Changing your attitude to find success Print
Youth Column
Written by Erick Rommel, Catholic News Service   
Thursday, Sep. 11, 2014 -- 12:00 AM

We all know that negative person: the one who builds himself up by tearing down those around him. The one who thinks the way to appear more competent and professional is to point out the mistakes and flaws of others.

People like that will always exist and most will never change. Their actions in high school, they'll repeat in college and in professional life. Even though they think they're perfect, we know differently. That leaves us with two options.

The first is to point out their every flaw in return. But that's a never-ending spiral that makes us look defensive. It also sucks the joy out of work.

The second option can be life-altering. Turn that person's negatives into a positive. Imagine yourself in a situation where someone points out your mistakes. Instead of defending your actions, take a different approach. How would those around you respond if you said, "Yep, I made a mistake"?

When you acknowledge your weaknesses, it's harder for others to point them out. You become a person responsible for your actions.

What if you applied that approach to your entire life? Stand up for yourself. Turn your "I should" into an "I could."

Little words make a big impact.

Have you lost a job? Not received a promotion you thought you deserved? Don't get frustrated. Make them opportunities, not obstacles.

I know someone who is great at what she does. Knowing her capabilities, her boss doubled her workload. Instead of struggling with these new, unrealistic goals, her frustration became motivation. She searched for and found another job. She's now in a better situation and the employer who took advantage must now face the consequences that come from losing a top employee.

What if she hadn't found that new job? Would she have struggled and asked, "What will I do with all this extra work?" Would she have complained and said, "I can't succeed?" No! She would have said, "I can handle this." She would have adapted and learned and found a way to be successful.

It's all about attitude.

What about your personal life? Do you complain about money? Your social life isn't perfect? Turn struggles into adventures. Can't afford a trip to the city? Go to the beach. Don't have a date for that movie you want to see? Go with a friend or go alone.

When you frame negatives as positive, you're guaranteed to have more fun.

Stop hoping for change. Believe in it. It's easy to say, "I hope I get what I want." It's more difficult to create an attitude where you believe that "I know I'll get what I want."

Sometimes you won't, but it won't be because you doubted.

The negative person doesn't know the real you. They see a target. They don't know your strength because they don't see it in themselves.

Be a better person by building yourself up, not by tearing others down. Don't look at challenges as roadblocks; see them as opportunities. Take responsibility for everything. The best way to achieve your full potential is to believe you can.

Now, get out of your way and find success.

Erick Rommel is head staff writer for The Catholic Spirit in the Diocese of Metuchen, N.J. His column is syndicated through Catholic News Service. Rommel may be reached at: Erick Rommel, c/o Catholic News Service, 3211 Fourth St. N.E., Washington, D.C. 20017.


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