The power of choice and right attitude are up to you. Take a minute and read it again. How does it feel?
Victor Frankl says in his book, Man’s search for meaning, “everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances”.
Choosing the right attitude is always important. But when leading others, having the right attitude is a must. According to this article from HBR, there is one thing that makes the difference in leadership: the positive relational energy.
We all know people who make us feel full of power, igniting our will to challenge ourselves, to accomplish more. And, there are people who simply drain our energy, and vampire our will. Who will you be? An energy drainer or a will lifter.
Attitude should be a conscious choice
Unless chosen consciously, emotions usually take over our attitude. Imagine you wake up early to go to work, and it’s a Monday’s dark and rainy morning. You probably feel down, tired and demotivated, and then your attitude will show that.
On the contrary, imagine you wake up and there is a shiny, bright day with the spring sun coming from your window. This could lift you up, and your attitude would mirror that.
Besides emotions, attitude has to do with our internal motivation. Motivation is the trigger to display the attitude we need, despite emotions. Understanding how our attitude can impact others is the first step to find that motivation.
Positive energy impact engagement. People feel more capable, there’s more room for exploring possibilities. The ambient could be lighter, even facing difficult circumstances. There’s a place for hope and growth.
Moreover, having a positive attitude towards someone amplifies the Pygmalion effect impact. This is a very well-known psychological effect in which expectations lead to improved performance. In other words, if you believe in me, I will perform better.
We are creatures of habit
Having the right attitude is not a one-day effort. But eventually, our nature can be a lever. Human beings, we are creatures of habit. The more we get used to something, the easier it becomes.
We have a choice every day to choose a positive attitude, despite our current circumstances. The more we choose positive, the faster we find our way to do it.
Choosing positivity is a matter of creating the right context: take care of your mental health, and dismiss, when possible, people and things that make you feel down. Look for the upsides in any given situation. Train your mind to look for opportunities and change perspectives.
And while you train yourself, fake it. Smile, even if you don’t find any particular reason. Our brain can be easily hacked, and smiling will improve your mood. As the saying goes, life is 10% of what happens and 90% how we react to it.
As Monty Python sung, it is worth looking on the bright side of life!