I became enthralled with the concept of change at a very early place in my life when I read about Gandhi and his principles. Because my life was also touched by the war in Lebanon, I knew life could not go on the way it was and I knew that I just had to change things in order for me to feel good about my life.

I have always been blessed with a positive attitude, and I believe that a positive attitude is very helpful if you want to understand change in your life, more importantly – implement it in your life. I noticed that not everyone around me had this same positive attitude, so I’d like to explain the details of a positive attitude regarding change and then share some ideas to also help you if you don’t naturally have a positive attitude. Yes, even if you have a negative attitude, you can change.

“Two men look out through the same bars: One sees the mud, and one the stars.” ~ Fredrick Langbridge

A negative attitude or negative thinking dampens the human spirit, wraps the negative thinker up in woe, and sets up expectations of less-than-good – this is the man who saw the mud. A negative mindset goes hand in hand with illness, poverty and disappointment in life – in relationships, in career, and in finances. A negative thinker is frequently one who complains, or blames. He or she is often immature and has a victimized sense of self, wallows in self pity, and depression.

Now, let’s talk about a positive attitude. Your attitude is the habitual, mental positioning that characterizes who you are. A positive attitude and an optimistic outlook allowed one of the men in our quotation to see the stars. These traits lead to a long, satisfied life with armloads of benefits. Optimistic thinking and good health also go hand in hand, as does success.

If you don’t have a naturally positive attitude, take heart, because there are ways to change this. Life often throws us lemons, but it’s what we do with them that allows us to succeed or to fall into negativity. Here are some practical steps to consider what to do when you’re standing there, holding that lemon:

• Gaze around you and find just two good things. Give those two things full recognition and appreciation. You cannot remain negative while thinking about good things.
• Get out your journal and think about one nice thing someone did for you recently. Write them a Thank You note of appreciation, even if you don’t mail it.
• Do some form of strenuous exercise: get on your treadmill; scrub down the shower; wash and vacuum your car; mow the lawn; go rowing. You will release endorphins by exercise and endorphins always make you feel good.
• Find someone who needs your help and give it to them. By reaching out to another in generosity, you’ll soon forget that lemon. And if you see their problem, it’s frequently a bigger lemon than yours is, so you’ll gain a better perspective and lighten your sense up.

Each of those four suggestions to move away from your own negativity required change of some kind. I’m reminded of the young lad who was handed a basket full of fruit and the fruit was beginning to rot. It smelled bad and flies were buzzing. He had several options: stand there, hold the basket, grimace and cry or find someway to put the basket down. He took the basket to his father’s garden and threw the fruit into a compost pile. Sometimes that is just what is required when we are holding something rotten in our hands: find a way to put it down and distance yourself from it.

Change the actions you take when things happen. This doesn’t mean you have to get a new job or move to a new house. No, you can stay right in the circumstances you are in right now, but simply change the way you respond. If formerly negative, try positive. If positive, develop new refinements.

You have a choice in your life as to how you will habitually view things: positively or negatively. If you’ve been negative in the past, you can Be the Change and develop new positive habits. If you’ve mainly been positive, you can find new ways to Be the Change that still stimulate you and keep you moving forward. Either way, you can exercise change to get the job done.

Author's Bio: 

Maria Khalifé, expert in holistic, motivational living, teaches powerful, life-changing techniques. Universal principles sustain her revolutionary methods of coaching, speaking and teaching. Certified at the Ford Institute in San Diego, Maria leads others in accelerated growth on The Path through The Change Coaching Institute. http://www.changecoachinginstitute.com