“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill. It will make or break a company…a church…a home.
The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude…I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.
And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitudes.” – Charles Swindoll
ATTITUDE is such a vital piece to a healthy mind. Whether it is a good attitude or a bad atttiude, it has the power to change your whole perspective and outlook on life. A bad attitude can make things seem so much worse than they really are and can ruin a day that could otherwise have been a progress day.
Here’s a test: For one whole day – commit to having a positive attitude and putting a positive spin on EVERYTHING. Be ridiculously positive. And then see if at the end of day, what kind of mood embraces you at the end of the day.
In order to have a healthy mind and thus a healthy life, it is important to have a healthy attitude. This doesn’t mean you have to be dillusional and oblivious to the cruelities of the world. However, making an effort to see the positive in life, in ourselves, and in others has a healing effect on our minds and souls. For example, I teach children’s gymnastics. When I first started, I would have kids run about aimlessly, make noise, and be all sorts of out-of-control. I got angry and didn’t understand why they wouldn’t just listen! I yelled and banged my hands together, put them in time out, etc. Nothing worked. I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to keep teaching, but I couldn’t deal with these darn kids!
I took a step back and realized that maybe it wasn’t the kids…maybe I just had a negative outlook and it was effecting my reaction. I reflected back to when I was their age and my most principle mission at that time. It was to have fun, laugh, play, be goofy. These kids were not acting out on purpose, they were executing their mission. As their teacher, I saw it as my responsibility to help them achieve that mission and if at the end of it they could do a cartwheel..then super. If not, at least they had fun!
Once I changed my attitude and perspective to teaching gymnastics and incorporated it in my classes, everything changed. The kids listened because they wanted to know what fun activity was next. Their teacher (me) was the goofiest person ever and they loved it..so they wanted to follow the teacher around (fixing my runaway issue). It was fabulous. I changed my attitude and started listening to the children as well instead of demanding a one-way audience. Sometimes they acted out because they were scared of a skill but too embarrassed to admit it, sometimes they were bored, didn’t hear me or understand what I wanted and didn’t know how to ask for more direction. All of these insights have made me such a better gymnastics teacher and would have never developed if I had kept my bad attitude and refused to change.
Attitude is everything. It can lift you up or bring you down. I believe it is the number one key to have a healthy mind and thus a healthy life.