Attitude Checkup: Three Questions You Need To Answer Now

Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.
– Lou Holtz

I read a story about a girl named Naaz. One day, she looked in the mirror and found that she had only three strands of hair left on her head!

She said to herself, “I think I will braid my hair today!” So she did and went out and had a great fun-filled day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror, and found just two hair on her head!

She thought to herself, “Well, I think today I will part my hair down the middle”. So she did and had a wonderful day.

The next day, she woke up and noticed that she had only one hair left. She said, “Well, today I will put my hair in a ponytail.” So she did and had a jolly good day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror, and noticed she had no hair on her head. “Hurray!” She exclaimed and said, “I don’t have to fix my hair today.” And went with a big smile on her face.

The moral of the story? – Be happy with what you have. Each one of us is fighting some battle. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.

I like the story about Naaz. It’s a simple reminder of something that at times can be lost on us – the importance of choosing the right attitude.

As a leader, your attitude is extremely important. It needs to be. Think of your attitude as the thermostat by which all other attitudes are set. Would you consider that a good thing or bad?

In Business News Daily, Jennifer Post writes, “Psychologists generally agree that our brains are hardwired to put more of our focus and energy on bad news. Maybe it’s because we are surrounded by it, now more than ever in the age of instant news and videos of tragedies being uploaded seconds after they happen.” Sound familiar? This is why your attitude matters.

So let’s take a few moments and have an attitude check-up. Here are three questions worth asking yourself right now.

What are you thankful for?

When you are intentional about what you are thankful for, it will change your perspective and attitude. It’s all too easy to dwell on negative things and complain about what we don’t have or don’t like. When your focus is on what you are thankful for it can be a game-changer.

Even when Naaz had lost all of her hair, she had something to be thankful for. Chances are, you do too.

Question #1 is the mindset question. Your mindset and attitude are uniquely connected. Guard them both.

What are you dreaming about?

When you have a dream in your heart that inspires you it will have a positive effect on you. You cannot move in the direction of your dreams and ultimately achieve them if you harbor a negative attitude. Click To Tweet A dream bigger than yourself will require an equally positive attitude to get you there.

What dream do you have right now that requires the best attitude from you to achieve it? Never allow a negative attitude to take away your dream.

Question #2 is the passion question. How far you go with your dream is in large part determined by your attitude. Guard them both.

How are you serving others?

When your focus is on serving others and giving back you will find it hard to entertain a negative attitude. When you take the focus off of yourself and put it on others it will change your perspective. As a leader, you have to remember that it’s not about you. When you learn that, it changes everything.

In what ways can you serve others in your organization or community? Your attitude will shift for the better when you learn the secret of selfless leadership.

Question #3 is the purpose question. When you know and understand your purpose your attitude will naturally follow.

Final Thoughts

When you align your attitude with your mindset, your passion, and your purpose you will open a whole new realm in your leadership. How’s your checkup looking?


Doug Dickerson
Doug Dickerson
DOUG has been speaking to audiences in the U.S. and overseas for more than 30 years. Doug knows how to spin a story, make you laugh, and how to challenge your traditional ways of thinking about leadership. Most of all, Doug is committed to helping you grow as a leader. Doug is a graduate of Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida and studied Clinical Pastoral Education at Palmetto Baptist Medical Center in Columbia, South Carolina. While his leadership expertise has its roots in ministry and teaching. His background also includes public relations and business. Doug understands the necessity of leadership development and why creating a leadership culture in your organization is critical to your success. He is the author of four leadership books including: Leaders Without Borders, 9 Essentials for Everyday Leaders, Great Leaders Wanted, It Only Takes a Minute: Daily Inspiration for Leaders on the Move, and Leadership by the Numbers. As a speaker, Doug delivers practical and applicable leadership insights with a dose of humor and authenticity that endears him to a wide range of audiences. Doug is a John Maxwell Team member.

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