No. 1085



Have you ever noticed that the higher you go on the human scale, the nicer the people are? It’s all a matter of attitude. You can tell a great deal about a person just from studying his attitude. People are mean, suspicious and vindictive outwardly only when they are mean, suspicious and vindictive inwardly. The more confident a person is of his own value as a person, the better his attitude toward others and the world in general.
Big people just naturally treat you well -- they’re smiling, courteous, and confident. Being happy with themselves as people, they can reflect this attitude and have nothing to fear. Only little people will treat you badly. These are the people who have really never grown up or matured. Something stunted their inner growth and their confidence in themselves. Because they are not happy within themselves, and not confident in their own ability and worth as an individual, they can only see the world in their own reflection. As a result, their treatment of you is a kind of punishment of themselves.
We can only love others to the extent that we love ourselves. By carefully observing how others treat you -- particularly strangers such as store clerks, salesmen, elevator operators, gas station attendants, employees of all kinds -- you can make a fairly good evaluation of what these people think of themselves.
People with the best attitude just naturally gravitate toward the top of any business. So, the higher you go up in any business of value, the nicer the people seem to become. Their good attitude did not come as a result of their better jobs – their better jobs came to them as a result of their attitudes.
When meeting a successful and happy person, some of us make the mistake of thinking, “I’d be happy too, if I had what he’s got.” It’s a natural tendency to think his attitude is the result of his success. But this is not the case, in fact, just the reverse is true.
William James of Harvard once wrote: “The greatest discovery of my generation is that people can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.”
Each of us attracts the kind of life we, as individuals, represent. That is, before a person can achieve something, he must become the kind of person to which this “something” would naturally belong. We must first be the person we would like to be before the things that person would have can come to us. Might sound complicated, but it isn’t really.
Think about how you would act if you had everything you wanted, and then begin to act that way. Make that kind of attitude a habit, and you’ll get the things you want. But remember, the attitude must precede the accomplishment. Most people have this backwards and, as a result, wonder why they never quite make the grade.
If you want to be happy, spend your days acting like a happy person and it will come to you. One day you will wake up to find you’re happy and you will never quite know when the acting stopped and the reality began. That’s why the saying “people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be” is true.
Back in 1970, my former Dale Carnegie teacher, the late Bob Gannaway, and I started a company called Motivation Services Inc. and our slogan was ATTITUDE MAKES THE DIFFERENCE. Just recently I found the above article in my files. Not sure who wrote it, but I wanted to share it with you.
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