Brian Ray (pictured) is founder of Crossroads Career Network, a national, non-profit membership of churches that provides online job search/ career resources and access to career groups. He is also author of the 2010 Crossroads Career Workbook, owner of Primus Consulting executive search, and former vice president for human resources and administration for Chick-fil-A restaurants.
"Eighty-five percent of the reason people get jobs and get ahead in those jobs is because of attitude," reads a stunning statement by world-famous motivational speaker and author Zig Ziglar in his book Over the Top.
Yet, most people who are at a crossroads in their careers walk around with a mixed attitude, more of it negative than positive. For example:
- If you're unemployed, you may be stunned, hurt, angry, fearful, depressed, guilty, or ashamed. Or, your feelings may reflect relief, renewed energy, and a positive outlook about a new future.
- If you're misemployed in a job or with a company you don't like, you may feel miserable, anxious, frustrated, restless, or confused. On the other hand, you may feel filled with hope, excitement, or anticipation of better things.
- If you're happily employed, but looking for something better, you may feel incomplete even though everything is going smoothly. Or, you may feel happy that you have the luxury of a paycheck while you seek deeper meaning and purpose in work.
How Do You Rate?
If you could measure it on an Attitude-O-Meter, what would your attitude score on a scale of 0 (the worst) to 10 (most joyful)? Be honest with yourself and pick the number that reflects your attitude right this minute. Got it? Now, if it's less than 10, pick a higher number you can work toward, then follow these four steps starting today:
4 Ways to Pump Up Your Attitude
- Make a decision, and be happy. Once you pick a higher number on your Attitude-O-Meter, put on a happy face. Don't just fake it 'til you make it; focus only on good thoughts and behave in positive ways even in the midst of being used, abused, and refused.
- Accept loss, and forgive. If you've lost your job (or you're in a job you wish you could lose), admit, understand, and grieve the loss. Anger often accompanies loss, wrath runs through your veins, and bitterness may begin to pool in your stomach. Maybe you're blaming others: your boss, a coworker, someone else, or even yourself. The key to overcoming anger is to forgive everyone involved privately - that is, to yourself - not for their benefit, but yours.
- Accept opportunity and face fear. This is the first day of the rest of your life. If your life is a journey, are you headed in the right direction? There are thousands of occupations and industries, each with thousands of employers and workers. You may be anxious, maybe even terrified. But you can face the fear by exercising love, power, discipline, faith, and gratitude.
- Eat right, exercise, and get plenty of rest. Take care of yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually. Job search and career transition can be exhausting, so you need extra energy and endurance. When you build your personal strength, you'll become more courageous and think more clearly.
These four steps will build up a positive attitude. They'll turn stumbling blocks into building blocks, and propel you above and beyond your current state. You'll feel better, sound better, and look better. And you'll attract more job offers.
Start pumping up and let me know what results you achieve.
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