What do the following have in common?
- People who create happy customers
- People who get promoted the most frequently
- Great co-workers
- Leaders with the most loyal employees
- People who are the most satisfied in their jobs
The answer, of course, is Attitude.
A positive attitude is something that everyone is capable of. It doesn’t require a specific education or skill set; and it’s not dependent on how much money you make, how good looking you are or what you do for a living. Attitude is, quite simply, a decision one makes.
So why is it that there seem to be so many people who don’t have great attitudes?
We’ve all met them: The retail employee who seems completely uninterested in the needs of customers. The employee who won’t go out of his (her) way to help a colleague. The employee who drags the entire workplace down with him. The manager who employees hate to work for. Why have they chosen to be so miserable? The answer lies in one word:
Rather than make an effort to have a positive attitude, a frightening number of people choose to live in Excuseville. You hear them all the time – trying to justify their bad attitudes with things like, “I don’t get paid enough,” “I have a bad boss,” “I have incompetent employees,” “I got in a fight with my spouse,” etc.
But here’s the thing. There are a million excuses for having a bad attitude. The reality, though, is that none of them – not one – is a legitimate justification for having a bad attitude.
Attitude Is A Choice
Attitude is a choice – pure and simple. There are countless poverty-stricken people who have fantastic attitudes. The same is true with many who have horrible upbringings or profound disabilities. I’ll never forget meeting with a former client of mine who had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He had just finished a gruelling course of chemotherapy. His hair was gone. His face was gaunt and pale. The only thing that would keep someone as describing him as ‘looking terrible,’ was the persistant smile on his face, and the steady stream of wisecracks he delivered. When I asked him how he did it, he replied simply, “Just because I feel miserable doesn’t mean I have to be miserable.”
He was an inspiration for me and many others – and a testament to how attitude is a choice we make.
Yes, sometimes, there is a lot of work involved in the decision to have a positive attitude. It’s not always easy to find the glimmer of light in a dark time. But it is there. All you need to do is look for it.
So – do you have a positive attitude? Take this quick quiz and find out!
One man says “I hate these old shoes.” Another says, “Wow! I’ve got shoes!”