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Th`k: attitude is everything

Th`k: attitude is everything

Do you have those moments when something stops you in your tracks, and makes you take note, and says “This is important, I better not forget this”? Well, one such occasion happened to me many years ago. I was on location for an advertising television shoot in LA. The setting was a bar/restaurant that we’d rented for the day. As most shoots go it’s a lot of hurry up and wait. As the set was being arranged and propped I started to explore the surroundings. As I made my way past the bar through to the employee-only area something caught my eye. Up on the wall, by itself was a single well aged 8x11 poster in large type. 

A couple of things struck me. First, this was important to someone. I mean to tell you this was old, torn, with yellow tape and stains, grease marks and brittle edges. So it had survived a lot. What looked like trash was something to be treasured.

Second, The writing was so simple and so true. One simple word explained. It made me think about my own life and how I had gotten through adversities or perhaps surprised myself and others with some accomplishments. I found myself nodding in agreement with each sentence.

Third, I thought about how inspiring it was, and by its placement in the bowels of the establishment, who was it meant to inspire, and wondered if it had. Obviously whoever put it up felt strongly about it. It wasn’t in a place for customers to see, it was for the employees. It made me think that the management knew that the best employees weren’t ones that you just trained and stood over to make sure that they did their job correctly. That the making of a great employee comes from within. They just needed a little reminding of that at times. Also, this was much more important than just a work reminder. It was about life and whoever put that up on the wall respected individuals and wanted them to be successful.

Lastly, as I wrote these wise words into my journal (which I carry everywhere) I realized I had no idea who wrote it and wished I knew more about the author. It wasn’t until years later that I started doing research on who it was. 

May I introduce you to Charles Swindoll, Pastor, author, and educator?

Chuck Swindoll


Through the years I have recreated the poster I saw so long ago and passed it on to students, colleagues, and friends. Fill free to do the same. 

A positive attitude can completely change your life. Think of it as an inside job. Only you are responsible for your attitude. Begin by taking full responsibility for your attitude. It’s something we can control and if necessary change each and every day of our lives depending on what we are facing that day. A great role model who had such a positive attitude in life was my father, Jack S. Harris. I remember that he often would say, son “Don’t worry about the things you don’t have any control over”, great advice. 

Some interesting information I found on the positives of developing a good attitude.

Listen up, Thnkrs: It’s time to kick negative self-talk to the curb and start developing positive self-talk techniques. Because we all know the voice inside our heads can be a bit of a wild card. With a little bit of practice, we can turn that internal dialogue into a cheerleader, rather than a grumpy old man.

First, let's remember that positive self-talk isn't about being unrealistic or living in a constant state of denial. It's about acknowledging our strengths, embracing our weaknesses, and finding ways to motivate us to be the best versions of ourselves possible. So, next time you catch yourself thinking negatively, try replacing that thought with something positive. For example, "I'm not good at this" could become "I may struggle with this, but I can improve with practice and determination."

Another trick is to talk to yourself like you would talk to a close friend. We tend to be much kinder and gentler with our loved ones than we are with ourselves. So, why not extend that same compassion and support to ourselves? You got this, buddy!

And lastly, don't be afraid to give yourself a little pep talk. Whether it's before a big presentation at work or a challenging workout, a little bit of positive self-talk can go a long way. Remind yourself of your past successes, your unique qualities, and your potential for greatness. And remember, even if things don't go exactly as planned, you are still capable and worthy of love and happiness. 

However, if you’re generally a negative person, your self-talk will be more negative.

Identifying negative thinking is the first step to kicking it to the curb. Let's dive into the four categories.

First up, Magnifying: You know the drill - your vacation was amazing, but all you can talk about is the overpriced plane ticket and the terrible food on the plane. It's like you're wearing negativity goggles that only allow you to see the bad parts of the situation. Take off those goggles, my friend, and marvel at the beauty of the rest of the world.

Next, Polarizing: Life isn't black and white, there's a whole range of colors and gray areas in between. And yet, here you are, thinking that if you're not perfect, you're an utter failure. Let me tell you a secret - nobody's perfect. So stop polarizing your thoughts and start embracing the messy, imperfect, but oh-sobeautiful parts of life. 

 Now, Catastrophizing: Oh boy, do we love to expect the worst. You spill coffee on your shirt and suddenly the rest of the day is doomed. Newsflash - accidents happen, and they don't dictate the entire course of your day. Take a deep breath, change your shirt if you can, and carry on living your best life.

Finally, Personalizing: Bad things happen, it's a fact of life. But just because your boss is in a bad mood doesn't mean it's your fault. Don't blame yourself for things that are out of your control. Instead, focus on the things you can control - your attitude and response to the situation.

There you have it, Thnkrs:. The four categories of negative thinking. Identify them, and you're one step closer to improving your self-talk. Now go forth and conquer those negative thoughts with the power of positivity and a sprinkle of witty humor. When you recognize what types of negative thinking you have, you can use the power of self-talk to help you. It doesn’t happen overnight. But with time, practice, and dedication, you can correct your negative self-talk.

So, let's start practicing those positive self-talk techniques and quit that negative self-talk cold turkey. Because let's be honest, there's already enough negativity in the world without us contributing to it. Cheers to a more positive and empowering internal dialogue!

A list of some of the health benefits of positive thinking.

  1. Healthier immune system
  2. Reduced pain
  3. Better cardiovascular health
  4. Improved mental health
  5. Improved self-esteem
  6. Increased vitality
  7. Greater life satisfaction
  8. Reduced stress
  9. Better physical well-being
  10. Increased lifespan

But one may assume that having a positive outlook helps to cope better with stress.

Positive thinking: Stop negative self-talk to reduce stress

21 Ways to Create and Maintain a Positive Attitude


Thoughtful Living

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