Feel Good Reads for National Optimism Month

March is Optimism month– the perfect time to reflect on what optimism is and how we can benefit from having a positive attitude. Optimists believe that events in their lives will have positive outcomes and that failures in life are simply temporary experiences. It may seem quaint to be an optimist, but optimism has been proven to have positive effects on both mental and physical health. A decades-long study by Lee et al. (2019) suggests that individuals with higher optimism live longer lives and are less affected by the negative effects of certain illnesses. In other words, being an optimist can have a huge effect on your overall quality of life.

It can take time to develop the mental skills and habits of an optimist. Practicing mindfulness, creating a vision board, or writing in a gratitude journal can all help you look on the bright side of life. For more tips on flexing your optimism muscles, verywellmind.com provides “5 Steps to Being More of an Optimist.”

In the meantime, read a book that reminds you of all the good in the world. Whether you’re looking for fiction or nonfiction, these titles are bound to make you feel warm, fuzzy, and positively optimistic.

Feel Good Fiction

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The House in the Cerulean Sea

It's Not All Downhill From Here

A Man Called Ove

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

The Switch

Feel Good Nonfiction

All Creatures Great and Small

The Comfort Book

The Invention of Nature


The Life-changing Magic of Tidying up

A Walk in the Woods


Lee, L. O., James, P., Zevon, E. S., Kim, E. S., Trudel-Fitzgerald, C., Spiro, A., ... Kubzansky, L. D. (2019, August 26). Optimism is associated with exceptional longevity in 2 epidemiologic cohorts of men and women. PNAS, 116(37), 18357-18362. doi:10.1073/pnas.1900712116]

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