The Bright Side of Defeat

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, May 05, 2019

The Bright Side of Defeat

“Our strength does not come from our sunny days, our strength comes from the storms.”

By Glennel Hardy


In this life the first time I ever received a trophy for anything of a competitive nature was in my early twenties.  Growing up and participating in either the neighborhood YMCA or Police Explorer Programs, the most I would receive was either a “Certificate of Achievement” or a “Certificate of Participation.”   Back during that time those documents did not propel me to higher goals, they only served as honorable mentions.  When I became an adult,  that is when I took notice that any type of achievement played a purpose. Whether small or large any achievement we make in life is better than how we started.

When it comes to defeat it hurts when we lose by a little, and it also devastates us when we lose by quite a bit.  A different way of looking at defeat is like comparing it to a set of weights. Your muscles are pushing against the weights, and its being met with resistance. We can use the weights once and never succeed in our goal, or we can continue to use them and build up resistance.  We are constantly met with resistance, but we must choose either to be intimidated by it, or make it our ally.

Failure is the Price of Progress

Failure is The Price of Progress

By Glennel Hardy

December 1, 2018


If someone were to ask me what is one of my biggest fears above all, my response will be, I have a fear of failing.  I have struggled with this for quite a while, and even someone that says he does his best to remain optimistic, can still have fears.  This does not mean that I have never made an attempt to take a risk, but it simply mean that circumstances forced me to take the next step forward. 

When someone fails and takes note on how they reached that point, it allows you to exercise your ability to find out what works for you. It is true that failure comes with a hefty price tag, which is the reason why some such as myself evaluate the costs.  Everything has a price, and if you’re willing to pay the price, would you have an excellent return on your investment?  This is the question that I now ask myself.  I imagine the end result, and based on the end result am I willing to pay a little more for a positive return. 



“It’s Not Meant For You”

I have not written in a very good while. Since that time some challenging things have occurred that have tested my optimism.  Everything that is worth something at some point should be tested. This will include relationships, our perspectives, and our tolerance levels.   If we are never tested we will never grow and we remain stagnant.  Some may can recall as a child of something you may have wanted at one point in time, but you were told either by another adult or parent that ‘it’s not meant for you.”  Back then as it is today it’s one of the hardest phrases to come to terms with in life.   You truly believe that which is in front of you is meant to be, but to only learn later “it was not meant for you.”

You might become discouraged and you may ask yourself why, and you may ask what could you have done differently.  As painful as it may be at the moment that event allows us the opportunity to move forward to what lies ahead.  We cannot see what is ahead of us, but we must realize the reason why we have come so far today was because of the foundation of “It’s not meant for me” events that we have experienced.  We must remember it’s not the end, it’s only a delay in the signal for what lies ahead for us.  Keep your eye on the end result, and not necessarily on the curves in the road in getting there.


Beauty Amongst The Chaos

Optimism Thought of the Week.

“Beauty Amongst The Chaos”

Take this image that you are now looking at, and you’re climbing upwards and you’re bouncing all over the place, and it seems as though its no structure that exist. As you look upwards, you see a tangled weblike structure that appears to be never ending.

If you look outside of the weblike structure you see something beautiful. You keep climbing because you have faith that you will eventually reach that which is beautiful. The weblike structure appears to be chaos, but what appears at the very top is beautiful.

We will constantly be tossed, tested and weary. The reward for our diligence and resolve is beauty.

Look beyond the chaos.

When the Dust Settles

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, August 27, 2017

When the Dust Settles

“Our strength does not come from our sunny days, our strength comes from the storms.”

By Glennel Hardy

Here in Phoenix, Arizona we are known to experience during the summer what are known as “haboobs.”  Haboobs are gigantic dust storms that can rise several hundred feet in the air and cover the entire city.  Once the dust rises up it’s impossible to see anything in front of you.  The storm creates havoc, and generally you have to wait out the dust storm before you proceed.

Similar to these type of storms, we have our own personal “haboobs” that we have to deal with.  These type of storms in our life seem to linger, and it has a tendency of keeping us from moving forward.  The size of the storm in front of us causes us to remain motionless, and can be intimidating.

Eventually the huge storm in front of us passes, the sun reappears as if no storm ever occurred. We begin to analyze that which was once before us, and we take from the storm what matters, and we discard the rest.  Storms are not meant to intimidate, they find a way to make us stronger, and they increase our resilience and resolve.

Our strength does not come from our sunny days, our strength comes from the storms.

The Disadvantage of Looking Up

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, July 09, 2017

“The Disadvantage of Looking Up”

When I go hiking and I see the mountain that is in front of me, I try my best not to look up at the top. When you’re down below at the base of the mountain, and you take that first glance its sometime hard to imagine how you will make it up to the top.

The size of the mountain in front of us intimidates us, and when you mention the climb, and the heavy breaths, and your heart pounding, you may just want to give in. Instead of looking up at the obstacle in front of me, I look at the direct path in front of me, and my surroundings.

We certainly miss out on a lot when we have pay too much attention to the obstacle, and not enjoying the journey getting there. Obstacles are made to intimidate us, they are made to put us to the challenge, in order to get us where we need to go. After all what good is success if you can’t follow up with an extraordinary story on how you got there.

The Power of Gravity

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Power of Gravity

By Glennel Hardy


I have always had a passion for learning more about our solar system, and how the planets align, and what actually occurs up in the endless sky. Our planets above us gravitate towards their nearby environments, and most of our planets have several different moons associated with it.  For example our home planet Earth, has only one moon which is Luna, while other planets may have three or four moons each.  

Like the planets up above, we gravitate towards things or people in our environment that allows us to share energy and enthusiasm.  We are all unique in a way in which we are matched with those around us, which are fitted for the moment.  We all have those moments where our own energy has diminished, but it’s that special person that restores it.  I would consider those individuals in our lives to be our moons.  They bring the very best out of us, and our presence perfectly complements one another.

We have the ability to choose who we gravitate to, and who would bring the very best out of us.



Scarred Knees

Optimism Thought of the Week 

For Sunday, February 12, 2017

Scarred Knees

By Glennel Hardy

 When I was 7 years old my mom purchased a brand new bike for me. I remember being so excited to hop on and take it for a spin.  Having the confidence that I was a skilled rider, I took my first voyage, and fell off within a few feet from the house.  I cried and my leg was well scarred, and blood everywhere. The pain of falling down and then realizing that everyone was watching was embarrassing enough.  My next door neighbor at that time told me to pick myself back up and continue riding.  At that point I didn’t really want to ride, but I feared my neighbor more than I feared falling down again.

 It took a few more falls, but each time I fell my reflexes were stronger than before, and I would fall on the grass, instead of on the sidewalk.  The only way I became successful in riding the bike, was by learning how to master the falls, which would eventually come my way.  I was not foolish to believe that I would never fall again, but I knew ways of softening the impact.

 Over the course of my lifetime I have fell multiple times, but each time I consider of what I learned from the previous fall.  Our “scarred knees” is not to remind us how many times we fell, but it is to remind us how many times we stood back up, after each fall.



While We Have It

Optimism Thought of the Week 

For Sunday, January 22, 2017 

While We Have It

By Glennel Hardy


Today is the 200th post that has been published on The Optimistic One.  Since the very beginning of its creation, it has taken me from undergraduate through graduate school.  It has been my companion and my source to communicate to my readers over the past few years.  I struggled today on what I should write, but as I continued to ponder this thought came to mind.

It comes a time in our lives when we have a strong desire for an event to quickly pass.  We would just prefer for it to move along quickly, because it’s uncomfortable and it continued to make us weary.  As I began to give this more thought, I took notice of some things in my life I wish I had an opportunity to replay, and perhaps see things differently than I had once before.  

We have something today that may not be the most comfortable, but it will definitely make us an even better person tomorrow.



Break In The Clouds

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, January 01, 2017

Break In the Clouds

By Glennel Hardy

“The Sun will surely appear.”

– Glennel Hardy

Have you ever experienced a moment in time that things were hitting you from every direction, and that it seemed for a while that things were just not going to let up?  Your only hope was staring at your own personal sky, and have hope and anticipation that the clouds will open up, and the sun will appear once again.  Over this past year there were times in which I was patiently waiting for the sun to appear through the storm clouds.  I knew that once the sun did appear, the storm did not stand a chance, and if it did rain we would get a rainbow.

For most if not all of us this past year we have waited for the sun to appear through the clouds.  In the New Year we set goals, and make resolutions but at times beyond our control we are forced to make changes that were unexpected, that takes us to new heights.  It’s important to not lose hope that the sun will appear once again, and the storms will be forced to move on.  When the sun does appear, we will look at it and smile knowing we have the strength and energy to power forward.

Love To Be Coached

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, December 11, 2016

Love to Be Coached

By Glennel Hardy


Growing up I never remember having a mentor or coach, but I can always recall having someone that I could look up to.  I struggled in a public high school with a GPA so low, that to my other classmates that surrounded me, it was business as usual. In order to graduate from high school on time, I had to not only attend night school, I also went to summer school, and volunteered at a local hospital.  I was determined to receive my high school diploma, but I just could not envision what steps I needed to do to make it happen.

The day that I finally received my diploma, I knew at that moment that I had to keep moving along. I started college a few times along the years, but I had always put work first and I never received a degree.  At that moment in my life, I was in a desperate need to be coached.  Being coached does push you to your limits, but when you are able over a course of time look back and see where you started, you just want more coaching.

It’s important for all of us to embrace coaching.  There are so many of the unknowns, so much that we have not yet learned, that is waiting to be presented to us. If you want to unlock that which lies within us, embrace coaching.





Optimism Thought of the Week

For Saturday, October 08, 2016


By Glennel Hardy


Been thinking quite a bit of a great friend of mine that passed away just a few years back.  Girard had great dreams, and up until a month before he passed away, he shared some of them with me over a birthday dinner.  The celebration of my birthday dinner was slightly late for the month of August, but the conversation that we had, would remain with me for my lifetime.

If I would had known that it would be the last conversation I shared with him, I wondered what would I had done differently, what additional questions would I have asked.  The truth is I didn’t know of the unknown, but when he did pass away, the last conversation we had, continued to play repeatedly in my mind. What Girard taught me was the importance of time, neither of us knew, of how important that conversation would be.

We are not aware of how much time we have left, nor aware of when we will have that final conversation, or what we will leave undone. We can make the most of what we have, and we can share our wisdom with others, knowing that the most meaningful of all lessons is imminent.

We must respect time, as it’s a precious resource and when it’s gone, we will never get it back.

Small Steps Big Gains

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, September 25, 2016

Small Steps Big Gains

By Glennel Hardy


I’m a dreamer and at times I dream so much whether I am sleeping or if I am awake my mind constantly wonders of things that I can explore.  In my heart I do believe that any dream that takes place in my mind, is worth an effort on my part to entertain it. In order to make a dream become a reality it’s taking the first step in making it happen.

Taking that first step in making a dream become a reality is definitely not an easy step, or else it is true everyone would be acting upon it.  What makes that first small step intriguing to us, is the desired outcome in which we would like to have, once that dream becomes a reality.  It is vital for each small step that we take, to make note where we once were, which will give us encouragement to continue the journey on where we want to be.

If we look at our dream as wonderful but too overwhelming to pursue, small steps of celebration is needed.  Get excited over the milestones, and do not get discouraged of the distance you must travel to get there.  What gives the marathon runner the power to give it all they got, is when they notice the finish line ahead of them.

You may be closer than you think.

The Joy of Being an Underdog

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, September 04, 2016

The Joy of Being an Underdog

By Glennel Hardy


There is a joy of being an underdog.  Being an underdog allows you the opportunity to continue to thrive, making your dreams become a reality, and constantly allows you to look forward to the next milestone.  It’s sometime hard to accept not being able to win an important victory, or make the move that we envisioned.

Over time I came to the realization that winning and being on top of everything that I do, was not a reality. I did come to realize that because I did not always win, and I was not successful at everything I did, allowed me to become the person that I am today.  The person that I have become today embraces life of what I can’t see tomorrow.  I never fear tomorrow, because I have learned over time to embrace today.

The joy of being the underdog never gets boring, it never appears as what we expected, and it brings us eagerness on what tomorrow may bring.

It’s Your Picture

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, August 28, 2016

It’s Your Picture

By Glennel Hardy


This past week I had the opportunity to participate in my first canvas painting.  The art instructor displayed how the overall picture would look like, and guided us step by step on how we could mirror the image.  In the beginning we had a set of colors to choose from, and with each color she directed us on how much paint to apply. Within the first ten minutes of my painting, my art had taken on a totally different look.  It did not in any way look like the painting she displayed for us.  I begin to get frustrated not understanding why I could not mirror the image.

I kept chugging along and kept painting even though I could not figure out what direction I was going.  It was beginning to get way off course, and that’s when I stopped and pause. I had to step back to see where my creativity was taking me.  The art instructor seen that I was struggling, and she begin to pick out different things in my painting, that I never noticed. She complimented me on the colors, the way that I designed the shapes, and she added value to the painting.  The one thing that really stood out of what she said was “it’s your picture, it does not have to be exactly like the one on display.”

She provided extra pointers to increase the beauty of a painting that I thought was on its way to becoming a disaster.  I accepted her feedback and kept at it, and I was so joyous at the end that I did not give up on the picture that was now in front of me. It was not how I originally pictured it to be, but it was my picture.

Do not give up on your picture.

A Glimmer of Hope

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, July 17, 2016

A Glimmer of Hope

By Glennel Hardy


There have been several times as an adult, which I was not impressed on the outcome that came afterwards.  It’s extremely hard to fight to make something work, and then later see your investment in time and resources fall apart right in front of you.  I never understood why it was important to fail, until later on in life in which I learned how to come in agreement with failure.

Failure truly has brought me to the place where I am today, which is success. There has been several initiatives that I pursued, and each one never worked out.  The very first paper that I wrote in my first year of college in English class, I received a C minus.  I never wanted to write again because I was so sure, that the paper I wrote was excellent, but it failed. I took that grade of a C minus, and forced myself to read the feedback, and with that I ended the class with a B plus.

It is hard to see success when it seems that everything around is falling apart.  It’s very important to take note of what is failing, and identifying a new approach to make it even better.  This is not the end, it’s a work in progress and we must decide, how we will approach it.

Point of Negative Return

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, July 10, 2016 

Point of Negative Return 

By Glennel Hardy


“If we never go beyond what’s familiar to us, we miss the opportunity to seize what lies ahead of us.” – Glennel Hardy

One of my favorite past time events were the launch of the space shuttle vehicles from the Kennedy Space Center.  When it is a less than a minute before launch the main systems of the shuttle is transferred to the on-board computer system.  Within two minutes into the launch the two solid rocket boosters separate, as the shuttle continues to soar.

After four minutes into the launch, the shuttle reaches the point of “negative return”, meaning in the event of an engine failure it cannot return back to the Kennedy Space Center.  At the point of “negative return” the shuttle is flying too high, and too fast in the event of engine failure. As the shuttle continues to soar, it eventually breaks free from its main engine, as all three engines remaining pushes forward into orbit.

The analogy of this story is when I moved from Chicago to Phoenix, I had taken a risk to leave from where I was most comfortable, and went into the unknown, where I was the least comfortable.  Those that supported me, my mentors and my mom, eventually had to let me fly on my own, although I was still flying into the unknown.   I had reached a certain point in my life, where if I did feel unsure about what I was doing, there was no way I can go back from where I started (negative return), I had to continue to move forward.

The higher I reached for the stars above me, the fear of the unknown began to subside. Those that helped me reached to that point, eventually allowed me to fly on my own, and there was no turning back.

At Times We Must Walk Alone

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, June 19, 2016

At Times We Must Walk Alone

By Glennel Hardy


One of my favorite classic movies of all time was “High Noon” starring Gary Cooper.  In the movie Gary Cooper plays a sheriff in a small western town, in which he has to come face to face with someone that he placed in prison.  In the middle of the movie the sheriff attempts to recruit some of his finest citizens to help him fight the gang that is coming to shoot him, but the citizens’ fears overshadow them so much, that they leave the sheriff to fight on his own.  In the end the sheriff takes out the bad guys.

There will come a time in which the decisions that we are forced to make would be an unpopular one. You would be forced to walk alone, and fear would come after you, but with determination you will win.

How many times have you walked alone, to get where you are at today?


The Long Road Back

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, May 22, 2016 

The Long Road Back 

By Glennel Hardy


There is nothing more discouraging then when you are headed in a certain direction, and you realize that you have to turn around and go back.  I have experienced several failed attempts journeying down long roads, before realizing I was traveling down the wrong path.  Life itself has many open roads, where we have to constantly face decision points on where to go next. Experience not only provides wisdom for us, but it allows us the opportunity to go rogue, and to take on something new, where others dare to venture.

It takes courage to journey back from where we once began, but it takes extraordinary measures to venture on a new open road. Never become weary of the journey that lies ahead of you, be eager to discover something within you, that you never knew existed.

Switching Tracks

Optimism Thought of the Week

For Sunday, May 15, 2016

Switching Tracks

By Glennel Hardy


On occasion we can set our mind to accomplish those things that we envision within ourselves.  At times though we find, that as we journey towards the goal, we are forced to switch tracks, and have to set a new course. There is an obstacle that is placed before us, that prevents us to proceed down the original track.

When we come across an obstacle, there is generally a side track which will allow us a way around the obstacle, and we discover a new way to reach our destination.  The best things in life are those that come along with obstacles, which in return allows us a new way to discover an opportunity to succeed. An obstacle’s duty is not to make it easy, but to make us become wiser and to take us from average to extraordinary.