Your Attitude Determines Your Altitude

Nothing can stop the person with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal. Nothing on earth can help the person with the wrong mental attitude.


Attitude SuccessYou’ve heard the old cliché that says, “Your attitude determines your altitude.” Well, it’s NOT a cliché. Research unequivocally confirms that your attitude is one of the most important … if not THE most important … factor in your success.

To give you but one example, look at the research by Dr. Martin Seligman. He spent years studying the relationship between positive attitudes and sales success. At the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, he discovered that the agents who scored in the top half for optimism sold 37% more than those in the more pessimistic bottom half. More notable still, the agents who scored in the top 10% for optimism sold 88% more than those who ranked in the most pessimistic 10%.

So the 19th century philanthropist and statesman, Charles Buxton, was right. He noted, “Sometimes success is due less to ability than to zeal.”

I couldn’t agree more. That’s why I wrote my book called, “PIVOT: How One Turn In Attitude Can Lead To Success.” I suggest you get a copy … but don’t read it. Devour it. Go to

To get you started on the building and maintaining of a positive attitude, do the following.

1. Make a rational, logical decision

Having a positive attitude is not some kind of hype from a rah-rah motivational speaker. Having a positive attitude is the only sane approach to take.

Dr. Maxwell Maltz, the author of the runaway best-selling book, “The New Psycho-Cybernetics” makes that perfectly clear. He says, “It is the job of the conscious rational mind to form logical and correct conclusions. ‘I failed once in the past, so I will probably fail in the future’ is neither logical nor rational. To conclude ‘I can’t ‘in advance, without trying, and in the absence of any evidence is not rational. We should be more like the man who was asked if he could play the piano. ‘I don’t know,’ he said. ‘What do you mean you don’t know?’ He said, ‘I have never tried.'”

He’s right. You really don’t know what you can do and what you can accomplish without first trying. So it makes a lot more sense to adopt a positive attitude toward life and work than default into a negative perspective.

Just remember … your attitude is YOUR choice. No one gave you a bad attitude, and no can give you a positive attitude except YOU yourself. YOU get to choose. You can choose to think, “I can’t stand this awful rainy weather,” or you can choose to think, “Just what we need. A nice bit of rain to freshen things up.”

Of course, if you’re somewhat cynical, you might think, “Yeah, that’s easy enough to say when you’re talking about simple things like the weather. But it’s not possible to adopt a positive attitude when things are super bad at work or at home.”

Oh yes it is. Dr. Viktor Frankl proved that as a Jewish prisoner in the concentration camps of the Nazi regime. He said it was a person’s attitude that gave them the motivation to survive in circumstances where most people could see no sign of hope. In his words, “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” In other words, attitude … and your power to choose your response … is everything.

And then, to further build and bolster your positive attitude…

2. Get in the habit of winning.

It was one of the secrets of the great football coach Vince Lombardi and it was one of the secrets of his legendary winning teams. Lombardi said no matter how “bad” you are, you need to start with small, simple goals you can achieve every day. You need to “get in the habit of winning” which creates a “winning feeling” and a “winning expectation.”

Indeed, Lombardi was so convinced that this was one of the routes to great success that he made an all-out effort to win even the pre-season games. He knew that the habit of wining would lead to a positive attitude and all kinds of other successes.

If you’re not in the “habit,” try this. Each night before you go to bed, make a “To Do” list for the following day. Plan out some things you will do that will ensure some “wins” for the day … no matter how big or small. And then the next morning, on the way to work, start thinking of what you will do, how you will do it, and how successful you will be. Start creating your self-fulfilling prophecy and reinforcing your positive attitude.

3. Remain teachable.

If you’re quite talented, you may have some difficulties when it comes to staying positive and teachable. You may act like you know it all. If so, it will be difficult for you to keep on growing.

You see … teachability is not so much about your competence as it is about your attitude. Do you have a hunger to discover and grow? If so, you’ll be the champion the great basketball coach John Wooden talked about. He said, “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”

Some people attend my “Journey To The Extraordinary” program kicking and screaming. They ’re “sent” by their employers, friends, or spouses, and they came less than “voluntarily”. But that’s no problem.

Listen to Dave Gummer from the FBI. Dave writes, “I must admit that I wasn’t all that thrilled about coming to the Journey program. I was encouraged, pushed, or forced by the powers that be. But boy am I ever happy that I attended. You came along at exactly the right time and offered some great techniques for getting through a difficult period in my life, both personally and professionally. And it’s truly working — even for my wife, because I shared with her all the techniques you taught us. A very sincere thank you.”

Even though Dave was initially skeptical, he remained teachable. What about you? Are you skeptical when you think about attending my “Journey to the Extraordinary” program? I would hope not. I would hope you’re still very teachable.

Indeed, it was his attitude and his teachability that contributed to the genius of Leonardo da Vinci. His notebooks were hundreds of years ahead of their time. He anticipated submarines, helicopters and other modern inventions. In one notebook he wrote, “Iron rusts from disuse; stagnant water loses its purity; even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind.” He was driven by his positive attitude to know more. He was learning and writing discoveries in his notebooks until the very end of his life.

And the good news is, you don’t have to have the mind or talent of a Leonardo da Vinci to be teachable. You just have to have the right attitude.

Finally, to keep on building your positive attitude…

4. Do it now.

An old Chinese proverb says, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.”

True. But that pesky first step can be a killer. All too often you may have
great intentions … you’re going to read a certain book … you’re going to write out your five-year plan … you’re going to start a new business … you’re going to lose weight … and you’re going to do a thousand other things. But for some reason, you can’t get yourself to take that first step. You’re procrastinating because you don’t FEEL like doing it.

Well, forget about your feelings. In this case, they’re irrelevant. If you know it’s something you should be doing, then do it … whether or not you feel like it. Once you take that step, the positive feelings will come.

Dr. William James, one of the founding fathers of modern-day psychology said, “Procrastination is attitude’s natural assassin. There’s nothing so fatiguing as an uncompleted task.”

If you procrastinate, you will be reinforcing your overall negative attitude toward yourself and everything else. If you just do it, you will be building a powerful positive attitude for yourself.

Now is the time to pump your positive attitude. Start with these four steps.

How teachable are you? How open to change and growth are you?