Choose Your Attitude and Be Done With Drama
Have you ever lived your own version of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day? A day that felt like from the very moment you stepped out of bed, everything you did was met with a dramatic mix of chaos, disarray, anger, sadness, and general bad vibes? This, of course, is a completely rhetorical question–each and every one of us has had not just a day like that, but many! Drama and negativity are a fundamental part of the human experience, and anybody who claims they’ve never had any is hiding something from you, or possibly from themself.
But just because drama is an inevitability sometimes doesn’t mean that it has to be a constant presence in our lives, nor does it mean that it’s something completely outside our locus of control. The way we feel and act affects the world around us, and has reverberations throughout our daily lives–when we approach every day with a defeated, indifferent, angry, or uninterested attitude, the interactions we have with our world and other people will invariably reflect that back to us to some degree.
So what if you could wake up each day with an attitude of optimism, open-mindedness, and excitement about the opportunities that may present themselves? Here’s the good news: you absolutely can. It’s not always easy, and it won’t work every single time, but it’s entirely possible to drastically improve your life by learning how to Choose Your Attitude each day, hour, and moment in a way that reflects far more positively. Here are 4 ways to help you practice choosing your attitude each and every day:
Mindfulness is key: be aware of your thoughts and feelings
The opposite of choosing your attitude isn’t having a negative headspace, it’s not being aware of your headspace. Just like you wouldn’t order off a menu without asking yourself what you’re hungry for, you can’t make a decision about your attitude unless you’re aware of what you’re feeling in any given moment.
So next time you get out of bed in the morning, take 30 seconds to take stock of your own mind and body: How are you feeling physically? Emotionally? Is there anything weighing on your mind, or any nagging irritants already affecting your attitude? If you can pinpoint how you’re feeling right now, then you’re in a much stronger position to be able to choose how you want to feel going forward.
Plan ahead: prepare for difficult situations
Choosing your attitude is a proactive approach to handling emotions–you’re picking how you want to feel ahead of time, rather than your emotions reacting to external stimuli. That having been said, the fundamental truth about emotions is that they are reactive to the situations around us, whether we like it or not, which can make choosing your attitude hard when our days are difficult.
This can be mitigated, however, by being aware of what challenges we might face and preparing ourselves appropriately. If you know there’s a looming deadline, a difficult project, or a meeting with an annoying coworker in the day ahead of you, think through how you’re likely to respond, and ask yourself if that’s how you want to respond. If so, great–push forward! If not, decide how you’d like to feel and react instead, tuck that into your back pocket, and refer back to it when the going gets tough. It may not work perfectly, but you’re far more likely to respond to a stressful situation with the desired attitude if you know what that looks like going into it.
Be open-minded: approach every instance with curiosity
Far too often, negative attitudes and responses aren’t born out of inherently negative internal feelings, but rather out of sheer brain freeze. When we’re faced with a stressor, our brains often seize up and fail to process a situation fully, leaving us to react with anxiety, anger, or unregulated emotion.
The only way to counter this brain freeze is with proactive curiosity. Approach every single situation actively asking yourself how a change in attitude or change in perspective could improve the outcomes or allow you to view the scenario differently. And don’t just think about things curiously, put it into action: Ask new coworkers to collaborate, listen to new ideas you may have otherwise dismissed. Integrate the FISH! Philosophy pillar of Play into your everyday life and you’ll be rewarded with a more positive attitude.
Manifest your outcome: visualize how you want to feel
“Manifesting” is such an overused concept nowadays, and it’s easy to dismiss it as nothing other than meaningless Instagram psychology. However, there is some truth to the idea that our imaginations, when put to active use, can create positive outcomes. It’s not as simple as “I’m imagining a million dollars” and finding your bank account now has 7 digits, but recalling positive memories or feelings or envisioning future successes can affect our emotional state in the moment.
So the next time you’re about to do something difficult, visualize what it would look like if you succeeded: Picture yourself in the big office after winning that promotion, imagine the feeling of settling into a warm bath after a stressful day, or even just literally practice smiling. These simple actions can pull us out of stress and negativity and into the attitude with which we want to approach the task or the day ahead.
Choose Your Attitude: 1 Pillar of the FISH! Philosophy:
Choose Your Attitude is one of the 4 core pillars of the FISH! Philosophy, and it’s hugely important: By turning our minds in the direction we want to go, we’re far more likely to actually get through the day happily and affect our workplace and our coworkers positively. But it’s not the only pillar, and all 4 need to be practiced in conjunction.
Choosing your attitude allows us to more effectively Be There for others and understand their emotional needs. By doing so, we’re better able to Make Their Day with acts of kindness and support. And we’ve already discussed how harnessing your curiosity and cultivating a sense of a Play can better allow us to circle back around and Choose our Attitude each and every moment.
Ideas to Reflect On:
- Do you reflect on how you’re feeling when you wake up in the moment? If not, budget 1-2 minutes during your morning routine to identify and name any emotions, stressors, or physical feelings you’re having.
- How do you emotionally prepare for stressful situations? Do you make a plan on how to get through them in a way that’s emotionally regulated and in alignment with your values?
- How does the ability to Choose Your Attitude affect how you practice the other 3 core FISH! Philosophy pillars (Be There, Make Their Day, and Play)?
Want to Implement FISH! in your organization?
Are you a leader? Do you train others? Do you want others to be leaders?
Charthouse Learning, the creator of the world-famous, award-winning, FISH! film is offering an in-person, 2-day workshop, interactive Train-the-Trainer lead by our Senior Trainer this April in Minneapolis, MN.
During our time together you’ll learn how to:
- Share the motivation and foundation of FISH!
- Introduce the FISH! film with the four practices.
- Present the invitation to apply the practices in everyday interaction with others.
- Build a sustainability and reinforcement program to transform the culture.
- Pick up tips from other FISH! Philosophers and develop a strategy to embed the practices into the DNA of your culture.
- Create an energized organization that is the “first choice” for employees, faculty, staff, leaders, and customers.
Plus, you will learn how to create a workplace where people choose to “be and bring” their best self everywhere, every day.
At the FISH! Train the Trainer you will:
- Dive Deep: Discover The FISH! Philosophy – full of “A-ha!” takeaways and perspective-shifting realizations.
- Transform: Make the four FISH! practices – Play, Be There, Make Their Day and Choose Your Attitude – an essential part of your professional and personal skill set.
- Discover: Learn practical ways to apply the FISH! practices to improve teamwork, service, leadership, retention and performance.
- Develop: Brainstorm strategies to embed The FISH! Philosophy into the DNA of your culture, strengthening your mission, vision and values.
- Collaborate: Learn and laugh with like-minded folks from across the globe.
Click Here for More FISH! Train the Trainer Information
Whether you work in business, education, or healthcare, FISH! offers accessible, intuitive solutions to empower your workers, bring your team together, and introduce Play into your organization. We invite you to contact us today at 800.695.4534 or email@example.com to speak with our cultural specialists, who will help you find the right FISH! Philosophy solutions that will nurture your organizational culture and motivate your team!
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