As much as our lives may be impacted by our circumstance, I'm a firm believer that they are far more influenced by our attitude. While we may collectively look down upon certain things, you can almost always find an opposing, positive stance to pretty well everything.
Take a rainstorm, for example. Most would find it annoying, gloomy, and/or unfortunate, but others (such as a farmer) would consider it something to be happy, relieved, and/or excited about.
With so much of our experience being within our control, why do so many of us continually choose to take such pessimistic and negative views towards things? Here is a list of 8 mind shifts that I personally feel could be the keys to finding the always sought-after success and happiness:
(NOTE: Of course there are certain experiences that will be far more difficult to apply these mind shifts to, but this list is more of a friendly reminder to be applied wherever possible.)
1. Comparison vs Support
There are over 7 billion of us on this planet. That's an awful lot of people to potentially compare yourself to, and thanks to social media, doing so has never been easier. Rather than continually measuring yourself up against others (and secretly hoping that they fail), why not make the mental shift to wish success upon them instead? They are human just like you, with their own set of challenges and hardships, and likely would love to succeed at particular things as much as you would. What's more, they probably find something equally enviable in you, so why not share your knowledge between you and help each other reach your goals?
2. Past vs Present
As traumatic or wonderful as our past may be, it likely has little to no impact on the present moment. So rather than continually dwelling on what was, live in what is, and work to make it better and/or even more memorable.
3. Know-It-All vs Perpetual Student
In my opinion there is no greater roadblock to success than being stubborn in a particular view. It's great to feel passionately about your beliefs, but it's another to hold to them so strongly that you refuse to even listen to the other side. The world is filled with lessons and knowledge to learn, and what better way to benefit from this than to accept that you will forever be a student to life? You can always learn, grow, and evolve, provided you stay open to the possibility.
4. Blame vs Take Responsibility
Whether it be another person, unforeseen variable, or circumstance, there is almost always something we can at least partially attribute or blame for everything that happens. But I believe that a key to my own happiness has been a willingness to take responsibility for things rather than continually look for ways to get myself off the hook. Just as we are so readily willing to take responsibility for anything awesome, why not take the same responsibility for our shortfalls? How good the honesty feels might surprise you.
5. Talk vs Do
It's easy to sound important, but it's far more difficult to actually be important. One key factor of success is embodying the courage that actually acts upon ideas rather than simply speaking about them.
6. Wait vs Attack
The world will most certainly always throw you curveballs, but that isn't reason enough to simply sit back and let life happen to you. If you want something, hungrily go after it! Even if it doesn't pan out, at least you found out firsthand, and if it does, you're probably that much closer to the success and happiness you seek.
7. Resent vs Forgive
We've all had terrible things happen to us, and begrudging whoever it involves, even years later, may seem natural. But what's the point? Do you really care so much that you will happily allow it to ruminate in the back of your mind, day after day, weighing you down? Why not accept it for what it was, mentally forgive whoever it involves, and focus on what you have in front of you right now?
8. Follow vs Lead
We may not all desire to lead others, but at the very least we should desire to take leadership over our own lives. Choose to always be in the driver seat of your life; go after what you would like to accomplish yourself rather than waiting for someone to do all of the hard work and then leading you by the hand.