Let’s see how your attitude activates the other keys to success. A smile is a curved line that sets things straight. – Anonymous Worry is like a rocking chair – it gives you something to do but won’t get you anywhere. – Anonymous Opportunity seems to have an uncanny habit of favoring those who have paid the price of years of preparation. – Anonymous Attitude is Everything. It’s the name of my company, and it’s a philosophy I endorse with every ounce of my being because I know first-hand how this priciple has changed my life for the better. And yet, in my travels, people come up to me and say, “Sure, attitude is important. But is it “everything”? Well… I truly believe it is. NULL Before I explain further, let’s consider the definition of attitude.
Think of your attitude as the “mental filter” through which you experience the world.
There are many filters you might have. For instance, some people see the world through a filter of optimism; others through a filter of pessimism. Some see opportunity wherever they go; others see obstacles around every corner. And, of course, most people perceive the world somewhere in between these extremes. That said, having a positive attitude gives you a significant advantage.
First and foremost, people with a psitive attitude are optimistic. They focus on “can” instead of “can’t”. They see possibilities instead of limitations.
Now, I’m the first to admit that success requires more than just a positive attitude – there are other principles you have to apply. But it all starts with attitude! Without a positive attitude, you can’t tap into any of the other success principles. Your attitude is the foundation, the starting point for your success and fulfillment. Let’s examine how your attitude activates the other keys to success:
- Confidence. Can you be confident and persuasive if you’re not optimistic? I don’t believe so. The confident person believes in his or her abilities and strides forward with the expectation of success. Others can see and feel that confidence. Negativity breeds doubt and hesitancy.
- Persistence. We all know the value of making repeated attempts until we reach our objective. Why on earth would you persist if you didn’t believe you’d succeed in the long run? Optimism leads to persistence. Negative people give up at the first sign of trouble because they feel there’s no use in making further efforts.
- Resiliency. Getting back on your feet when you’ve been knocked down – that’s surely one of the most important success principles. Those who are negative get even more pessimistic when things don’t go as planned. Positive people get frustrated temporarily, and then they look for the opportunity or learning that comes from adversity. I’ve also discovered that those who are extremely positive don’t resist life’s events, curse their fate or bemoan how bad things always happen to them. Instead they believe that everything happens for a reason. This approach helps them to overcome setbacks and “go with the flow”.
- Courage. There’s no sustained success without courage. When you believe you can do something, you have the courage to move forward despite being afraid. Negative people, on the other hand, tend to back away from their fears and thus sabotage their potential.
- Enthusiasm and Energy. Show me a person with a dynamic, positive attitude and I’ll show you someone who is energetic and, in all likelihood, enthused about what he or she is doing. These people have a spring in their step and you feel better just by being around them. How many negative people do you know that you’d describe as energetic and enthusiastic? How many negative people do you look forward to being around… just because they give you such a boost each time you’re with them? None, I’ll bet. Negativity is an energy drain, while optimism is an energy enhancer.
- Health. This is one of those relationships that you have to experience for yourself to appreciate. We all know times in our lives when we got sick because we were under significant stress and consumed with negativity. Well, when I was in my 20’s and had a negative attitude, I felt tired and battled a variety of minor ailments. The moment my attitude improved, my health improved. I looked and felt younger. The truth is, the cells of your body literally come alive when you’re positive.
- Encouraging Others. As you begin to see and use more of your own potential, you’re also able to see the greatness that lies within each individual. You have faith in the ability of others, and they pick up on that! Furthermore, the positive person is a far more effective leader. Would you want to follow someone who didn’t believe in what they were doing… or who expected a negative outcome? Of course not.
- Gratitude. When your outlook is negative, you tend to focus your attention on what is “wrong” with your life and you don’t appreciate the beauty that is all around you. As you become more positive, you’re in awe of the beauty and you walk around with a sense of wonder. Positive people appreciate everything more. They also find that they feel better when they’re dwelling on their blessings, rather than complaining and finding fault.
- Perspective. This is a logical progression from your increasing feelings of gratitude. You appreciate the many positives in your life and recognize that they far outweigh any problems or temporary inconveniences. You don’t make a big fuss over a flat tire or a lost sale because you know that they pale in importance to your health, your freedom and your friends and family.
- “Approachability”. Think of the negative people you encounter every day. These individuals have a frown and you don’t feel any warmth emanating from them. They create distance. The optimistic person, on the other hand, initiates a smile, and you tend to smile right back! You feel a certain connection with positive people and enjoy the time you spend with them.
- Spiritual Growth. People who make the commitment to develop their attitude invariably experience heightened spiritual awareness. Negative, unhappy people simply do not find a meaningful connection with a Higher Power. However, when you’re filled with positive thoughts and feelings, you begin to appreciate yourself and others more. You begin to sense that there’s a purpose behind everything and that you are part of the bigger plan. You also trust your intuition more and realize that you’re receiving guidance on your journey.
I think you’d agree that this is a pretty impressive list of characteristics.
And the way to access all of them is to build a more positive attitude. Never forget, however, that your attitude is a choice that you make every day. The quality of your life… and the impact you make in the world depends on that choice.
In the end, I think that you, too, will find that attitude IS everything! Jeff Keller
- The Incredible Impact of a Smile by Jeff Keller - September 1, 2006
- Here’s why “Attitude is Everything! by Jeff Keller - August 1, 2006