. If you see a picture of a tragedy that has unfolded, you will see comforters, listeners, huggers, makeshift medics. These are not heroes in capes. They are regular, everyday people exhibiting the best of humanity. Look for them. They exist all around you.” – Saskia, New Zealand

“When I see someone being kind to a stranger, by gracefully making allowances for them or offering help, it really makes me feel positive and proud of humanity.” – Liz, UK

How to feel optimistic

The indomitable human spirit in action. Image: Stephen Arnold

The beauty of life

“Life is something of a miracle: the spirit of newborn babies or toddlers, the beauty of the human spirit, the amazing amount of people with joyous hearts. Also, animals and the miracle that is nature. The facts that the phenomena of music and colour exist!” – Julian, Nottingham, UK

“Love makes me feel optimistic, love is beyond everything. When I hug my children, my husband, my relatives, it gives me a deep feeling of peace and power, despite all the pain humans are capable of.” – Céline, France

Main image: Jeremy Bishop

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