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One of the things that I want to do for 2015 is have a more positive attitude.  It's so easy to get dragged down by big things in your life, or even little things that affect the moment, where you find yourself snapping at your spouse or kids, worrying too much, or focusing on the negatives rather than the positive.  You've been there and I know that I have.

I know that 2015 won't be perfect but I really would like to start making a difference by setting aside some of the little annoyances that can add together to ruin a mood.  You've had the experience, haven't you, where you find yourself in a bad mood and you have no idea why!

It sucks.

Your Attitude Is Who You Are To Others

Have you ever noticed how people with a good attitude seem to get ahead more?  Many times we look at them and call them lucky, thinking that they don't deserve what they have, where in reality, to say something like that is very dismissive about how important attitude can be.  Let me give an example.

There's a sports blogger here in Detroit that I started following last year.  He writes about all of the major happenings, and he also spends a lot of time writing about the professional sports writers here in town.

I read him because he actually makes some really good points.  He'll analyze a situation about how a player is performing and will give much more detailed analysis and a lot more reasoning, many times eclipsing the work done by the professional reporters who work for the newspapers or major sports outlets.

You wonder why he's just writing on a blog that reaches a couple of thousand people versus a newspaper that hits hundreds of thousands, but it all comes down to attitude.

See, he will make his point, then turn around and wonder why the professional journalists didn't cover that, and he'll call them out and call them names in the process.  He'll report on something about a player who isn't performing, and put out some pretty good reasoning, then call the player vicious names for that, and will also turn around and call the journalists names for backing off.

It cycles and it's gotten to the point where he gets banned from press conferences, has restraining orders from professional sports writers whom he has antagonized, yet he still walks around with a chip on his shoulder.

Which is sad, because he could reach so many more people, but he never will, and it's all because of his attitude.  He's burned too many bridges and alienated so many people, that his attitude trumps his talent.

This happens far too often.

Five Ways To Improve Your Attitude

Having a better attitude is key, but just wanting to have one and saying you're going to mb-2015-01smilehave one is not enough to actually having one.  So, here are a few steps to improving your attitude.  If you can be aware of these things, you may not succeed at them, but you'll improve your chances by keeping them in mind and setting them as goals that you can track.

  1. Set aside jealousy – Personally, I've found that my poor attitudes toward people, especially at work, have happened when I start getting jealous over the successes of others.   As I've aged, I've realized that jealousy does not get you anywhere, and will certainly not open any new opportunities for you.  This also applies toward personal situations as well.  Back when I was single, I remember going out with buddies, and if a buddy started talking to a girl and it went well, I would often find myself jealous.  I noticed that if I let the jealousy creep in, my chances of also having success dropped to zero.  Jealousy simply does not lead to good results, no matter the situation.
  2. Find something about yourself to improve – If there is something you don't particularly care for about yourself, set a goal to improve upon it.  Make it a modest goal.  While shooting for the stars is admirable, you also have to balance that a bigger goal leads to a bigger chance of disappointment if you don't attain it.  Find something that you can do that has a high probability of success.
  3. Find something you like and build upon it – Having a good attitude means finding your strengths, recognizing them, and using them to your advantage.  Find things that you like about yourself, and build upon those things to give them greater control to your personal or professional life.
  4. Smile – Giving people smiles is a little thing that will improve your attitude, as people will smile back.  Don't walk around grinning at everybody, as you'll end up with other questions about your attitude, but saying hi with a smile to an extra person or two everyday can make a big difference in how your day goes.
  5. Be healthy – If you don't take care of your body, it will drag you down and this will lead right back to your outlook and your attitude.  If you don't get enough sleep, find time for it.  If you feel lethargic, squeeze in some exercise.  If the holiday sweets caught up with, cut back on the sugar.  All of these things will help your body feel better, and a healthy body leads to a healthy mind….and a better attitude.

Your attitude defines you in many ways.  Big changes in your attitude aren't going to happen overnight.  In many ways, you are who you are, but the little things that you can easily change will add up to improve your attitude tremendously.  A better attitude can create opportunities, make you feel better, inspire confidence in yourself and others, and unlock the hidden potential that you know is inside of you.  So, let's all go out, give an extra smile, and get started toward a great 2015!

Readers, what little things do you see that can improve attitude…or make it worse?  Have you ever seen someone so talented crash and burn because of their bad attitude? What are your tips for a better attitude?