By Verl Workman
My father served in the U.S. Marine Corps and I learned as a small child there’s no such thing as an ex-Marine. He’d wake up all seven of his kids early in the morning by yelling “Reveille” and we’d all march like little soldiers upstairs to eat breakfast together.
He was also a high school history teacher, and one of his proudest accomplishments was helping one of his advanced placement (AP) classes win a national competition in Washington D.C. He talked about that award for years.
I remember telling him he was lucky to have all the smart kids from his AP classes to compete. He paused and looked me straight in the eye, raised his left eyebrow – facial expressions that cued I was about to get a life lesson. He said, “Son, I work with some of the smartest kids, but I choose to work with the kids with the best attitudes. It doesn’t matter how smart you are if you don’t have a good attitude.”
Sure enough, it’s something I’ve kept dear in my heart and it’s one of my favorite memories of my father.
Why am I sharing this with you? Well, in this challenging real estate market you might find yourself with an attitude that could use some polish. Let’s start with the fact that, no matter what difficulty you find yourself in, attitude is a choice. And it’s in your control. The only one who can give you a good attitude is you. So that means the most important choice you can make today is to keep a positive attitude and take action when others are whining and looking for excuses to explain their failures.
There are enormous opportunities today in every market. Sure, it may not be your favorite type of business and it may not be the most fun, but if you have the right attitude, not only can you make money, but you can actually thrive.
Here are a few simple things you can do each day to add some shine to your attitude:
1. Get up early – Getting up and walking in the morning for 20 minutes is a great way to start the day. You’ll be surprised what a quick walk in the brisk morning air will do for your mind.
2. Dress for success – Researchers have proven those who dress better feel better. That’s an easy thing to do to improve your attitude – even before you step out of your front door.
3. Surround yourself with positive people – If you’re hanging around friends or coworkers who are negative, it’s tough to see the positive. Negativity can spread like the flu so steer clear of negative Nellies.
4. Hire a coach – Sometimes you can get so down that you simply can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. That’s when you need someone else to come in and lead you through the darkness – someone who can give you direction and guidance and hold you accountable to do the right things in your business.
I’ll leave you with one more story about my dad: The first time I visited his classroom I saw a sign above his desk read simply: “Attitude is more important than aptitude.” To this day I believe that simple quote has made a great impact on my life and career and I hope it helps you too.
Let me hear from you. Have you stopped to gauge your attitude lately? If you did, what did you find? Are there areas where you could improve your attitude about your work and personal life? If you could do one thing today that would help you improve your attitude, what would that be? Please send any comments or questions to Article@CorcoranCoaching.com or http://www.facebook.com/CorcoranCoaching.
Verl Workman is president of Corcoran Consulting and Coaching Inc. (www.corcorancoaching.com/programs, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching.