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Posts Tagged ‘honesty’

“A man is not hurt so much by what happens, as by his opinion of what happens.”
– Michael Eyquem De Montaigne

On my way home from a meeting I came across a very playful dog and his owner. The dog’s tail was wagging and he was jumping up and down with excitement. He was excited to meet the strangers around him and was running around without a worry in the world. The owner was excited to play with him and he was smiling and laughing as the dog jumped up and down to show his affection.

 In the everyday world, there are people trapped in an environment of ‘stinking thinking’; living life based on their negative attitude. As I sat there watching this happy dog run around I could not help but think about how a person’s attitude controls their actions and their outlook on life. There are two sides of attitude: the negative and positive sides. Most people choose to live in the negative. Why is this? Why is that people choose to live in that mindset? Is it because they don’t know better? I don’t think so.

 The reason I ask these questions is because the dog I was watching had only 3 legs, yet it played like it had four. So many times I’ve come across people who place so much blame on the world or society around them that they live their lives in the ‘poor me’ mindset, or the negative side of attitude.

 As I sat there contemplating this, I began to realize that dogs do not let things affect them, no matter what happens. I have never seen a dog down on life, have you? I’m sure that dogs that are mistreated may fear people but, even then, they still will be loyal to their master and when they meet nice people they’re excited and happy. Of course dogs have different moods, sickness, laziness, and are protective just as humans are but they never let life get them down, no matter what. This dog did not look at his handicap as a negative outcome.

I believe one of the reasons they’re never affected by the negative of society is because they don’t know any better; no choice, no problem. They don’t know they have the choice. They associate life as happy and fun. They don’t realize they can be negative or mad at the world. Even if nature has played a cruel trick on them, they just go with it. Just like this dog.

So I ask you, why can’t we live like this dog? Even though it’s a doggy dog world out there, we don’t need to live in the negativity of blame and it should not control our attitude or stop us from getting the most out of life.

Our attitude is not determined by circumstances, but by how we respond to the circumstances. Our mind determines our attitude. We control our mind. We have a choice to either respond positively or negatively. Your life is not determined by what life brings you but how you bring your attitude to life. Like the dog, it is how we react to everything around us that determines our attitude. No matter how bad it may seem, there is always a better side to a negative attitude.

 

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“We should choose to follow what is right. But first of all we must define among ourselves what is good” (Job 34:4 LB).

values

Everything you do is influenced by your values. Your actions in life are largely determined by the values you hold. Every time you make a decision, you’re relying on your values to tell you what to do.

Unfortunately, some of the values you operate by are counterproductive to your success and a hindrance to your satisfaction in life. You see, many of the unconscious values you live by are ones you didn’t choose; they were imposed on you by parents, peers, and the culture around you. (Today television is the #1 values shaper in our society.) You may be operating on incorrect information and values that don’t stand up under pressure.

Just like the set of the sail determines the direction of a sailboat, your values chart the course for your life. The question is: In what direction are your values leading you? Are they going to deliver what you hope or will you eventually be disappointed?

Here’s another fact about values: they cause a lot of your stress! Stress occurs when what you say you believe and what you actually do don’t line up. For instance:

• When you say, “My family is important to me,” but you’re always too busy or too tired to enjoy them.

• When you say, “I value my health,” but you overwork, overeat, and never exercise.

• When you say, “I’m not materialistic,” but you become so in debt you must worry constantly about finances.

When two of your values conflict, that’s called a dilemma. My experience is that these incongruent values are the #1 cause of emotional tension among believers. What’s the solution?

Identify what is really important in life. “We can choose the sounds we want to listen to; we can choose the taste we want in food, and we should choose to follow what is right. But first of all we must define among ourselves what is good” (Job 34:3–4 LB).

You need to come up with a personal definition of success, not someone else’s definition but your own. Remember this: “Success is the feeling I get when I live out my values.” It’s not a destination. You can be successful at any stage of your life, based on your own personal values and goals. Begin by making a list of what you value most in life. Ask yourself “What is going to last?”

Begin eliminating those things that really aren’t important. “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. “

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