How to Wake Up Every Day and Choose Your Attitude
Here’s a crafty tip for how to 'adjust your attitude' each day and try on a wider range of outlooks on life, one day at a time.
How often have you heard someone---a lifestyle coach, a better living expert, a blogger---say that everyone has the power to choose their attitude? Or how about the maxim that we are only as happy as we choose to be? And that our thoughts shape the world around us.
These are empowering ways of thinking about yourself and how you interact with the world. But sometimes it isn't easy to pick an attitude and try to maintain it all day. And it's difficult to stick to a somewhat generic (and cliched) attitude such as 'positive attitude.' Sometimes it feels like self-help books and motivational speakers are relying too heavily on platitudes about positive attitudes. But what if having a great day wasn’t always about putting on a positive attitude but, rather, about being more mindful of your attitude throughout the day?
How do you go about choosing your attitude? And how do you know if you are choosing an attitude that will mean something and make a difference to how your day unfolds?
That’s where letting go and letting God choose your attitude for you comes in. After all, who knows better than God what's in your future? (Hint: The answer isn’t you. Only your Higher Power knows what’s in store for you!)
Read on for instructions on how to make your own "Choose Your Attitude Jar."
How to Make a "Choose Your Attitude" Jar
Start with a glass jar, a decorative vase or any pretty box or container that you can reach your hand into. If you want to decorate your jar with stained glass paint, decoupage, by all means do so!
Once you have chosen and decorated your container, take a blank piece of paper and start making a list of as many different attitudes as you can. Some of the words you that come to mind could include:
Once you have come up with your list of attitudes, cut out about 25 – 30 small rectangles of paper. You can use plain paper, colored card stock or printed scrapbooking paper if you like. Make sure each piece of paper is large enough to write one word on it and small enough to fit into the jar when folded up in quarters.
Then, with a marker, write each word on one of the pieces of paper. Feel free to dress up your handwriting by using colorful markers, swirls and curly-cues. Then fold up your word and drop it in your jar.
Each morning, draw a word from your jar and whatever is written on it, that's your attitude for the day. Before you start your day in earnest, meditate on the word for a few minutes, setting your intention for how you want to be in the world for the next 24 hours. Then put the card in a visible place where you’ll be reminded as often as possible which attitude you’ve ‘randomly’ chosen for yourself.
When you have to make a decision, think about your word. When you are faced with a challenging co-worker at work, remember what you attitude for the day is and act accordingly. For example, let's say the word you chose for the day was curious. When you co-worker comes to you with a complaint or problem, instead of getting defensive, be curious. Ask thoughtful questions. Try to see the problem from their point of view. When you are willing to listen because you want to be curious--to discover what the root of the problem is---you're co-worker will more likely feel as though she has been heard.
At the end of the day, fold the piece of paper up and put it back in the jar. If you happen to choose that word the next day, just go with it. Perhaps it's a reminder that you need to work on that particular attitude a bit more.
What's great about picking a new attitude each days is that you won't burn out trying to focus on just one attitude. It would be exhausting to try to maintain a cheerful attitude day in and day out. But by living one day at a time, one attitude at a time, you won't wear yourself out trying to maintain an eternally upbeat mood.
Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.— Saint Augustine
Though you may be randomly choosing your daily attitude from the jar, if you have faith and believe in benevolent forces, you're being guided to select the word that will best equip you to meet the day's challenges with grace and gratitude! You don't really choose your attitude. Through Divine Intervention, your attitude chooses you!
© 2017 Sadie Holloway