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Attitude is a Choice

How 5 Seconds Can Change Everything

Photo by Brendan Church on Unsplash

I can still remember how I felt the morning after I read Zig Ziglar for the first time.

The day before I could have given you 10,000 reasons why I wasn’t good enough.

  • I don’t know what to say.
  • I don’t want to make anyone angry.
  • I’m not good enough to be anyone’s best friend.

Those are just a few.

That morning was different in a lot of ways. I had a nearly bulletproof attitude that no one could penetrate. I was happy because I had something solid to be happy about. I was good enough. I could succeed. I would bounce back from any setback.

I knew what I believed, and it set the course for how my day went — just like my negative attitude shaped every day before.

Every Thought Is a Virus

Scientists at the tell us we have as many as 50,000 thoughts a day (National Science Foundation).

Is it possible that every one of them is distinct from the next? Or do they come in groups?

You know the answer to that.

Someone tells you that your work stinks and that thoughts sticks in your mind like glue for the rest of the day. Try as you might, it takes work and intentionally focusing on something else to make the bad feeling go away.

Changing your mind is like taking an antibiotic. You’ve got to quit feeding the viral thought to kill it.

In the plant world, sticky thoughts are like weeds. You can’t just forget about them and expect them to die. You’ve got to pull them up by the roots. If you leave some root matter behind, you have to spray weed killer on the new growth.

Just be careful not to kill the flowers.

Plant Something New

Flowers make dull land look bright and welcoming.

You know flowers don’t just show up without human intervention. They don’t arrange themselves in neat rows on the perimeter of your house. You got to prepare the ground, plant the seeds, and water them regularly to keep them alive.

The same goes for the attitudes you choose. If you’re angry about life, that feeling will breed more angry thoughts. If you want to be happy, you’ll find a hundred reasons to be happy.

The feeling you feed and cultivate is the one that will survive and thrive.

You Get What You Expect

You can’t control what other people do.

You can influence how they’ll respond to you.

We all have mirror neurons in our brains. That’s why if someone is nice to you, you want to be nice to them. A simple compliment has the power to change the color of someone’s day — maybe even their life!

If someone is angry, that feeling will come out and poison you. They may not punch you in the face with their fist, but their words can hurt just as much. And it might make you want to give up on life altogether.

Words have power. They may not break someone’s bones, but they can crush or lift their spirits.

Choose Your Words Carefully

A lot can happen in five seconds.

You can push through the initial fear of doing something scary.

You can take a peek into the future to see how it looks after you say what you’re thinking.

You can put another block in the wall between you and your dreams.

Are you willing to take a pause before you jump?

These five second pauses are what pave the road your life takes. Dismiss them and your path will be rocky.

5 Seconds to a Life That Matters

When you need 5 seconds to think first, think about this.

How can I treat others like I want to be treated?

Your conscience will tell you the answer.

Give what you want to have. Maybe the principle of reciprocity will kick in. At least you’ll be creating the conditions for it.

What have you got to lose?

Maybe a punch in the face.

Ask this question every morning when you rise. Think about it throughout the day. Do it for 21 days and you’ll have a habit that will serve you well every day for the rest of your life.

I’d love to hear how this works for you!