If you spend time reading business advice online, you may notice a lot of attention is given to inspiration and tips for success. This makes sense for a few reasons. When you’re self-employed, you need to be your own cheerleader and motivator. Everyone has days where they may need that extra boost, and success tips and inspiration are great ways to get that little bit of extra outside motivation.
…it all comes down to that one idea that trumps everything else…
If you really take a look and analyze what writers across the globe are trying to convey, you’ll realize it all comes down to that one idea that trumps everything else. If you have this one thing right, then everything turns out okay — even when things don't happen according to your original plan. When you have it wrong, you can almost certainly guarantee failure. So what is this key ingredient to success? It's a little thing called attitude.
Here are a few ways to harness it positively so it can be an active asset for your business and personal success.
“It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect It's successful outcome.” –William James
For me, attitude is everything. If I get up in a funky mood, the rest of my day tends to mirror that funk. When I'm charged and excited about something, the outcome of whatever I'm doing usually reflects that enthusiasm. When I stumble into a case of writer's block or experience a break in creativity, I can usually trace the source of my lack of inspiration down to my attitude toward the project. In most cases, I'm putting too much pressure on myself to be a creative genius, instead of just “doing it” and working as inspiration hits me. So on a personal note, I know I can change the outcome for anything I'm doing by changing my attitude.
“To be a great champion you must believe you are the best. If you're not, pretend you are.” –Muhammad Ali
I believe fear is probably the most motivating and demotivating force a person experiences. You either react to avoid a negative outcome, or you do absolutely nothing to keep the possibility of failure at bay. This is where attitude can be a great adversary against the battle of controlling your fears. If you believe in yourself, and if you believe in the outcome of your tasks, you're taking away the power of your fear. In return, every action you do takes you one step closer to actually being who you believe yourself to be. There's a reason “fake it 'till you make it” is repeated as a mantra.
“Of all the ‘attitudes' we can acquire, surely the attitude of gratitude is the most important and by far the most life-changing.” –Zig Ziglar
There's much written on the topic of positive thinking. In fact, if you are a fan of self-help books, you'll probably find that the topic has been fairly exhausted. However, what is now getting even more of the attention is the topic of gratitude. Of all the attitudes you can have, an attitude of gratitude is the most powerful. It is the secret behind why positive thinking works. It's not just enough to hope for good things – you need to be thankful and pay forward the successes and “good things” you experience in your life. When you give from an attitude of thankfulness, your cup can't help but be overflowing with positivity. Need some proof of this? Just watch a few episodes of The Secret Millionaire.
“A healthy attitude is contagious, but don't wait to catch it from others. Be a carrier.” –Anonymous
The personal approach is only one way attitudes are important. I can be in the most amazing mood ever, and have someone be around me who is clearly having a bad day, and the mood rubs off. It may not completely ruin my mood, but it certainly dampens it for the time I'm around the other person. In this regard, I try to remember to keep an open mind and help others by keeping my mood uplifting. The next time you're feeling the stress or annoyance of something running afoul, keep things in perspective, and realize that a positive outlook will make things work more smoothly and is significantly less toiling emotionally.
There's no shortage of comparisons you can use to correlate how the relationship between success or failure and your attitude relates. If you've found that there are some areas you could improve, try one of these tips for flipping the attitude switch:
- Start your day by writing down three things you will be extremely thankful for.
- End your day by writing down three things you were thankful for.
- Before starting a task, think about what you're about to do and focus on getting mentally psyched to do great work.
- Feeling down? Force yourself to smile for a few minutes. The physical act of smiling releases endorphins that actually make you happy.
- Need to be super inspired? Be a positivity Nazi and keep negative news at bay for a while. Only let in media or information that will inspire you.
- When you're feeling bogged down, take a break and go do something just for yourself.
- If someone or something is getting you down, take a few minutes and think up positive thoughts or resolutions for being involved with the person or project.
Remember, at the end of the day you have one freedom no one can ever take away – the power of free thought. You get to choose whether to live happily or depressed. It's all a question of attitude. What's yours?