By Dr. Russ,
Optimists never give up on their quest or mission in life. Optimists keep pursuing the goal despite how many or how high the hurdles they must leap.
I have never talked to or met Representative Charles B. Rangel, U.S. House of Representatives, but I believe based on his actions that he is a “Moment-to-Moment-optimist.”
Yesterday, June 26, 2012, Charles Rangel won re-election to be the Democratic nominee for a 22nd term in congress. Rangel represents a district in Harlem, New York’s 13th district.
I imagine Mr. Rangel has been an optimistic overcomer all his life. He has served in congress for 42 years; first elected in 1970. But, the most recent challenges that he overcame to win this re-election bid had to be the most formidable of his life.
Many said that at age 82, he should just “hang-it-up.” Instead Mr. Rangel stayed focused on his goal and life mission. He overcame the obstacles.
What were these obstacles?
- Age. He is 82.
- Censured by the House Ethics committee that found him guilty of 11 counts of ethical violations in 2010.
- Redistricting which dramatically changed the demographics of his district extending his Harlem territory to the Bronx making it pre-dominantly Hispanic.
- Three challengers were on the ballot.
An effervescent optimist, Rangel promised to prove to any doubters that he was the right choice when he said:
“If they didn’t think after 42 years that I was the best qualified, I promise them that in the next two years they’ll have no question about the fact that we elected the best.”
In the above quote, Rangel speaks humbly of his intent to serve those who were against him and to serve them well. He didn’t gloat over his victory or otherwise criticize the critics. No, instead he put forth an optimistic message that he will serve those who were for him and against him. No wonder he was re-elected.
What obstacles and hurdles are you overcoming? Have you let them get you down? If so, grab on to the attitude of Rangel and become an optimist like him.