looking on the bright side, seeing the best possibilities in the present situation

a.k.a. positivity

Complementary virtues

Contrasting vices

  • being a bliss-bunny (vice of excess)
  • being incautious/unprepared (vice of excess)
  • pessimism

Virtues possibly in tension

How to acquire or strengthen it

Notes and links

  • Notes on hope, optimism, and trust (David, LessWrong)
  • Benjamin Franklin has an essay on “the handsome and deformed leg” that asserts that people are always surrounded by the better and worse, and some people by temperament focus on the one, and others on the other, and that this explains a great deal about how superficially similarly-situated people have very different outlooks on life. The latter type “are continually discontented themselves, and by their remarks, sour the pleasures of society; offend personally many people, and make themselves every where disagreeable.” He says it’s a sort of habit and can be cured and reversed, (therefore a virtue, no?). Put this way it seems complementary with the sort of “charity” we offer to other people’s arguments (for instance).
  • “Optimists are more likely to engage in action-oriented, problem-focused, carefully planned coping and are more willing than pessimists to seek social support.”
  • www.skillsyouneed.com/ps/positive-thinking.html

Mentioned elsewhere


Inspirational quotes