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HPR 91 | Unapologetic Optimist

Heartrepreneur® Radio | Episode 91 | How To Become An Unapologetic Optimist With Dale Smith Thomas

HPR 91 | Unapologetic Optimist

We cannot hear above the noise. Our lives are filled with so much chaos, we have to get quiet in order to listen and be guided. Explore the quiet and listen to your inner guidance. Take that leap of faith. Step into the unknown. And learn not to apologize for choosing to be optimistic! Dale Smith Thomas talks about the concept of unapologetic optimism. As president and founder of Winners by Choice, Dale inspired thousands to choose success. Dale pulls from her real life experiences, having grown up in North Mississippi and later going on to win Mrs. Tennessee. Her real life lessons give her audience the tools to be our personal best. Her “I’ve known you all my life” personality has her audiences walking away with the belief that they can truly achieve their dreams. With Dale’s mindset, you can say yes until you have to say no.


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How To Become An Unapologetic Optimist With Dale Smith Thomas

I have a special guest and her name is Dale Smith Thomas. She is the President and Founder of Winners by Choice. She’s made her name with her empowering, enlightening, and entertaining message. Through both her books and her speaking, Dale has challenged and inspired thousands of people to choose success in all areas of their lives. A self-described unapologetic optimist, her passion for making a difference is stamped on every page of her life. Dale pulls from her real life experiences, having grown up in North Mississippi and later going on to win Mrs. Tennessee. Her real life lessons give her audience the tools to be our personal best. “I’ve known you all my life” personality has her audiences walking away with the belief that they can truly achieve their dreams. I am so excited to have you here, Dale. Thanks so much for joining me.

It’s delightful to hear your voice and be on your show.

You have so much experience. You’ve been on so many different television shows, you have books, you have everything going on out there. Tell me, how did you come to create the fact that you wanted to inspire and change people’s lives? How did that come to you?

So many people ask me that and I always say, “I didn’t choose speaking, it chose me.” Many times life gives us opportunities and we have to lean into them. I grew up in a very poor environment in North Mississippi, a very shy, insecure child. In fact, people that see what I do now speaking around the world to hundreds of thousands of people cannot believe I was that shy little girl that actually decided to put Life 101 principles to work to break out of that shell. I was trying to expand myself in my late twenties when I entered Mrs. Tennessee. I honestly didn’t think that there would be very many contestants in a competition.

There ended up being 56 my first year and my second year. I kept going back because I felt like I was learning and growing. Then the third year, I actually won. I started being invited to speak. I just started telling stories about growing up in North Mississippi where I felt like my circumstances determine my destiny. What I found out is that it’s your decisions that determine your destiny. Every time someone asks me to speak, I leaned in and I said yes. Throughout that, speaking is not my career, it’s my calling. That’s how I landed there. I trusted my path and I answered the call.

I hope that our listeners will hear those words because so many times there’s opportunity placed in front of us and we say no instead of yes.

I always say, “Just say yes until you have to say no.” There’s a funny story behind that. My family and I were invited to be on the season finale of The Simple Life. I don’t know if you remember that show, but it was Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie. They wanted them to stay in my house because I also boot camp for beauty queens. They wanted Paris and Nicole to go to the boot camp. I’m like, “No, you don’t. No, you really don’t.” They just kept pursuing me. My thought process was I will say yes until I have to say no. Actually, they presented me with a contract that I had to say no to because the contract said that they could portray me in any light they wanted, fact or fiction. I’m like, “No.” I called them and said, “Thank you very much, but no thank you.” They were dumbfounded that I was going to give up this contract. We had a little discussion and they changed the contract and I ended up doing the show. I just kept saying, “I will say yes until I have to say no.” If we will get quiet and listen to our inner guidance, we can hear that direction. We cannot hear above the noise. Our lives are filled with so much chaos and noise so we have to get quiet, turn to the quiet in order to listen and be guided. When you do that, you can take that leap of faith and step into the unknown.

I actually resonate with that. Every morning, I don’t meditate formally but I do sit that and I get really still and really quiet, and I listen. I listen to what I call my own inner guidance system. It’s your personal GPS. You’ve got to get quiet enough to hear it. That’s one of the reasons I started Good Morning, Gorgeous also, which was a funny little thing I started on stage. The way we get up every day, the way we choose our energy every day and a positive attitude is a choice, it’s not an emotion. I started asking people, “How did you get up today? Did you look in the mirror and go, ‘Good morning, gorgeous,’ or did you say, ‘Good God, good morning,’ or, ‘Oh, my God, I’m so ugly. I’m so tired,’ and it caught on?” That’s why I wrote Good Morning, Gorgeous, to empower and inspire people to get up and find the good. Even if it just makes you smile because you’ve got mascara rubbed on your eyes and there’s nothing really you can consider gorgeous, if you can say, “Good morning, gorgeous,” and laugh, then in that moment you became gorgeous. That was good.

HPR 91 | Unapologetic Optimist
Unapologetic Optimist: Good Morning, Gorgeous

That was really good. I’m going to have to read the book because that resonates with me. I didn’t get a copy of Good Morning, Gorgeous yet. I must read it.

Make sure you get one. If we’re done, you can give your address and I’ll send you an autographed copy.

I would totally love that. You describe yourself being somebody who’s an unapologetic optimist. I never heard those words. I’d love to delve into that.

First of all, I stole it from Kathy Lee Gifford. There was something describing Kathy Lee Gifford one time as unapologetic. I’m sure it was like twenty years ago. I’m like, “That’s mine now.” Sometimes people think of us optimists as these fluffy people who have taken a step out of reality, and that is just not true. We have to look at optimism as a strategy. Yes, it is the half glass full, but optimism as a strategy. Why? Because negative is normal and there were so many problems in the world because what we focus on gets bigger. An unapologetic optimist says, “Yes, it’s a problem. I will identify the problem, but I will empower the solution by looking for an answer.” Negative thinking narrows our mind and closes our possibility, and that’s scientifically proven now. The more optimistic you are, your brain opens up. You have more creativity. We don’t call in sick as much at work because your brain is always scanning for possibility. I’m telling you right now, I’m not going to apologize for living like that.

I have to ask you the other question. This one got my attention when I was looking through your materials. Explain what you believe the meaning of hope is.

Many years ago, I was speaking for like 15,000 people down in Memphis. Every time I step on the stage, regardless if it’s five people, or 50 people or 15,000 people, my belief system says I’m sent for at least one. Many may receive the message because I’m just the messenger, but there is one there that’s supposed to really hear it. I remember distinctly getting a letter from a girl that told me she was in the audience and was contemplating suicide. She said to me, “Your name should read Dale Smith Thomas, PhD, the Hope Doctor.” At that moment it hit me that real hope is helping other people excel. If you reach out and give a smile or speak a word of encouragement, you may be the only light that person sees. Regardless of what your title is that you’re listening to us, you can be a hope doctor. Go out and say, “Good morning, gorgeous,” to somebody. Say, “Have a great day.” Make that eye contact. Give them that smile and that light because you don’t know the dark place they may be walking in.

When I’m walking, whether it’s in an airport or down the street or whatever, I tend to smile. I catch people’s eyes once in a while and they smile. I don’t know what their story is, I don’t know what their situation is, but if I could help put a smile on someone’s face, that’s so meaningful.

I do a lot of work in healthcare. I have a presentation that’s going to be on the happiness factor. I was reading a story about Sam Walton from Walmart. He put into play the 10-Foot Rule. Sam’s philosophy was if you worked in his store, in Walmart, when somebody was within ten feet of you, you had to smile and say hello and make eye contact. The Walmart principle is great for all of us, if we just smile and make eye contact. How many of us, we get in an elevator and everybody’s looking at the ground like there’s lost money down there. Why is that? We’re afraid to look up and say, “Good morning.” I challenge all of you, let’s take the spirit of Sam Walton and the spirit of Disney. Disney did the same thing about creating this special place and encouraged his employees. Now Ritz Carlton does it. We can all implement that 10-Foot Rule.

What’s a good way for people to reach out and get in touch with you? Where can they get your books? I’m just excited about who you are and I can definitely understand why instantly people feel like they know you. I already feel like I have a relationship with you. I am doing a lot of traveling. We may just connect.

You need to email me so we can connect. Anybody in the audience can go to That’s my website. You can buy the book there or on Amazon or any other book retailers. Then find me, Dale Smith Thomas, on all my social media, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook. I post quotes every day, especially on Instagram, that ties to everything. I also do a Motivational Monday. It’s a motivational newsletter I send out every Monday. You can sign up for that on the site. We’re going to be adding some video things and some exciting things coming up. We’re going to be doing some Good Morning, Gorgeous workshops around the country. Hopefully I will see some of you out on the road. If you do, I’m a southern girl and I’m a hugger. You better come and hug my neck.

I resonate with you. My philosophy is heartrepreneur and it’s all about being heart to heart, being authentic, being transparent, and being in integrity. I’m listening to everything you say and I’m like, “Yes, I totally resonate with you.” You’re adding tremendous value to the way we need to behave in society and we’ve gotten away from it.

I hope to see you out on the road. If you ever want me back on your show again, all you have to do is ask. I congratulate you and I thank you for the work that you’re doing in this world to make a difference. One by one, those of us sharing message of truth and authenticity, I believe that together we can make a difference. The only way to get rid of this darkness in this world is for all of us to turn on more light.

Dale, thank you so much for being here. This has been amazing. For the audience, make sure you connect, Dale Smith Thomas. Go find her on social media. Go to her website. Definitely get a copy of her books. I’m just excited. She’s so lined up with what we are and how we do business heart to heart as heartrepreneurs. Listeners, I just want to thank you for tuning in. I want to remind you, it’s best to subscribe to the show. That way you don’t miss any episodes. Make sure you subscribe. If you’re digging the show, share it, write us some positive comments, rate us a five star, all that good stuff to pass it forward. We love all of that. I’ve got some great people coming up. In the meantime, absorb this interview and go connect with Dale Smith Thomas. Thanks for tuning in here today at Heartrepreneur Radio.


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About Dale Smith Thomas

HPR 91 | Unapologetic OptimistDale Smith Thomas is the President and Founder of Winners By Choice, Inc. and she is an international motivational speaker and author. Dale’s empowering, enlightening and entertaining message has challenged and inspired hundreds of thousands of people around the world to choose success in all areas of their lives.

In addition to traveling the world as an empowerment speaker, Dale is a frequent guest on radio and television. She has been a featured guest on The Dr. Phil Show, The Big Idea on CNBC, The Travel Channel, CMT, MTV and VH1. She was also featured on a Fox Reality Show.

Dale is a self- described unapologetic optimist and her passion for making a difference is stamped on every page of her life. Pulling from her real life experiences from growing up in North Mississippi, Dale shares “real” life lessons that give you the tools to be your personal best.

Her client list reads like a Who’s Who but her lasting impact is with her audience members. Her “I’ve known you all my life” personality has her audience members walking away with a new belief that they can truly achieve their dreams. As one of her audience members stated, “You’re name should read Dale Smith Thomas, PHD The Hope Doctor.” When asked her definition of HOPE Dale quickly sums up her life and her message. “ I believe the true meaning of Hope is Helping Other People Excel and that is my personal goal each time I am privileged to share my message.”

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