Quotations for Motivation #34 --- Attitude

Quotations on Attitude (Set No. 4)

As we grow old, we need to know that we will remain young if we keep the heart young, and this we can do by mingling with the young. Nothing will contribute more toward protracting the period of old age and rendering it healthy than the possession of a contented, cheerful and hopeful state of mind. Cultivate the habit of looking for the best side of things and keeping your attention fixed on it. It is astonishing how much good there is in the world if you look for it resolutely. Your own mind will keep sweet and serene and your friends will welcome you with a smile. The man who has sought the good all his days has stored up enough virtue to help him out of his hole. Such a man does not stop to bewail his failure—he does not know the world. Optimist is the foundation and crown of all success. As you grow old, cultivate a sympathy for the world at large, for its weakness, for the young, and the return in health and happiness will come to you a hundredfold.

---George F. Butler, Hays Free Press, Hays, Kan., May 20, 1920.

As we grow old, we need to know that we will remain young if we keep the heart young, and this we can do by mingling with the young. Nothing will contribute more toward protracting the period of old age and rendering it healthy than the possession of a contented, cheerful and hopeful state of mind. Cultivate the habit of looking for the best side of things and keeping your attention fixed on it. It is astonishing how much good there is in the world if you look for it resolutely. Your own mind will keep sweet and serene and your friends will welcome you with a smile. The man who has sought the good all his days has stored up enough virtue to help him out of his hole. Such a man does not stop to bewail his failure—he does not know the world. Optimist is the foundation and crown of all success. As you grow old, cultivate a sympathy for the world at large, for its weakness, for the young, and the return in health and happiness will come to you a hundredfold.

---George F. Butler, Hays Free Press, Hays, Kan., May 20, 1920.

Hours of brooding are not good for anyone. They throw one into a really wrong attitude toward life. While one is bemoaning, one is forgetting one’s blessings. Put those hours into something you might enjoy, perhaps making something for [other people] to cherish, perhaps just relaxing with friends, writing letters and calling on friends. It wouldn’t much matter what it was, so long as it meant complete abandonment of the thoughts of self and the future. Any happy occupation which takes you “out of yourself,” as the saying goes, will do the trick. It will recuse you from the hours of depression and put them to the excellent use of keeping yourself in the cheerful and helpful frame of mind. In other words, it will enable you to keep your personality.

---Betsy Root, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., May 28, 1937.

Our attitude of mind is what controls our happiness or unhappiness. We are led about by desires. It is the attitude we take toward each one, however, that regulates the way of life for us. If our attitude is one of cheerfulness then Old Man Gloom gets a tough reception whenever around.

We speak of a man as being of an optimistic nature, but the fact is that such a one has usually thought the matter all out and decided to be optimistic toward life and all its demands, defeats, or disappointments—so that his mind is forever centered upon the summer side of life.

One’s attitude of mind toward one’s work is what makes that work either significant or merely just something to get done in some manner or other. Cathedrals have been built with songs and happy thoughts buried within the bricks and stones that make them great structures.

People who harbor misery and worry and ill thinking have no idea as to the value behind the clouds in the constant Sun. They never think about the mystery of the flower than grows and waxes strong in the rain. Their attitude of mind is not that of one who has his faith imbedded in his heart.

We are what we think, be the circumstance what it may be. Our subconscious mind is a very important ruling factor in our lives and it is largely influenced by our conscious mind as we travel about, talk with our friends, and as we meditate and think alone.

Life is clarified by clear and straight thinking. Thinking without fear, and thinking that is appreciative of beauty, of the good in all people, and of the divine purpose behind our very being.

Nothing is quite so warming to one’s personality as to meet with those who impress us with their unwholesomeness. Theirs is an attitude of triumph that radiates the moment they appear before people. Get into the right attitude of mind and you are sure to be a factor in the shaping of more lives toward happiness than you dreamed. Your own life not the least in that influence.

---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Sept. 26, 1941.

Poise of mind is one of the most determining factors in one’s personal health or happiness. Ever to remain in an attitude of hope and of cheerful expectancy is to assure defeat of many a false fear, far in advance.

It is essential that each of us establish a right attitude of mind toward oneself, and toward life itself, if we would ever gain the richest rewards due us. And they are due us! It was meant that we should be born normal and that we should face every experience of life in normal fashion, which is to do it bravely, even under hazardous challenge.

We owe to ourselves, to other people with whom we daily come in contact, and to the world at large, the best of all that we are. It is cowardly to dote about what we lack. No one is interested in this side of our nature. That’s our personal problem. Nothing is more stimulating than to exist in an atmosphere of unity of mind in which this personality of ours thinks and works in unison with the world of Nature, our fellow human beings, and of God.

Everything within us is stimulated to a healthy standard, so long as our attitude is right toward our work, our friends, and life itself.

A wrong attitude can twist up everything in general. It can bring on ill health, banish friends from your path, and head you down—and out! Both mental and bodily health, as well as your success in life, depend upon your attitude. If it is a sour one, everything you think and do will sour. And self-pity will eat into what vitality you may have.

Life isn’t easy—but it is wonderful! With everything taken in its stride—joy, sorrow, disappointment, defeat, and what not—it matters not, so long as your attitude is kept on an even, undisturbed keel. You will experience the thrill of beauty, you will be inspired by the miracles of wonder about you, and people will be glad that you are in the same world with them. You will be glad, too!

---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Feb. 22, 1945.

Right thinking is essential to physical health. There are times when a change of diet is not so important as a change of thought. The body is a very delicate and plastic instrument which responds readily to the action of the processes of the mind, One’s thoughts sooner or later leave their imprint on his face. A sour countenance is not an accident; it is a result. A close observer of facial expression can name the thought-habits back of it. Beautiful thoughts invest the features with the charm and grace of sweetness.

One of the most prevalent defects in human activity is desultory thinking. Emerson once said that it was the hardest thing in the world to get men to think. If I might venture to amend his statement, I would say that harder than to get men to think is to get them to think in a straight line.

One’s thinking is the measure of his worth—it is the measure of his value among his fellows; it is the criterion of his virtue with his God. His sense of obligation resides within his mind. The responsibility of his actions is charged against his will. One has no religion outside his moods of mind; what he is, is determined by his thinking.

The importance of right habits of thinking cannot be overvalued. They have to do with health, happiness and prosperity; with character, achievement and peace. They set the bounds of desirable personality and promise heaven after death. They produce calmness, prudence and self-control. They give one poise and balance. They increase reverence and spiritual strength. God is the supreme Intelligence, and man is most like God in the capacity of a thinker. Your character is determined by the uses to which you put your mind. You are neither more nor less than what you think within yourself.

Hamlet seems to contradict himself, when, after having said to Rosencrans and Guildenstern, “There’s nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so,” he says to his friend Horatio: “There’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough-hew them how we will.”

Differing somewhat from either of these Shakespearian statements, James Allen, in his little book, “As a Man Thinketh,” undertakes to elucidate the aphorism, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he,” and contends that it is true of men and women that “they themselves are makers of themselves,” and that the “divinity that shapes our ends” is in ourselves—in fact, it is one’s very self.

Disraeli had somewhat the same thought in mind when he said, “Men are no so much the creatures of circumstances, as circumstances are the creatures of men.”

Life is under the dominion of law and justice. One does not find himself in a given set of circumstances by chance—the soul attracts to itself the things it loves and the things it fears and circumstances are the fruitage of his acts. One does not come to a bad end by the tyranny of fate, neither does one simply happen to be good.

One cannot directly choose the circumstances of his life, but he can choose his thoughts and thus indirectly, but surely, shape the character of his environment.

---William Forney Hovis, Duluth Herald, Duluth, Minn., Sept. 7, 1914.

Always to think the worst is the mark of a small soul.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Jan. 9, 1941.

It is the best part of beauty when we create it.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., March 18, 1941.

One may live above the clouds if he keeps his eyes out of the gutter.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., July 14, 1941.

Each man makes the happiness about him by the attitudes within him.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Aug. 24, 1931.

Train yourself to look for the true beauty in both man and nature and you will find that you are getting a constant foretaste of the beauty of the Creator and what He wants you to enjoy for all eternity.

---James G. Keller, Miami Daily News, Miami, Fla., April 19, 1954.

People who are always in a pickle soon get soured.

---Henry F. Cope, Lincoln County Leader, Toledo, Ore., Aug. 10, 1906.

Some people never feel good unless they are making others feel the other way.

---Henry F. Cope, St. Louis Republic, St. Louis, Mo., Nov. 26, 1905.

People who keep on expecting the worst fail utterly to grasp the significance of the presence.

---Robert Quillen, The Daily Star, Long Island City, N.Y., July 12, 1922.

Do you realize that every time you allow yourself to think you are a failure, a nobody, your mental attitude drives away, kills the very thing which you are pursuing? As long as you think you are a nobody, there is no power in the world that can make you a somebody. Nothing will save you from your condemnation of yourself, your own conviction of your inferiority, your unworthiness, and you are really "queering" your success by your self-thought poisoning.

Always think the best of yourself. Carry a wholesome, whole, ideal picture of your health, of your ability, of your success, of your happiness. Never allow a dwarfed, imperfect picture to come into your mind.

The mind always goes ahead of the plan and the plan always precedes the building, the achievement. If the plan is stunted the life structure will correspond. When you carry a poorhouse atmosphere with you, you attract poorhouse conditions.

Many of those who are ambitious to succeed hold much of the time the failure model, the mediocre mental attitude, and our achievement cannot rise higher than our mental attitude.

Form a habit of picturing yourself in the position you long to fill, in the environment which you yearn for. If you picture yourself as filling a pygmy's position you are not likely to get a giant's position.

One reason why the lives of many of us are so starved, lean, pinched and our achievement so small, is that we think too meanly of our ability and our possibilities.

The habit of forming a defective picture of yourself will very seriously cripple your self-confidence, and self-confidence is a tremendous asset, a vital force in our life shaping.

If circumstances have forced you into an unhappy environment, where your powers do not pull to their utmost, and if you have a taste for something better, if you are struggling upward to the light and are honest and sincere, you will find an opening. Aspire to something better--that is the main thing.

It is not so much a question of how far you have traveled as which way you face. It is facing life the right way with the right spirit, that will put you forward.

It is a wonderful help to carry the victorious attitude toward everything in life, the victorious attitude toward people, toward our environment, toward obstacles, toward our ambitions. Approaching all our problems, tasks, however small, with the victorious attitude, with the assurance of victory, greatly increases our confidence and our achievement force.

Above all, the victorious attitude toward ourselves, toward confidence, our health, our conviction that we are going to be well, vigorous, and able to carry out our great life aim in the spirit of masterfulness will have everything to do with getting the most out of life, and making a worthwhile career.

Saturate yourself with the ideals, with the convictions, which you long to have come true. Keep your mind filled with them and they must by the very law of attraction force out their opposites, for like attracts like. If you hold the love thought in your mind the hate thought must go. Love and hate cannot live together. A fit of the blues cannot dwell in your mind if you persist in holding the opposite thought, the cheerful, hopeful, optimistic, encouraging, expectancy of good things thought in your mind. The blue devils clear out when their antidotes enter the mind.

Visualize the model man, and you will be surprised to see how soon you will begin to measure up to your ideal.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., Sept. 27, 1916.

An eastern legend tells of a wonderful magic vase--known as the vase of life--which was ever full of a mysterious liquid. No one could tell what this liquid was. No chemist could analyze it or tell what entered into its composition. The marvelous thing about it was that whatever one dropped into it would overflow and run down the sides of the vase. That is, the original liquid would not run over, but the thing which was dropped into it would overflow in kind and in amount. The depositor would always get out of this magic vase exactly what he put into it.

Life is just such a magic vase. It will run over to you only that which you drop into it--nothing more, nothing less, nothing different. If we drop in love, generosity, tolerance, magnanimity, kindness, helpfulness, unselfishness--the life vase will run over to us the same things, in the same amount and quality. If on the other hand, we put in hate, jealousy, envy, cruelty, selfishness, grasping greed, malicious gossip about our neighbors--it will run over with all these black devils to torment us and rob us of happiness and success.

Every minute of every day we are dropping something into our magic vase, and our present and future welfare depends upon what this is. You alone control its overflow. You can drop into it everything you please, and as surely as the earth yields to the farmer a harvest like the seed he sowed, your life vase will yield to you an overflow like the thing you put into it.

If, after years of toil and hard, persistent effort, you find your hands empty, your life meager, unfruitful, it is because of your empty, negative thought, your poverty thought, your limited, restricted ideas, the fear thoughts, the discouraged thoughts that you have put into your life vase. These have negatived your mind, lessened your ability and killed your creative power.

It doesn't matter how hard we work, if we put poverty stricken thoughts into our mental magic vase, the fear of poverty, the dread of coming to want, these will appear in our lives. The habitual thoughts, the motives, the mental attitude, the spirit in which we face life, will be shown in the overflow of the vase.

Are you dissatisfied with your life, disappointed with your measure of happiness and success? Then your thought must be at fault. You cannot expect an overflow of happiness and success when you have dropped into your vase only failure, distressing thoughts, poverty thoughts, unhappy, miserable, pessimistic thoughts off all sorts.

One thing is certain. If you are miserable and disappointed, if you feel soured toward the world, you are getting the overflow from your past.

If you want to get the best out of life this year, you must put the best you have into it. If you have been dropping all sorts of hideous things into your life vase during the last year, stop it. drop in this year only the things you want, the things your heart longs for, the things which will make your life bright, beautiful, successful, happy.

And you will be surprised to find how your whole life gradually will become flooded with sunshine and beauty, prosperity and success.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., Feb. 21, 1919.

Many people are disappointed because they have so little love in their lives. I have heard one woman say that she does not believe there is any such thing as real unselfish love. She has found that what she thought was love in some of her so-called friends was only self-interest, for when she was unfortunate and was not able to pay what she owed them they turned against her.

Without knowing it, her own mental attitude, her cold distrust of others, is driving love and sympathy away from her. In a general way, we get back as much love as we give. The feelings we arouse in others, the sentiments, the emotions, the passions we excite, are good indicators of our own disposition, our own character. If we arouse suspicion, distrust, jealousy, envy--these qualities must exist to some extent in ourselves. Like attracts like. We call out of others what corresponds to our mental attitude toward them, our treatment of them.

Many people who are famishing for love, whose greatest disappointment is that their love instinct is not satisfied, make it impossible for love to burn in their hearts, because they is so little there that goes with love. A heart full of bitterness, envy and jealousy, of greed, cold selfishness, an overleaping ambition for place, fame, power, is no dwelling place for love. It would be chilled to death.

Most of us by our wrong mental attitude drive away the things we long for and struggle to attain. Every normal being longs for love, and yet how many are constantly driving it from them by their mental attitude and their unlovely ways.

A mother who all her life has been hungry for love is alienating her children by the exactions of an unfortunate temperament. She makes the home so uncomfortable by her hard, critical fault finding spirit and her disagreeable disposition that her children are never happy there. They are always glad to get away from it and from their mother. Nothing they do pleases her. She is continually finding fault with their conduct, their dress, their manners, their habits. They never get a word of praise or commendation from her, no matter how hard they strive for it. The result is that she is driving what love they have for her out of their hearts.

True love is never exacting or fault finding. It cannot be unkind or querulous. If you want to be loved you must stop barking at the bad in others and look for the good. You will always find what you look for.

Love is the golden key with which all hearts are opened. It is the magic door through which we must pass to the hearts of our fellow men as well as to the success in work and life.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., May 28, 1919.

I know a man who, if he happens to forget something in the morning and is obliged to run back for it and perhaps is late at his office, will fret and stew, curse and swear, not realizing that he is poisoning his mind, getting himself out of time and totally unfitting himself for the day's work.

If your mental attitude is right, if you face life in the right way, if the right spirit is in you, if you put yourself in tune, everything you do--taking your morning bath, dressing, eating your breakfast, [going] to your office for business--all this will give you a sense of real pleasure. But if you fret and stew and think that these many things in your daily routine are a bore, a waste of time, you are losing a lot of precious energy.

If there is anything that an efficient man must do it is to put himself in tune for the day's work and not allow anything to disturb his mental balance or throw his mind out of poise.

There is nothing irksome in doing necessary things in the day's routine if we do them in the right, kindly spirit. The spirit is everything. What's the use of keeping yourself, your home, your place of business all stirred up over the trivial, the things that do not amount to anything?

The art of all arts is to keep the mind poised, balanced, serene. Then you are in condition to do the best thing possible to you and to enjoy life to the full. It takes but little to destroy the harmony of the home or the place of business. It takes little to destroy your own peace of mind. Why should a great big man, made in the image of his Creator, inheriting all the good things of the world, allow himself to be so upset by a little, contemptible, trifling, picayunish thing? Is it sensible? Is it worthwhile? A thousand times no!

Just try this experiment of starting out in the morning with an invincible determination to keep your poise, your mind serene, yourself in harmony all day, no matter what happens to make you otherwise, make up your mind that you cannot afford to lose your mental balance in any circumstances. You will get such immense satisfaction from your increased efficiency, the greater amount of work you can do with so much greater comfort and greater peace of mind, that you will not feel that you can afford to pay such a terrible price, the price of your peace of mind and your happiness, for the sake of indulging your explosive passions. There is no business or efficiency in it.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., June 7, 1919.

As long as you live in the depths of the blues, mentally, my friend, you certainly will be blue. As long as you keep picturing your troubles, dwelling upon and worrying about them, they will keep you down, for those are the destructive moods which kill the zest of life. When you are in the depths of the blues you are sending forth mental poisonous gases which blight everything around you; your negative mood is destroying everything that is productive, creative.

Dismiss these blues by thinking of their opposites. Neutralize them by holding the constructive mental attitude. Think courage, confidence, assurance regarding the future. Expect good things to come to you. Keep your mind buttressed by a vigorous faith. Hold the ideals of cheerfulness, gratitude, good will toward everybody, and you will be surprised how quickly the enemies which are dogging your steps and making your life miserable will disappear, just as does the darkness when the shutters are opened and the light rushes in. We do not drive out the darkness, but introduce its antidote, light, which instantly neutralizes it.

The next time you feel jaded, discouraged, completely played out and "blue" you will probably find, if you look for the reason, that your condition is largely due to exhausted vitality, either from overwork, overeating or violating in some way the laws of health. ...

An hour's walk abroad the open heaven after an exhausting, perplexing, soul-barrowing day's work, will often completely change one's whole mental attitude.

To change your mental attitude, seek the method which is best to you, and you will be surprised to find the poison of fatigue fully neutralized, the whole atmosphere of your thought changed.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., March 31, 1920.

A man of my acquaintance, whose hair is not graying, has been going, ever since I first met him (a quarter of a century ago) to start something in which he thoroughly believes. Each year he has assured me that he was convinced that that particular year was the year for him to start. He was really going to begin his great life work then.

But always doubt halted him on the threshold and made him put off the beginning to some "more favorable time." So the years passed until the putting off habit was established, and this now has such a grip on him that he shrinks from undertaking anything new.

The enthusiasm of youth is gone and the idea of getting out of his old, mediocre, subordinate rut to try something different fills him with fear--fear that things may not work out right, that it would be risking a certainty for an uncertainty, that, at his time of life, it would be madness to run any risk!

Are you among the hundreds of thousands of people in this country today who, like this man, have splendid ambitions, who have made resolutions to carry out those ambitions--and have the ability to do so--but who are cowering victims of doubt, which keeps them from making a start? Are you waiting for a "more favorable time," unable to make a beginning while doubt stands at the door of your resolutions? Are you afraid to burn your bridges behind you, to commit yourself to your purpose, because doubt tells you that you may fall?

If this is your mental attitude, you are smothering the divine urge within you to go up higher, which the Creator has implanted in everything in the universe. You are opposing His plan for you; you are preparing for defeat instead of victory, to go down instead of up.

If you don't change your attitude and drive your arch enemy, Doubt, out of your life, you will wake up one day to find yourself an insignificant "cog" in a great wheel, plodding along in mediocrity among thousands of employees who, like yourself, might have been in business for themselves but for this great enemy inside of them.

No one will ever know how many round pegs have been doomed by doubt to spend their lives in square holes. ...

The man who would do anything worthwhile in life must have courage to match his vision.

He must dare to begin or his vision will fade, his power will wane, and he will never do the thing he was sent into the world to do.

—Orison Swett Marden, The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., Aug. 18, 1920.

NOTE: More quotations on Attitude can be found in these Hubs: Quotations for Motivation #2 and Quotations for Motivation #32 and Quotations for Motivation #33

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