‘What the world gains from op­ti­mism’

The Enterprise - - Community - By RI­LEY TOWNE

Good af­ter­noon, ladies, gentle­men, and honor­able judges. Tonight I will be talk­ing to you about what the world gains from op­ti­mism. “Op­ti­mism is the faith that leads to achieve­ment. Noth­ing can be done with­out hope and con­fi­dence.” I picked this quote be­cause it was writ­ten by a very op­ti­mistic woman who changed lives for many. He­len Keller was blind and deaf, she had to learn to talk with her hands, and read braille. This quote shows that even through the dark times, op­ti­mism can help you reach your goals, help oth­ers, and lead you to a suc­cess­ful and happy life. Just like He­len Keller, my op­ti­mism changes my day, which af­fects those around me, and to­gether we can change the world so it is a pos­i­tive and peace­ful en­vi­ron­ment.

First I will be talk­ing to you about how be­ing op­ti­mistic changes my day. Do you ever have a case of the Mon­days? From per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ence, some­times you sleep in and have to rush to get ready. When things like this hap­pen, I will al­ways tell my­self that I will have a good day, I en­sure that I have all my home­work done, and that helps me have a bet­ter day. In ad­di­tion some­times I get ner­vous or start feel­ing anx­ious, but be­ing op­ti­mistic or look­ing at the bright side can turn my day around com­pletely. Re­cently I au­di­tioned at the Blue Crabs sta­dium for a chance to sing the na­tional an­them. When it was my turn, I freaked out. I for­got the words, but I still kept go­ing and fin­ished the song. I cried be­cause I felt that I did ter­ri­ble and wouldn’t get to sing. My mom and I had a talk and we were be­ing op­ti­mistic and say­ing, “Well, it could have been worse. You could not have fin­ished the song.” My op­ti­mistic out­look made my day more pos­i­tive.

Next I will be speak­ing of how be­ing op­ti­mistic can bring peace and hope to those around you. Some­times you’re hav­ing a rough day or did not get enough sleep. It can ruin your day and you could get stressed out. That hap­pens to my friends all the time. For ex­am­ple, one day we had a vo­cab­u­lary

quiz, and I was help­ing a class­mate study. She had her mind set that she was go­ing to get a low grade on the test, but I told her that if she keeps study­ing, she will get a bet­ter grade than she thinks she will get.

Last sum­mer I sang the na­tional an­them, and when I was fin­ished they gave be a Blue Crabs shirt. I saw a man in a wheel­chair and walked over to him to give him the shirt. He then told me he had can­cer. He loved watch­ing base­ball. He had ter­mi­nal can­cer and knew he was go­ing to die but still went to do the things he loved to do. That night he was watch­ing me and my friends play­ing dur­ing the game. He said that it made his night, watch­ing me do the things I love. As he was talk­ing to my fam­ily, they re­al­ized how op­ti­mistic he was. Even though he was go­ing to die, he went out and did what he loved. He was be­ing pos­i­tive and changed my fam­ily’s per­spec­tive about some things.

Last but cer­tainly not least, I will talk to you about what the world gains from op­ti­mism. I am sure you have all heard of ran­dom acts of kind­ness. If you have not, it is where you do some­thing out of your way to help some­one. If I do some­thing nice for you, such as give you my um­brella on a rainy day, you will feel happy and want to do some­thing for some­one else. This act will keep spread­ing and soon more and more peo­ple will be happy, just like a rip­ple ef­fect that spreads far and wide. For my mother’s 38th birth­day, we went around and did ran­dom acts of kind­ness.

One of the acts was putting quar­ters in the dry­ers at the dry clean­ers, or we went to a farmer’s mar­ket and passed out cold wa­ter bot­tles to the work­ers that were sell­ing things. Ev­ery time we did a nice act it made me feel happy and put a smile on the peo­ple’s faces. Also for my sis­ter’s 10th birth­day, we made pil­low­cases for the lit­tle girls in Africa. The act that we did for her birth­day shows that be­ing nice doesn’t have to be lo­cally.

In con­clu­sion, I have learned that the way I look at things, my op­ti­mism, isn’t just about me. Op­ti­mism can spread far and wide and all over the world. Mother Teresa is known as one the “great­est hu­man­i­tar­i­ans of the 20th cen­tury,” ac­cord­ing to Bi­og­ra­phy.com.

She once said, “I alone can­not change the world but I can cast a stone across the wa­ters to cre­ate many rip­ples.” My op­ti­mism is like that stone. It starts with me and then goes to oth­ers and soon it passes peace and hap­pi­ness all over the world.


Ri­ley Towne from Mar­garet Brent Mid­dle School, is the win­ner of the ju­nior divi­sion of the St. Mary’s County Fair’s speech con­test.

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