Latitude, in this context, means: Scope for freedom of action or thought.
Attitude, by definition means: a settled way of thinking or feeling about someone or something, typically one that is reflected in a person’s behavior.
So… when you put the two together, it implies that we are free to choose our attitude towards someone or something and demonstrate that choice through our actions.
In other words, the only person responsible for your attitude towards a given circumstance or individual is YOU.
We all probably think that we are people of character. Or at least we are striving to be. In that case, why not choose to be positive? Why not choose to demonstrate through your own actions what it means to love others? Assume positive intent?
It is so easy to be negative in our thoughts and actions. Think about how many times during a typical day that you are stopping down on a negative thought about something, someone or even yourself. How often do you partake in the gossip mill at your place of work? How often are you exposing yourself to the toxicity of negativity? Who are you hanging out with? Does your inner circle strive to build each other up or is it a constant bitch session competition about whose day was worse?
I am reading a book called “The Power of Your Brain” by Stan Toler. I’m only about half way through, but in the first half of this book, I have been inspired to change my thought patterns! The book is designed to walk you through a 4 phase process for restoring order and cleanliness to your thought life. (Detoxification, Realignment, Reinforcement and Perseverance)
One thing he has shared that I love is this:
MIND BY DESIGN (An excerpt from “The Power of Your Brain”
God designed and gave us our minds – a unique gift to the pinnacle of his creation – and with them, instructions for their care and use laid out in black and white in his Word. Here is a small sampling, with my emphasis added:
- “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37)
- “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30)
- “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind” (Luke 10:27)
- “Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures” (Luke 24:45)
- “Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires” (Romans 8:5)
- “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2)
- “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things” (Philippians 4:8)
As you can see, our minds are on God’s mind quite a bit. Maybe we need to pay more attention to our minds too.
We are hardwired to use our minds and to think positively! Do you find yourself stuck in a rut of negativity? Do you feel like there is nothing to be positive about? I’ve been there and I’m betting that 100% of the people reading this have either been there or may be there right now.
How do you break free of that?
DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a licensed therapist or counselor of any sort. I am just a guy who has read some books, been through some programs and has experienced first hand how to get out of the rut of stinkin thinkin.
I picked these images because they say it better than I ever could. Gratitude is hard. Gratitude does not equal complacency – you can be grateful and still strive. Whether you think you can or you think you can’t… you’re right. (I love that one) Your attitude determines everything. It is so easy when you are “on top” to think that you got there by yourself. If you lose sight of what got you there and turn your thoughts inward to how “great” you are, you will soon find yourself alone at the “top.” The Instagram post is just some practical advice that we can all put into practice immediately!
Have you ever taken the time to write out a Gratitude List? It is a great first step in getting out of your rut.
- Be thankful to God – what are 2 areas of your life for which you are thankful to see God’s work?
- Be thankful for others – Who are you thankful for? Why?
- Be thankful for your growth – what are 2 recent growth areas of your life for which you are thankful?
Put your list somewhere that you will see it regularly as a reminder that you have things you are grateful for and that you are not alone in any of what this life has to throw at you!
Whether you are reading this directly on the site, through Facebook, LinkedIn or if you are one of my 7 followers on Twitter (I am positive this number will grow) – put a comment in the comment box, or share this post on your own social media platform and list out as many of the things you are grateful for as you are comfortable with. Tag those people you identified that you are grateful for.
Let’s use the web to weave some positivity and some gratefulness today!