Optimism is a choice, a cultivated habit. It is not something handed out at birth.
Your life will not be problem-free. This isn't some conspiracy by the universe out to get you. It's just life. Asking "why me?" is the same as saying "why not someone else?" and who wants to be the person wishing ill on someone else?
Choosing to look for the silver lining makes the valleys of life more bearable. It allows you to define your life rather than allowing your circumstances to define your life.
The most effective leaders exercise optimism. They know that being cynical is the easy way out, and that choosing to be optimistic requires courage and grit.
Your problems may not change, but your perspective toward them can.
Originally published February 2013