Fantastic English Expressions to Help You Stay Positive & Optimistic

English Expressions About Being Positive & Optimistic

In order to bring a little positivity into your life strictly through language, this blog post will help you to learn some great English expressions about being positive and optimistic.

We have faced extremely challenging times here in Hong Kong over the last few years. The recent outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused drastic changes to the way we live and work. It has also caused a severe blow to our economy, which was already in decline following months of political and social unrest.

The news really has all been doom and gloom. As a result, it has been difficult for even the most optimistic among us to stay positive. However, maintaining a positive mindset is a core ingredient in the recipe for coping successfully in a crisis.

“Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results.” – Willie Nelson

It strengthens your ability to face up to any challenge or hardship. It helps you emerge stronger, rather than becoming absorbed and stuck by the negativity surrounding it. Negative thoughts can divert your attention from your plans, while thinking positively can help you deal with them wisely and become more mature in the process. It is the key to success in every aspect of life.

With this in mind, we have compiled a list of English idioms that express optimism. Learn these expressions and try to use them as often as possible to help maintain a positive attitude in these trying times.

Keep your chin up

Stay positive however difficult the situation.

I know things are tough at the moment but things will soon get better, so try to keep your chin up, Stuart.

Every cloud has a silver lining

Try not to feel lost or hopeless as difficult times always lead to better days eventually. Difficult times are like dark clouds that block the sunlight. However, if you look closer at the edge of the clouds you’ll see you will see the sun shining through like a silver lining.

Sandra was devastated when her boyfriend dumped her. However, she soon learned that every cloud has a silver lining when she met the true love of her life whilst studying English in Hong Kong.

There is light at the end of the tunnel

There is an end in sight to the difficult or unpleasant situation currently faced.

I’ve been revising for my IELTS exam night and day for over 3 weeks. The exam is in three days and I’m feeling confident, so there is light at the end of the tunnel.

When one door closes, another one opens

If something you do does not work out the way you wanted it to, you will soon have an opportunity to try to succeed at something else.

When one door closes, another one opens so try not to be too disappointed at not getting a place on this month’s Intensive English course. I’ve heard there are still places on next month’s course.

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade

Try to make the best out of a bad situation.

I was sick last weekend so I couldn’t go on the Q Language field trip. However, I decided to make lemonade out of lemons and organised another trip for us all to go on next weekend.

Fight tooth and nail

Try to achieve something with great energy and determination.

The Hong Kong citizens fought tooth and nail to maintain a high degree of autonomy.

Count your blessings

Be grateful and try to appreciate the good things in your life.

Hong Kong’s peak typhoon season runs from May to September with the worse months generally being July and August. We count our blessings that most typhoons last just a day or two and often bring nothing more than heavy wind and rain.

Hang in there

A phrase used to encourage someone not to give up despite the difficulties they are facing.

Learning Chinese, like any foreign language, can be challenging at times. But hang in there as, once you’ve mastered the basics, it just gets easier with time and dedication.

Everything’s coming up roses

Life is particularly positive or beneficial at the moment; everything is going especially well.

I must say everything’s coming up roses for me lately – I’ve got a lovely new boyfriend, my Hong Kong study visa was accepted and I start my 6 month Intensive English course at the beginning of next month.

You’ve got nothing to lose

Advice for someone to take a chance on something they are unsure about because their current situation can only improve by doing so – or at least, it won’t get any worse.

If they are offering you a free trial Mandarin lesson at Q Language Centre, you should take it as you’ve absolutely nothing to lose.


If you’ve heard any other English expressions related to positivity and optimism and are not sure of their meaning or how to use them, let us know in the comments section below and we will to do our best to help you.

Reader Interactions


  1. Brandon Ang says

    When one building collapses, another building will be brand new

    When life changes, another one will be better than the old lifestyle

    My friends were experiencing changes, I told them “When one building collapses, another building will be brand new.”

  2. Oishani Goswami says



    Example: I have been traveling for 2 years and now I am off to India! At last, variety is the spice of life.

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