Sarah Jessica Parker on Living Life as an Optimist
Living your life as an optimist takes drive, determination, and discipline. Maintaining a consistently positive outlook is, for most, not the default setting. Humans are wired to react to circumstances as they arise in the moment, often with little time to think, assess, and frame a response. Our survival instinct is always on.
But did you know that how you react in the moment can have a long-term effect on your health? A positive, optimistic outlook goes a long way toward optimizing your health – mind, body, and spirit. Now, it’s being proven.
Through the RoC #LookForwardProject, we’re celebrating the power of optimism and its scientifically-backed impact on long-term health and wellbeing. We spoke with Sarah Jessica Parker, Actor, RoC user and long-time optimist.
Here’s what she has to say about how being an optimist has benefited her throughout her own life, her career – and how it guides her path forward.
How does optimism play a role in your life?
SJP: “I’m fortunate that I am naturally optimistic – and that I am able to choose to confront each day with that mindset. I will say that, personally, I like being hopeful because I find it makes things bearable when they are at their worst. Optimism is almost like a vitamin, or some type of battery, or something I use when I need to resurface. When things are difficult or complicated, it gives me the resilience I need. And in the good times, it pushes me to be creative, outrageous, and truly enjoy the time I get to spend just living.”
What insights have you gained from your own aging process?
SJP: “I’m much better equipped to problem solve, to appreciate, to be circumspect about all of it. To offer better advice, to hear things that aren’t necessarily pleasant or good, to hear them better. It’s like it makes sense that experience should add up. From my perspective, I think society puts a huge emphasis on youth when it comes to beauty standards, but it’s not productive. There should be no apologies. I am not trying to cover anything up with my approach to skincare, fashion, or beauty. Over the years, what I’ve gained is a recognition of being better at living and worrying less about stuff that’s not important.”
What are you looking forward to?
SJP: Honestly, I’m looking forward to what I don't know that I should be looking forward to. The surprises and mysteries and the things I'm not aware of yet. A new play, a new meal, a new person, new lines, a new character. What I don't know is coming.”
Why did you decide to partner with RoC on this project around the power of optimism?
SJP: “When RoC approached me about joining them for The RoC Look Forward Project, the goals of this campaign excited me. They were not just refreshing, but they sounded like me. The idea of focusing on the ‘joy of living’ versus ‘fear of aging’ was especially aligned with the values I find important. I find it so interesting that RoC is bringing together research and scientific experts to show the actual impact the act of being optimistic can have on our lives and our experiences of getting older.”