Guest Author - Deborah Crawford
Do you have a success attitude? Attitude is defined by Merriam-Webster as "a mental position with regard to a fact or state as in a helpful attitude, or a feeling or emotion toward a fact or state". So what is your attitude toward success?
If your success attitude is negative, it can quash your efforts to be successful. If you do not feel that you are successful, it is really hard to do the things that make you successful. You see this all the time: people who seemingly have everything they need to succeed but just cannot get there. Odds are, their attitude is to blame.
And you see the opposite: people who are successful but much less talented than others, for instance. We often wonder how that happens! Was it their education? Maybe their parents have lots of money? Perhaps they just got lucky? Again, it's likely their attitude is to blame.
Over the years I have known and worked with people from all walks of life. I have seen people from lowly beginnings rise above them to achieve their dreams. Likewise, I have seen people who seemingly had it all squander it. The difference is in almost all cases their attitude.
Attitude is so important to success. It takes a lot of hard work to make your dreams come true, and if you have a negative attitude doing that work becomes almost impossible. If you never believe you will achieve your dreams you start to think things like "What's the point? I'll never succeed, so why not just give up." And that is the path to failure.
The great news is that your attitude is entirely under your control and you can choose your attitude! It's one of the few things you do have absolute control over, too. There are a lot of circumstances and situations that are totally out of your control. But with a positive success attitude, you can, like many others before you, overcome those and still create the life you want.
Often I see people with negative attitudes who do not even realize that their problem is one of attitude. If you are constantly blaming and complaining, you could be one of them. If you know things won't work before you even try them, your attitude is maybe holding you back.
How can you turn around your attitude? It can be hard. Often our attitudes seem to be part of who we are because we've held them for so long. They do seem to "run in families" We learn at an early age to think and express ourselves like the people around us, and if their attitudes are negative, odds are, ours will be too. Take a look at your friends and family. Are they happy, positive people? If not, seriously question how their negative attitudes may have rubbed off on you.
Or perhaps you have let the stuff life throws at all of us get you down. We all go through challenges and it can be really easy to let those things color our attitudes. But those things are really no more than obstacles on an obstacle course. You have to go through them to get to the prize! They are just obstacles, not stopping points.
You can change your attitude and reap the rewards of having a better success attitude. Here are some tips to help you improve your success attitude:
1) Surround yourself with positive people. That may mean spending less time with people who bring you down, criticize you, or try to get you to join them on the "pity train". It may mean finding new friends who can help you stay motivated. I have always told young people "You are who you hang with," and that is true for adults as well. Seek out positive people and you will find your attitude and your energy improving. If you do not see uplifting people around you already, look for them in your online networks.
2) Read motivational literature. There are so many compelling, uplifting stories of people who have achieved great things despite great odds. These stories can inspire you and just like hanging out with positive people, they can infect you with positive beliefs. (Look below for two of my faves.)
3) Journal your positive experiences and your accomplishments. Keep a record of what is RIGHT with your life. What you focus on grows, so be sure to focus on the good stuff. If you do this every day, you will find that your though patterns change, too. You will see your attitude and then your results improving.
4) Believe in yourself. You have great things to offer the world. You know you do! Don't let negative attitudes talk you out of bringing your best self to the party. Affirmations and visualization exercises can truly help change your brain into one that believes and achieves.
Changing your attitude doesn't always happen overnight. Old habits die hard, but indeed they do die and they die faster when replaced with new habits. Changing your attitude is one of the most empowering, life-changing actions you can take! Start today.
For more help on changing your attitude, I recommend two of my favorite books on success attitudes:
Jeffrey Gitomer is a sales trainer and motivator. This book is chock-full of great motivational advice.
Jack Canfield has some great motivating and empowering stories in this book, and plenty of them.