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A Woman Alive

February 9th, 2015

Life Happens and Then……

By Diane


My Father shared a wonderful quote with me last week (that I very much needed to hear!) and I felt compelled to share it, and my reflections, with you this morning.

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.  Attitude, to me, is more important than facts.  It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do.  It is more important than appearances, giftedness or skill.  It will make or break a company… a church…. A home.  The remarkable thing is that we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we embrace for the day. We cannot change our past.  We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable.  The only thing we can do is play the string we have, and that is our own attitude… I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how I react to it.  And so it is with you.  We are in charge of our attitude.”  Charles Swindle

I love this quote – such a vivid reminder that we are truly responsible for our choices.  I would say, “Life Happens and then we are 100% responsible for who we choose to be in every moment.”  I believe the sentiment is the same.  We absolutely cannot control what goes on around us, and there will be times of struggle, pain, unhappiness and frustration, but we can control WHO WE CHOOSE TO BE IN THE MOMENT.  This is not always easy and we will not always do it perfectly, but for me, that is the work and the opportunity of our daily lives.   When we undertake this work, this challenge of “attitude”, we will reap the huge reward of greater satisfaction, contentment, as well as deeper and more meaningful relationships.

I have been in a period of huge transition and faced some steep obstacles over the past three months and during this time have been continually exploring the tools and strategies to support myself in managing  “attitude.”  I know I have said this before – but – this does not mean that I do not feel sad, hurt, angry, stressed, afraid or confused – these feelings are part of the human experience.  What I have found is that instead of pushing the difficult times away I can acknowledge how I feel and accept the circumstance in the moment. I can choose to step back and connect to thoughts about WHO I WANT TO BE and how I want to respond, rather then choosing to blame or feel victimized.  I can turn to meditation, to prayer, to faith, to just breathing, to finding the lesson in even the most challenging of moments, to finding gratitude, to reaching out and appreciating another, to expressing myself authentically and owning my feelings, and trusting that my positive choices today will shift the moments of tomorrow.

Most importantly I can believe that I am enough, that each moment is enough and I can remember that love is the greatest “attitude” of all. Loving myself, loving others and being love as best as I am able in every moment.

What “attitude” will you choose today?  Share with me by email or send me a tweet at @DianeLaylin.

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