As I'm nearing the end of my first week of this optimism quest, I've tried to take a step back and look at things. The first thing I realized was that even though this week should have been exhausting and had the potential to be rife with stress (due to the first week of school), I've actually been feeling pretty good. And not just happier, but more energetic, relaxed, and calmer. This is a pleasant side-effect I hadn't expected, and also something that makes me feel downright enthusiastic about continuing this journey!
So maybe it was this calmer, more relaxed state of mind that made me remember something: I wasn't always a complete pessimist. Last night when I was lying in bed, I remembered something about myself from about seven years ago, back before I had kids, had a book published, or even had an agent yet. At the time I'd been trying to get an agent for a year or two, and kept getting rejection after rejection. At the same time, I was also trying to get pregnant, at first, unsuccessfully with a pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage. I was anxious all the time, worrying about the future, worrying that nothing I really wanted in life was going to be possible. So I had this thing I'd do to make myself feel better. Every night before I fell asleep, I'd envision myself walking into the bookstore, pushing a stroller with my baby, and walking over to the shelf to find my published book. And then after a while, I started to believe that this would actually happen. And then after another while, it actually did.
So last night, I decided I'd start doing this again. And as I lay there in bed, I got a mental picture of something I've been really, really wanting to happen, but that the pessimistic side of me has refused to believe ever would. And then I fell asleep, and I had a dream about it happening. When I woke up this morning, I was convinced, for a second that it had happened. But even after I woke up a little more, I wasn't upset, because I realized I had genuinely begun to believe what I'd imagined was going to come true, eventually.
Maybe this sounds a little crazy. I'm a rational person, and I realize that we can't just imagine good things to make them come true. But I began to wonder, if we make our subconscious envision something like this, if we make ourselves, deep down believe that the things we want to happen will, do we then make a conscious effort to try harder to make them happen? By visualizing good things happening to us, do we somehow make it easier for ourselves to achieve our goals? I think we might. What do you think?