“If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair.” —C.S. Lewis
Optimism is creative fuel. Wishful thinking is lazy optimism.
Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to do anything at all, yet all of your work showed up completed each day, in a neat organized pile, ready for your manager or client to review?
Actually, no. That would be terrible. It seems like it would be wonderful, but the reality is that we all need struggle and tension in order to feel alive. There is no growth without tension. There is no gratification without challenge. We must push against something in order to develop our creative willpower.
Optimism is a belief in a better possible future, knowing that it might require some work to achieve. Wishful thinking is lazy optimism, that wants everything to “just happen”. Optimism is willing to put in the work, while wishful thinking wants to live with the delusion that things will just work out.
We need optimism in order to do creative work. Without it, we cannot take intuitive leaps. But, we are still responsible for the work necessary to bring our vision into being.
Believe in a better possible future, then develop a plan to bring it about.
Question: Are you falling into the trap of wishful thinking? Where do you need a plan?