Attitude is everything
I was talking recently to a friend who told me of someone saying to her:
“You’re great, things don’t seem to get you down or hold you back. You’re very lucky.”“No”, my friend replied, “It’s not about being lucky. It’s all about attitude. Everything doesn’t come easily to me. I have to make a lot of effort.”
Just to fill you in, this friend is someone of exceptional influence to all who come in contact with her. She never ceases to amaze me where she gets her energy and drive from as she is forever looking to the needs of others, pulling out all the stops when it comes to helping people out of a hole or enabling them to cope with a problem.
The point she makes of having to make an effort is important for all of us I believe. Nothing is ever done nor achieved without it. This is the first thing we need to accept if we are to develop and grow as human beings.
The reason this is so important is because we all have tremendous potential but it is how much of that potential we put to good use that ultimately determines what we achieve not only in terms of results but also in terms of our overall happiness.
Being happy is about how we handle the situations we find ourselves in and not about the actual situations themselves.
When working with groups I get them to look at this question through an exercise. I get them to imagine that we divide the city or town they live in, in half – one half is for the Happy People and the other half is for the Unhappy People. And I ask them to imagine telling everyone to go to the half they identify with. When they’ve done this I tell them if we did this, we would find the same kinds of people on both sides- rich and poor, healthy and unhealthy, young and old, with jobs and without jobs etc. Why?
Because it’s not the situation that determines their happiness or unhappiness but rather HOW they are handling the situation.
Two sides of the same coin
Attitude colours how we see things, which in turn influences how we deal with them, the effort we make.My friend maintains that there is no magic wand to wave over life’s challenges. She sees attitude as all-important, a bit like the golfer Arnold Palmer who famously said “the more I practise the luckier I get”.