Possessing A Positive Attitude


Attitude ConceptIn all my years of leadership, there is one thing I have consistently experienced and that is…you learn 95% of what you teach. So as I write about the team value of positive attitude, be certain that I am writing to myself as much as I am writing to you. As the author of this post on Possessing A Positive Attitude, it might surprise you to learn that there are days when I have a negative attitude lurking inside of me all ready and willing to express itself. And by the way, so do you.

Possessing A Positive Attitude Can Do Great Good Or A Negative Attitude Can Do Great Harm

The really neat thing about the attitude lurking inside of me and you…and the really scary thing for that matter…is that my attitude, your attitude…has the potential to do more good or harm than we probably realize or even fully appreciate. Let me share with you what Chuck Swindoll has written about Attitude:

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.  Attitude, to me, is more important than facts.  It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think, say or do.  It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill.  It will make or break a company… a church… a home.  The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we embrace for that day.  We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way.  We cannot change the inevitable.  The only thing we can do is play the one string we have, and that is our attitude… I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our Attitudes”

Possessing A Positive Attitude Is A Great Responsibility And A Great Choice

When I think about people and the kind of attitude we have towards our own attitudes, unfortunately, I see far too many people having a half-hearted attitude. A couple of months ago, I came across a little quote that I think will help illustrate the kind of attitude many of us have about our own attitudes. It is this: “No sense in being pessimistic…it wouldn’t work anyway…” So what am I saying? I think we all know that we should have a positive attitude, but unfortunately, like the author of that quote, we don’t fully own the responsibility for our attitude.

Do you know that if you write down the word A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E and note underneath each letter the numerical place in the alphabet that each letter represents (ie. A = 1 since it is the first letter in the Alphabet; hence, 1+20+20+9+20+21+4+5), the sum total of the numbers equals 100? This is a pretty interesting little fact that serves to remind us that we are each 100% responsible for the choice of our attitude – positive or negative.

Possessing A Positive Attitude Is A Great Team Value And A Great Heart Conviction

As servant leaders in the kingdom of God, you and I must possess a positive attitude because our attitudes are infectious. This is why I prefer to have the unofficial title of CMIHL [Chief Make It Happen Leader] over my official CAO title [Chief Administrative Officer] in my organization. My CAO title defines my official responsibilities as a Chief Administrative Officer  – what I am supposed to do in the organization, but it really doesn’t define much about the way I will choose to do what I am supposed to do in the organization. You see, being a CMIHL says a lot about how I will choose to do what I am supposed to do as CAO. As a Chief Make It Happen Leader, I choose to serve others with a positive attitude to make things happen for our team, our members, and our guests. Being a CMIHL is actually all about serving others with a positive attitude.

And guess what? Every person on a team has an official job title that defines what they are supposed to do in their job; however, a team value for possessing a positive attitude with a corresponding heart conviction will actually help inspire each person on a team to be someone who will serve others with a positive attitude. The Team Value is: Positive Attitude. The Heart Conviction is: We are servant leaders who possess a positive attitude.

Possessing A Positive Attitude Ignites Great Promotion And Great Potential

This means that we must not only focus on our technical competencies in our job, but also our behavioral competencies and this is where the rubber meets the road. You see, it’s relatively easy to coach people on their technical competencies in a job, but when you start getting into the areas of their behavioral competencies like attitude, people get nervous because you are touching upon who they are on the inside. Joyce Meyer says that, “Attitude is your thought life turned inside out.” The Bible says in Proverbs 23:7 “As a person thinks in his heart, so is he.”

Let me illustrate by the wings of an airplane what it means to develop ourselves both technically and behaviorally. Years ago, when I was at a church leadership conference in California, I heard a great leader illustrate how truth and grace (representing 2 wings of a plane on the journey of Christian life) intersect at the cross. He said that if Christians only approached life in truth without grace, they would be flying on a plane with one wing of the gospel and having a perspective that everyone would be going to hell. On the other hand, if Christians only approached life in grace without truth, they would also be flying a plane with one wing of the gospel, but in the opposite direction and having a perspective that life could be one big party with no boundaries. However, in the Christian life, perfect truth meets perfect grace in Jesus at the cross which totally frees the Christian to soar in the journey of life on the two full wings of the gospel: perfect truth and perfect grace.

As I pondered this teaching, I came to realize that the same airplane illustration could be used to describe the importance of developing people, technically and behaviorally, on the journey of leadership and people development. As leaders, if we only focus on developing people’s technical competencies, then people end up flying on a plane with one wing going round and round in circles and never really achieving their full potential. For instance, if someone is an interpreter and has developed their language skills to the level of being able to fluently speak 10 different foreign languages, but they never develop a positive attitude in life, they will keep going around the same mountain of personal failure and disappointment. It may be true that such a person is technically competent to fluently speak 10 different languages; but, if they possess a mean, rude, negative attitude…having the ability to speak 10 different languages only means that they can be fluently rude in 10 different ways. Such a person will never be promoted in life no matter how many languages they learn to speak. Does this make sense?

Now the same is true on the behavioral side of leadership and people development. If a person only develops their behavioral competencies and never spends any time developing their technical competencies, then they are flying on a plane with one wing in the opposite direction going round and round in circles and never really achieving their full potential. For instance, a pilot can be the nicest person in the world, perhaps bringing everyone on the plane homemade brownies from his wife; however, if he has only flown small commuter prop airplanes and doesn’t know how to fly large commercial jet airliners, I’m not getting on a commercial jet airliner with that pilot in the cockpit. It doesn’t matter how nice someone may be, if they are not competent to do their job, they will find themselves never fully reaching their growth potential.

BUT, when people develop their technical competencies and also their behavioral competencies, they actually build a plane with two wings that will allow them to soar to ever increasing heights of leadership development and growth potential. So let me be clear. Possessing a positive attitude is a huge component in developing an exceptional behavioral competency and as coaching leaders, we cannot ignore that aspect of personal development for each person on our team.

Possessing A Positive Attitude Overcomes Great Unmet Expectations

Now let me ask this question. What do you think is the biggest reason why people go around with a mean, rude, and negative attitude? Personally, I think one of the biggest reasons that someone will do this is because of unresolved unmet expectations in their life.  Proverbs 13:12 states, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life.”  Unfortunately, when someone is let down and they do not get that matter resolved in their heart, a bitter root can grow that causes them to possess a negative attitude towards life. For example, someone at work is expecting a promotion and it doesn’t come. Or maybe someone else gets the promotion. Either way, the expectation of being promoted remains unmet and furthermore, the longer that expectation remains unmet and unresolved in that person’s life, it can eventually turn into a sour root that begins to express itself in the form of a negative attitude towards life and people.

But I have good news for you and me! We do not have to let unmet expectations stay unresolved and turn into a sour negative attitude in our lives because the word of God gives us some great guidance in this area. Proverbs 4:23 states, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” When we properly guard our hearts, we are careful to not allow an unmet expectation to turn sour in our hearts and produce a negative attitude. I believe the best way to do this is found in Luke 6:37-38 which states, “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven.”

I find it hard to have an unresolved unmet expectation in my heart when I make a conscious decision to not judge someone whom has failed to meet my expectation.  The key word here is unresolved. While an expectation may be unmet, it doesn’t have to stay unresolved in my heart through judgment towards the person that failed to meet my expectation. Now add to that the extension of forgiveness towards them when I am hurt by their failure to meet my expectations, I find that this will pretty well insulate my heart from embracing a sour negative attitude towards life and others.

Possessing A Positive Attitude Is Possible With Our Great God

Furthermore, as bone-fide Christ followers, let me encourage you with 3 great reasons why you and I have no excuse for possessing a negative attitude in life.

1)    We have the Holy Spirit living inside of us.

2)    We have the Word of God and all of its promises are Yes and Amen in Christ Jesus through us.

3)    We have the ability to pray and commune with our heavenly Father anytime, day or night.

Writing to the Corinthians, the apostle Paul states in 2 Corinthians 4:7-10, “We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.” Regardless of our circumstances in life, the apostle Paul tells us that we have a great power from God that shines in our hearts. This great power is the Holy Spirit which empowers all Christ followers with the ability to have a positive attitude despite any negative, adverse, or challenging situation in life. Furthermore, Jesus Himself tells us in John 16:33, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” With faith in Christ and the Holy Spirit living inside of us, you and I have everything we need to possess a positive attitude in life!

To the glory of God, have a blessed “Make It Happen” day!

Possessing A Positive Attitude Copyright 2013, The Make It Happen Learning Institute.  You have permission to reprint the leadership article, Possessing A Positive Attitude, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

The Make It Happen Moment ® Simplified Life

1 Comment



Quote: “If you want a simpler life, you must learn to develop a more trusting life!” – Joyce Meyer

Several years ago I was traveling on a commuter express jet with some colleagues to visit the corporate headquarters of one of our company’s corporate business partners when all of a sudden our plane encountered some very turbulent weather.  In a matter of seconds the plane dropped about a thousand feet and then began to violently shake, rattle, and toss around in every forward direction.  Our drinks flew into the air, people began crying, praying, and thinking that we were going to die in a fiery crash.  After about five minutes of magnificent maneuvering through the troubled weather, the pilot was fortunately able to regain a normal and steady flight pattern.  Relieved that we were going to be fine, one of my colleagues turned to a young boy around twelve years of age whom was traveling alone and had been in the bathroom during the mayhem and said, “Boy, I bet this is the worst plane ride you’ve ever been on, huh?”  The young boy looked at him somewhat bewildered and responded, “No man, this is the coolest plane ride I’ve ever been on…I was in the bathroom and flew up so high that my head hit the ceiling…” ☺  So I guess the moral of this true story is that life is not that much about what you experience, but rather how you simply view and respond to what you experience! 

Why is it that different people can experience the same exact bitter lemons of life, but yet some find a way to turn them into a sweet taste of lemonade while others can only taste the bitterness of lemons?  What’s the difference?  Personally, I have found the difference to be in the ability to trust that God is good and that He is in complete control of everything in our lives.  In Romans 8:28, the Bible states, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”  If we really believe this promise from God, then no matter what, we can find peace knowing that God has us in the palm of His hands and will not allow us to suffer any circumstance that He cannot turn for our good.  In fact, Matthew 10:29-31 states, “Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.  But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” 

When we learn to trust God to take care of us the same way that He takes care of the sparrows, we will begin to live a more peaceful and simplified life with an eager expectation of what God will do for us and through us each new day.  The apostle Peter writes in 1 Peter 5:7 of the New Living Translation, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.”  Imagine that the Maker of the Universe cares so much about you and I that He invites us to cast our burdens on Him.  If we actually learn to do this, there is no reason that we should not wake up each morning saying, “Good morning, Lord!” rather than barely rolling out the bed with a groan and a moan, saying, “Oh Lord, it’s morning!”  With a spirit of wisdom and faith, let us trust Jehovah Jireh, the Lord our Provider, for He cares for us and will never fail us!

The Make It Happen People Value: “Make It Happen” People Possess A Positive Attitude!

Have a blessed “Make It Happen” day!

Edited by The Make It Happen Moment ® Editorial Team

The Make It Happen Moment ® Simplified Life Copyright 2009, The Make It Happen Learning Institute.  You have permission to reprint The Make It Happen Moment ® Simplified Life, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

The Make It Happen Moment ® Never Quit

1 Comment

Finish Line

Finish Line

Quote: “Great joy comes with finishing the race God has called you to run!” – Joyce Meyer

Several years ago when my friend Scot and I began to seriously stretch our physical fitness levels, we decided to support the American Diabetes Association by participating for the first time in their annual double century ride in Mississippi – a 100 mile bike ride on Saturday, an overnight stay, and a 100 mile bike ride back on Sunday.  So we started out Saturday morning on our hybrid mountain road bikes and completed the 100 mile journey after 8 hours of steady pedaling on the first day. After dinner, we turned in early for a good night sleep and rest for our aching bodies. Sooner than I would have liked, the morning alarm awoke us so that we could get ready for the long 100 “country” mile ride back.

Well after 75 miles of pedaling on day two with a grueling gulf coast headwind blowing against us much of the time, we stopped at an ADA water station where I informed Scot that I was done. He said, “What do you mean? We’re not finished.” I said, “I know we’re not finished, but I’m done. The headwind is too strong, my butt has a rash, and I’ve decided to put my bike in that sag wagon and go back with it.” Then Scot challenged me. “No you’re not, you little ninny! We’re gonna finish this thing!” Then the nice lady at the water station says, “Yeah baby, you only have 25 more miles to go and we’ve got some Boudreaux’s Butt Paste.” And I was thinking, “Right, easy for you to say. You haven’t been pedaling a bike for two days and 175 miles…”  So I responded, “No, I really think I’m done.” Then Scot, speaking to my inner spirit firmly said, “I know you. You’re not a quitter and we’re going to finish what we started!”  So with his belief in me as a close friend, I put on the butt paste, got back on my bike, and am now glad I finished the race.

Do you know that when we are down and struggling in life, Proverbs 18:24 says that “we have a friend that sticks closer than a brother”?  His name is Jesus and He believes in each of us to be overcomers in our faith even more than the way that my close friend Scot believed in me on that day when I was having difficulty believing in myself and struggling to finish the ADA race.  The Lord tells us in His Word that we’re not quitters and firmly encourages us in Romans 8:37 by stating, “Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him [Jesus] who loved us.”  Therefore, we can conquer any situation in life because the Lord loves us, believes in us, and will strengthen us whenever we need as we place our total trust in Him and depend upon His supernatural strength. 

Furthermore, 1 John 4:4 states, “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” This means that regardless of the adversities we face in life, spiritually or naturally, we should never forget that God’s greater power is at work in us to overcome any challenge or situation we face.  With the Holy Spirit living in us as believers in Jesus, we can be assured that His supernatural strength and wisdom is always available to help us complete the race that He has called us to run with Him. With a spirit of faith and commitment, receive the Lord’s encouragement to never give up in life because when we place our trust in the Lord, the best will surely come!

The Make It Happen Celebration Value: “Make It Happen” People Celebrate Accomplishments Abundantly!

Have a blessed “Make It Happen” day!

Edited by the Make It Happen Moment ® Editorial Team

The Make It Happen Moment ® Never Quit Copyright 2009, The Make It Happen Learning Institute.  You have permission to reprint The Make It Happen Moment ® Never Quit, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

The Make It Happen Moment ® Dare To Live

Leave a comment

Image by stargardener via Flickr

Quote: “Will you dare to live like you mean it?” – Joyce Meyer

To live life like you mean it, you may have to do life like you have never done it before.  Have you ever heard it said that “we are human beings, not human doings?”  As I have pondered this statement regarding my personal life, I believe there is real truth in it, especially concerning the sufficiency of the grace of God in salvation; however, I don’t think the statement fully represents the way God thinks about human beings saved by grace through faith.  In fact, in James 1:22, the Lord commands us to “be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves.”  To fulfill this command as humans, we must therefore be “human doers” of what God says to do.  Jesus, being fully God and fully human, provided the perfect leadership example of “human doing” when He walked the earth as a man.  The things that people read about in the Holy Scriptures on Sunday, Jesus actually did as a person everyday of the week in the power and strength of God.  So while He was God, He also wholeheartedly did everything God said to do as a human.

Taking this another step further, did you know that “in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us?” (John 1:1, 14)  With the truth of God’s Word made evident in the human birth of Jesus, we can conclude that being a human doer of the Word also means being a human doer of God because the Word was God.  More simply stated, just like Jesus, we become the human hands and feet of God to do the mighty exploits of God as we surrender ourselves to the truth of His Word and do what He says to do.

Therefore, do something today that perhaps you may have never done before…trust God to be the source of your strength and embrace life with a new determination to be all that He created you to be and do all that He has purposed for you to do!  I know you may not think or feel like you can do this.  That’s ok, because the Lord already knows that we can’t do this in our own strength which is why He encourages us in Philippians 4:13 by telling us “we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.”  So don’t look to yourself for the strength alone to live this life with passion and purpose.  Simply look to God, believe what He says, and step out in faith to do all you can do in Christ to boldly live life like you mean it, trusting God to do what you cannot do along the way!  In so doing, with a spirit of faith and excellence, you will be daring to live life on purpose in the power and strength of our Lord as a passionate doer of God on earth today!

The Make It Happen Celebration Value: “Make It Happen” People Celebrate Accomplishments Abundantly!

Have a blessed “Make It Happen” day!

Edited by The Make It Happen Moment ® Editorial Team

The Make It Happen Moment ® Dare To Live Copyright 2007, The Make It Happen Learning Institute.  You have permission to reprint The Make It Happen Moment ® Dare To Live, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

%d bloggers like this: