10 Life Mottos to Follow That Reject Pessimism and Encourage Optimism

This post was developed via a partnership with BetterHelp.

Pessimism is a way of thinking that looks at things from a more negative viewpoint. It often involves rejection of optimism or a “assume the worst” mindset. In all reality, pessimism makes it harder to relax, worsens work performance, and can even cause you to feel sad or fearful.

Here are 10 life mottos for you to follow that reject pessimism and encourage optimism in your life.

I Can Do Anything I Set My Mind To

Setting your mind to something and completing it is often harder than it looks. Many people feel discouraged by their own inner thoughts or things they’ve been told before. For example, perhaps their parents told them as a child that following their dream was foolish or wouldn’t gain them any satisfaction or money in life.

Optimism shows us that anything is possible, and it can also give you the confidence to try when other people doubt you. Of course, the myths we hear about certain things being unobtainable aren’t true or accurate. People who go into art careers can make thousands of dollars, and if you’re not passionate about a big traditional career in law or medicine, you likely won’t feel good doing your job.

If you believe that you can make big things happen with your future, you can.

I Am Strong, and I Am Proud of Myself

More of an affirmation, the phrase “I am strong, and I am proud of myself” is a motto to live by because it encourages self-love and self-pride. We often look to others for validation in our lives, but other people aren’t always going to be around to support us.

Sometimes things happen where you can lose relationships, and all you have is yourself and your close friends and family. During loss, you have to be able to care for yourself and know your worth. Continue to remind yourself that you are strong and that you have pride in yourself, even when you struggle. After all, you’re your own best friend!

I Will Treat Others as I Wish to Be Treated

Always live by the motto of treating others as you would want them to treat you. Being gentle with others will get you better responses from people in general and maybe change your opinion of humans overall. Seeing the good in humanity is one of the best ways to make real change in the world.

I Believe That Everyone Else Is Doing Their Best

Believe that everyone is doing their best because you are likely doing your best, too. People generally don’t want to hurt others. Many people become defensive as a defense mechanism when they’re hurt or unsure what to do. However, we all lead fairly average lives and have people we love, life stories, hurt, happiness, and experiences. We all have something to learn from each other.

Even if you don’t like someone’s way of going about something, assume that they are doing the best they can with the experience and skills they have.

I Assume Only Good Intentions Until I Am Shown Otherwise

The above point goes a little into this one as well. Assuming good intentions in people means assuming that people aren’t doing something to hurt you or someone else. Most people think they are doing what is right for themselves, their family, or for you.

If you think of it this way, you can make more informed choices about how you might react to someone whom you disagree with.

I Will Follow My Values and Morals

Always follow your values and morals, as these are your deep rules of life. They can show you what you respect from others and what you won’t accept from someone. It can also give you an idea of a possible career.

For example, if you value integrity, open communication, and deep emotional intelligence, you might enjoy being a therapist or working with children.

I Will Always Set Boundaries

Setting boundaries means respecting your limits and inner rules. It also means communicating them to others and not letting people overstep your boundaries. Setting boundaries is optimistic because it allows you to learn self-love and self-respect and know that you always have your own back, no matter what.

Setting boundaries is especially important in romantic relationships and with potential new romantic partners.

Even When Things Are Hard, I Will Persist

Pessimism teaches us to give up. However, optimism teaches us to persist, even when things are hard. Optimism encourages growth and learning, and persistence is just that.

Even if you want to give up or act out when something doesn’t go to plan, the best thing you can do is persist and continue trying. See the opportunity for change as an opportunity for growth and new experiences because that’s exactly what it is!

It’s Okay to Accept Change

You also want to be able to accept change without being pessimistic. An optimistic way to accept change in your life is by seeing it as something that moves you in a new direction. Even if the change hurts you or scares you, there may be a reason for it.

For example, you may lose a group of friends that you love dearly. However, once you’ve spent some months away from them, you realize that they were taking advantage of you and the relationship was quite one-sided. Losing them was a blessing in disguise.

I Believe in Myself

Believing in yourself is one of the best ways to meet your goals and grow as a person. It’s also optimistic. Some pessimists may say that believing in yourself is unrealistic because it requires you to believe things about your strengths that may not be currently true. However, visualization has been shown to work, which means visualizing your dreams isn’t just for silly, naïve people!


If you want to learn more about optimism and pessimism and the differences between the two, check out BetterHelp’s advice column and blog here: https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/pessimism/.