When someone calls another person a “Pollyanna” it is usually meant in a derogatory way. It implies that the person only sees the positives, and ignores the negatives, in any situation — which some interpret as being naïve or denying reality. Yet the fictional Pollyanna, to whom the term refers, was an optimist who simply chose to look for the positives in every person and situation, even when others could not see that perspective. By her focusing on the good in others, even the most disgruntled and disagreeable person eventually saw the good in themselves and their own situation.
Believing in the human spirit, finding something good in everyone, and living in a perpetual state of gratitude has the power to heal the world one person at a time. With all the darkness and negativity on the planet today, a little “Pollyannaism” can go a long way. So if someone ever refers to you as a Pollyanna in a pejorative way, smile and say, “Thank you. I’m just doing my part!”