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Protect Your Attitude
An important key to high productivity and effective leadership, not to mention sales and marketing success, is to have and maintain a positive attitude. Nothing else will have a greater effect on you than your attitude. Remember the saying, “You Attitude Determines Your Altitude”? It’s true.
Having a negative attitude or even a neutral, apathetic one will undermine and sabotage your efforts. There is nothing more frustrating than putting in lots of effort and getting no results. When you have a less then positive attitude it becomes difficult (if not impossible) to be the kind of person others want to do business with. You know how, when you REALLY need to make a sale, it’s almost impossible? Or when you REALLY need to be persuasive, the other person just won’t listen? People seem to sense desperation and it drives them off. The same thing happens when you have a negative attitude. You exude negativity. It causes people to avoid you. When a person is negative, they tend to focus on the obstacles rather than the opportunities and solutions. A negative mind is mired in problems, while a positive mind looks for solutions. A positive person is creative and makes the best of every situation. When a person is negative, they tend only to see the obstacles. And when someone only sees obstacles or problems, they tend to feel stress – sometimes a lot of it. In fact, when a person is feeling lots of stress, they can’t be creative (it’s one of those biochemical things). Therefore, a negative attitude thwarts creativity, progress, productivity, and leadership.
In contrast, a positive attitude allows you to deal with the inevitable challenges with creativity and resourcefulness. A positive attitude helps you experience less stress. Your attitude determines how you experience life. It either pulls you down or lifts you up. Your choice…
How does one turn a negative attitude into a positive one? The same way someone with a positive attitude maintains it. You need to eliminate the negative inputs, influences, and factors in your life and introduce positive ones. We’re bombarded with messages throughout the day and night. Some of them are good and some of them are just plain bad for you. We get “messages” from family, friends, co-workers, radio, newspaper, TV, music, the internet, billboards, books, magazines, and any number of other sources. If you don’t decide what goes into your head, then someone else will. You need to take control of what you feed your mind.
Eliminate the Negatives
• Stop reading the newspaper! Everyone acknowledges that the newspaper is mostly filled with negativity – murder, fire, war, disasters, etc. Stop feeding yourself with it! Believe me, you can’t help but be informed about major stories one way or another. We’re bombarded. There’s no need to go looking for it.
• Stop watching TV news! The same issues that apply to newspapers apply to TV news. And there’s one more caution in addition… When you go to sleep ay night, the mind starts processing the last things it was exposed to. So, what’s the dumbest thing a person can do just before they go to sleep? WATCH THE TV NEWS!!! Stop watching it.
• Stop seeking the negative on the internet! Ever hear the expression, “You get what you focus on”? If you seek out negativity, you find it and it becomes your reality. I had a friend who, as Y2K approached, was absolutely convinced that the world would come to an end (almost literally). Every night, he would spend hours on the internet reading about all the terrible things that were sure to happen at the stroke of midnight. He pleaded with me to stockpile food and water. He never spoke to me again after January 1, 2000. He really believed all his fears would come to fruition. He had sought out and focused on the negatives and came to believe them. Don’t dwell on seeking out and reading about negatives.
• Stop hanging around negative people! Ever notice that all the folks with negative, small-minded attitudes always hang out together and all the successful, big-minded people hang out together as well? Coincidence? NO! Remove yourself from the negative crowd. Avoid negative people as much as possible.
• Start hanging around positive people! Positive association is one of the keys to success. Positive association leads to creativity, partnerships, solutions, and bigger dreams. Mark Twain once said, ““Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.”
• Start reading! It’s often said that the books you read and the people you associate with determine where you’ll be in five years. Where do you want to be? Start reading books about people you admire. Read personal growth books, books on success principles, books about others who overcame challenges, and motivational books.
• Start listening! Start using your windshield time as a time to learn and grow. Instead of mindlessly listening to music or talk on the radio, pop in a tape or CD. Listen to audio books, motivational CD’s, or even music that lifts and energizes you. Create a mix of music on tape or CD that gets you and your attitude fired up for that next meeting, presentation, or prospect.
I have a list of books that I’ve read and highly recommend for anyone wanting to maintain a positive attitude and wanting to grow as a person and a leader. You can find the list on my website by clicking the Recommended Reading link: www.TheInsuranceCoach.com
By acquiring, maintaining, and protecting a positive attitude, you will see your success grow and your enjoyment of life improve. You’ll become more attractive (in every way) and will increasingly find other like-minded people to be around.
About the Author: Written by Michael Beck, “The Insurance & Advisor Coach”. Michael, an Executive Coach and Recruiting Activist, helps insurance and financial professionals succeed faster and easier. He can be reached at 866-385-8751 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit www.TheInsuranceCoach.com to learn more. Permission to reprint with full attribution. © 2006 Exceptional Leadership, Inc.