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“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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