You know the old analogy of the glass of water being either half full or half empty. If you see the glass as half full, then you're said to be positive. If you see it as half empty, then you'd be negative.
Now, if you're an opportunist, you wouldn't care if the glass is half full or half empty. You see water, you're thirsty, and you drank it!
I LOVE being positive. It's so much better than being negative. However, instead of simply seeing the good in everything, I also want to see opportunities in every situation.
Don't have a job? Simply being positive means that you know you're going to get a job one day. Being an opportunist, however, means that you're going to use this time of unemployment to be productive in something else. Maybe you could start writing that future bestselling novel, or spend time with the kids instead of sending them to daycare, or learning new skills online (or even getting a degree or a certification online), or finding ways to make money using the skills that you have.
Your car is old with several mechanical issues. Being positive is that one day you'd have enough money to buy a better car. Being an opportunist means that you'd learn how to work on your own car RIGHT NOW.
You don't want to be just positive. You want to be an OPPORTUNIST. Sometimes, your positivism could die down. But you could always find ways to take advantage of whatever situation you're in.
So, think about it. You're trying to start a business but your credit score is bad, so you can't take out a loan. What can you do? Sit around hoping to get a loan one day? No! You find out what you can do NOW to get your business going, and one day you might make so much money that you wouldn't even need a loan.
You're broke and can't join a gym. What do you do, sit around hoping to get enough money to join a gym? No, you find out what you could do at HOME. Or find out if there are any fitness events in town that is either free or cheap.
You're down to ONE car between you and your spouse. Don't hope to one day get another car. Learn how to adapt! My wife and I had to adapt when we went down to one car. The biggest thing I've thought about was all the money we'd be saving in insurance, property tax, gas, and maintenance repairs by simply using ONE car instead of having two. Yes, we have a family a four: my wife, my two kids, and me.
Don't just be positive. Be an opportunist! Don't just see the good in everything, but also see opportunities in all situations.
There would always be bad people in the world. Don't just see the hidden good in everybody. Find ways to bring that good out of the bad people.
There would always be high taxes. Don't just see the positive in high taxes (which could be used for a police force or better schools), but find out how to adjust your life so that those high taxes won't be much of a burden to you.
There would always be crazy people on the roadways. Don't just change your perspective on them (ex: maybe the person is rushing to see a dying loved one), but work on yourself to be a more defensive driver so you could help reduce accidents -- especially accidents that could happen to you.
Being an opportunist is a proactive positive person. Don't just change your perspective on life. Make adjustments in your life so that no matter what is thrown at you, you would always find opportunities so you would ALWAYS come out on top.