Optimism, The Beatles and Career Success

I was driving down the road in rural Iowa the other day listening to Sirius satellite radio and the Beatles’ You Can Drive My Car came on.  I turned up the volume and sang along.  There is a line that is one of the best pieces of career advice I’ve found in a pop song…

“I got no car and it’s breaking my heart, but I’ve got a driver and that’s a start.”

Wow, talk about optimism.

Optimism drives self confidence, one of the seven keys to life and career success I discuss in my new book Climbing the Corporate Ladder.  Tweet 42 in my career advice book, Success Tweets captures it nicely.  “Choose optimism.  It builds your confidence.  Believe that today will be better than yesterday, and that tomorrow will be better yet.”

I’m a big believer in the power of optimism.  I think it is the foundation of all self-confidence.  You can’t be self-confident if you’re not optimistic.  And, optimism is a choice.  I get up every day believing that good things will happen – and then I go about making them happen.

When I was a kid, I participated in the local Optimist International chapter’s oratory contest.  I won my section, and finished third in the state.  The topic that year was “Optimism, Youth’s Greatest Asset.”  That’s hard enough for a ninth grader to say (think Joe Pesci in “My Cousin Vinnie”), let alone write and deliver a ten-minute talk.

Optimist International is a great service organization.  They help kids build self-confidence and become more optimistic.  The Optimist Creed defines them.  It’s powerful stuff.  Take a look…

The Optimist Creed

Promise Yourself:

  • To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
  • To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.
  • To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
  • To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
  • To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
  • To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
  • To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
  • To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
  • To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
  • To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

I love The Optimist Creed.  I have it framed and hanging in my office, just above my desk.  I have made a .pdf of The Optimist Creed that is suitable for framing.  If you want a copy, just go to https://budbilanich.com/optimist.

One thing that you’ll notice about The Optimist Creed is that it is proactive.  It asks you to promise yourself to do ten things that will help you create the life and career success that you want and deserve.  It suggests that optimism is related to action – action you can take to become more optimistic and to build your career success.  I think it is some of the best career advice I’ve come across.

I do my best to live the 10 points in The Optimist Creed every day.  You should too. I especially like the fourth point – “Promise yourself to look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.”  This point goes directly to the idea of committing to taking personal responsibility for your life and career success.  I know it’s difficult to look at the sunny side of things when you’re mired in a problem or are dealing with a failure.  However, if you look for what you can learn from problems and failures, you’ll be looking at the sunny side.  More important, you’ll be on your way to making your optimism come true.

Back to the Beatles for a minute – “I got no car and it’s breaking my heart, but I’ve got a driver and that’s a start.”  That’s looking at the sunny side of things.

The common sense career success coach point here is simple.  Successful people are self-confident.  Self-confident people are optimists.  They follow the career advice in Tweet 42 in Success Tweets.  “Choose optimism.  It builds your confidence.  Believe that today will be better than yesterday, and that tomorrow will be better yet.”  The Optimist Creed is a great guide to becoming more optimistic and self-confident.  Its proactive approach to life is a great guide to creating the life and career success you want and deserve.  Remember the old saying, “Whether you’re an optimist, or a pessimist you’ll be proven right.”  I choose optimism, and suggest you do too.

That’s my career advice, prompted by a Beatles song.  What do you think?  Please take a minute to share your thoughts with us in a comment.  As always, thanks for reading my daily musings on life and career success.  I value you and I appreciate you for taking the time to read what I have to say.


PS: If you haven’t already done so, I suggest that you check out my career advice book Success Tweets and its companion piece Success Tweets Explained.  The first gives you 140 bits of career success advice tweet style — in 140 characters or less.  The second is a whopping 390 + pages of career advice explaining each of the common sense tweets in Success Tweets in detail.  Go to http://budurl.com/STExp to claim your free copy.  You’ll also start receiving my daily life and career success quotes.

PPS: Have you seen my membership site, My Corporate Climb?  It’s devoted to helping people just like you create career success inside large corporations.  You can find out about it by going to http://www.mycorporateclimb.


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