I was so excited to start my Senior year with a new promotion as the Senior Resident Advisor second in charge of a staff of 12 RAs and a building of 400 residents. I walk into my private RA bedroom for the first time and see a second bed wedged into the room… “What the heck?” was similar to the words I used. Come to find out I now had been graced with the opportunity to have a freshman roommate who was part of the large overflow of incoming freshmen that at the time did not have a room. Many other RAs across campus had also been given this opportunity, leading many to decide that maybe RA life was not for them. I had a decision to make, but as the leader of a building and silver lining kind of guy, I knew I had to stay, lead by example, and maintain a positive attitude.
That does not mean I had to be happy about it when, a week later, when my new 18 year old roommate moved into my 90 square foot bedroom. I introduced myself and decided to give him time to move into our humble abode. I came back to the room to meet my roomie’s Mom and Uncle. The Uncle looked at me and says “Oh, you are in my class this semester, this is my nephew make sure to take care of him, and I will see you on Tuesday”. What the heck? This just happened to be Quint Tatro, who had a reputation of a rock star in the financial world and the professor of one of the hardest classes in Gatton School of Business. No pressure. Again, a decision to make, positive or negative.
Long story short, three weeks later a room opened-up and the freshman moved out. We kept in touch and he is currently doing an amazing job as a resident advisor himself. Also, I go to work for his uncle every day and love my job. What does this have to do with finances? Maybe not much, but I know that my positive attitude has opened many doors that a negative one keeps shut. Whether it was observing my residents for three years or looking at the attitudes of coworkers and friends, I have noticed a very common theme. Those people that could maintain a positive attitude and push themselves through difficult situations tend to find that things work out in the end. Those that choose a negative one have the ability to make any situation seem dimmer than it is.
The pandemic has given all of us reasons to be pessimistic, the news, your friends, and social media will give you plenty of opportunities to see the negative side of things, whether it is in the markets or anything else. I challenge you to remain optimistic. The markets are at all-time highs, 40% of the US population has received a vaccine shot, people are going back to work, and the Rangers just sold out a home opener. The glass has never been more half full.