Optimism and Hope are the Path to the Future: Yair Lapid

“Pessimism and cynicism are just ways to protect yourself from your fears. Optimism and hope are the way to create the world and the path to the future.”

That's what Yair Lapid, Prime Minister of Israel said as he concluded a wide-ranging interview with Lahav Harkov and Yaakov Katz published as "Yair Lapid to 'Post': Centrism will win through hope and optimism"


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I like this expression.  In my book, "Optimism: The How and Why", I share thoughts from other leaders:

Iruka A. Ndubuizu, LL.M, told me, "What makes me optimistic? I think I was born to be optimistic. I was born and named Iruka, which means the future is greater. I was born at the time of famine and war in Nigeria, and with a name like that, there's only one place to go, but forward and progressive. So my faith and my name, Iruka, which means the future is greater, is what makes me the ultimate infectious optimist that I am today."

Craig Rispin, Futurist, shared with me, "I'm an optimist because I believe in the future!"

James Pearson, CEO, City of Joondalup:  "What makes me an optimist is because I believe in the future. And to believe in the future means that you are always ready to do things today that will make life better, for yourself and for your family and for your community, tomorrow"

 Rosemary Addis, Enterprise Professor, Faculty of Business & Economics, University of Melbourne: "What keeps me optimistic is a vision for a future that is financially prosperous and in which people have access to clean water and good health and where we conserve and sustain the environment. I believe that’s a vision people can get behind as we work through these uncertain times. It keeps me grounded in the belief that we have at our disposal the capacity and ingenuity to solve the issues we face, as people and for the planet.”

Margaret Manson: "I am optimistic because our future depends on it and I am not going to let it down. It is a future built on enlightened optimism."

Johan Norberg, Author,  ‘Progress: Ten Reasons to Look Forward to the Future’: “I am not an optimist because mankind just happens to be lucky, by coincidence, but because we have built a social and political infrastructure for luck. The more eyeballs that look at problems, and the more brains that can think about how to solve them, the more problems will be solved. And in an open world, with more people than ever, living longer than ever, with more access to knowledge and with more freedom to communicate, collaborate and trade than ever, we have in effect created the biggest problem-solving machine the world has ever seen.

Kevin Kelly, Writer: "Over the long term, the future is decided by optimists"

Dena Schusterman: “I am optimistic about our future because despite so much darkness there are still those who choose to  illuminate our world by being lamplighters, igniting one soul at a time. "

Professor Paul Mazerolle, President, University of New Brunswick: Optimism for the future is the recognition that our progress as a global community requires human ingenuity, creativity, innovation, knowledge, partnerships, tolerance and values.  Progress is not inevitable.  It requires commitment, actions over words, good deeds over promises, as well as proactive responses and co-active efforts.   Despite the challenges and setbacks across the 20 century, the achievements over the past hundred years are remarkable. I am optimistic for the future because of my fundamental belief in the skills, values, and commitment of people to make a difference for the world, supported by the wider community in enacting or supplying resources and conditions to enable human flourishing to endure. Long may it continue!”

Rose Godde, Arts Leader: :I am optimistic for the future because: At the heart we humans are a solutions driven species; Empathy is the core driver for human survival; and, each generation sees the world afresh calling out the past generation's failures and successes within the context of their own changing times.

 Jorden Lam, General Counsel, Hesta: "The privilege I have to make my own choices and the freedom that comes with that choice makes me optimistic about the future and its opportunities."

 John Stanhope, when Chancellor, Deakin University: "I am extremely optimistic about our future because the creativity of people always finds a way to solve problems and change things for the better. History shows that while many problems seem insurmountable optimistic creative people make the difference. New jobs will be created, new industries will emerge and an exciting new future will continue to evolve"

Adam Bowcutt, Psychologist: “I am very optimistic and excited about the future. The opportunities that will be created as a result of technology and its integration into everyday life will be great. Barriers to entry and opportunity have been reduced due to easy access to the internet and online communities. The basis for my answer is from vision and logic and a healthy, non-fearful approach. The natural human ability to learn and adapt quickly will be valuable. Will there be big challenges? Yes. Bring on these challenges!”

Anne Crawford, Healthcare Consultant and Philanthropist: “I am very optimistic for our future. Worldwide we are seeing an improvement in people's health. Longer lifespans and more equity in wealth. The near eradication of polio is very exciting. But we still have human rights issues we need to work on. But we are discussing these issues more widely.”

Scott Hubber, Yarra Valley Water: "Optimism for me is looking at the future with a positive, can do, mindset to all things I do. This can be challenging at times, but I believe if we celebrate life’s key moments with our friends and loved ones and act respectfully and responsibly, we can all improve the world we live in for future generations."

 Dr Tammra Warby, Author, “The General Practice Exam Handbook.”“Optimism to me turns a complete roadblock into a temporary setback.   My case for optimism is that as a living expression of hope for the future, it will pull you through the toughest times of your life.  Many times in healthcare and through natural disasters, I have witnessed how optimists respond to the worst thing that has ever happened to them.  It is a deeply inspiring and admirable quality to view in action. 

 “Optimists firstly accept the reality of the situation and immediately begin workshopping the problem to solve it. They always ask, ‘What’s next?’.  Despite how hard it is to practise gratitude through pain, they remain appreciative of all that is still good in their life.  Whether facing devastation or illness, the optimist is already planning their adaptation or recovery. In the midst of the darkest times, they still bring their humour to the situation and find the lighter side. And they don’t give up, emerging from the other end as proof their hope was warranted.”

Kay Clancy, The Centre for Optimism: "It’s so easy to look through eyes that are seeing what hasn’t been achieved. An optimist looks through eyes that celebrate what has been achieved and feels excited about what else is to come. "

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