• Susan Pattis

Attitude Determines The Outcome

In the 19th century, a greedy and corrupt Governor of Kansas offered a large reward; the state would pay fifty dollars for every native Indian killed. Two gunfight veterans, Billy and Tom took the opportunity for some quick cash by trying to kill some Indians with their rifles. After thirty days roaming the wild, they hadn’t found a single Indian. A terrible sand storm blew up on their way home which took their water supplies, and they lost their horses in the dust. Amazingly, Billy and Tom survived the storm. After a few hours with only their guns in their hands, the two men found themselves surrounded by tens of thousands of Indians holding rifles and looking enraged from behind every rock, wading across every stream, and standing in every field on horseback. "We will be wealthy now, partner," Tom said to Billy with excitement. "No, we can’t kill them now; you see, the Indians did not hurt us when they had the chance," Billy told Tom. Billy stepped away and gave up his rifle, but Tom fired three times and killed two Indians. The Indians fired back and killed Tom, but they allowed Billy to leave. Billy lost one of his eyes after falling onto a large sharp rock as he ran away. "Thanks to God I still have one healthy eye to see the beautiful world, but Tom has gone forever," Billy told his family at the hospital.


Billy and Tom took a different approach during the events with different results. Many unexpected incidents happen in our daily lives, and the outcome depends on how we see the situation at the time. If you treat life as candy regardless of what happens, you will live a joyful life. If you treat your life as a bitter fruit, your entire life will be toxic with sadness and resentment. It is common to have a life of ups and downs. You will never know how to enjoy the ups if you do not know about the downs.


One of my students told me her story about positivity. After a diagnostic test on her grandmother, she was told she had six months to live because of Cancer; her parents completely broke down with the terrible news. The whole family decided to keep it secret from the grandmother in order to fill her last months with happiness and love. Her grandmother noticed something was wrong in the family because everyone suddenly treated her with extra care and attention, even those relatives who had ignored her for many years. Her grandmother asked her mother one day, "Tell me the truth, is there something wrong with my health? Don't hide from me anymore." After knowing the situation of the disease, her grandmother reacted with a calm and positive attitude. "It’s ok, and I have no fear about death. We all have to go someday; this is the destiny of all humans. I accept my death path with gratitude because I have had more love and care from you all for the past few days than in the past ten years." So, her grandmother was in pain, but she was strong, and she lived for thirteen months instead of the predicted six. Please don't fear death; it is the only ultimate truth of life for all. Yes, you can fight death most of the time if your positive attitude and willpower is strong enough.

Are you currently holding a positive attitude in a difficult situation? Are you keeping hope alive when you just failed a job interview at the age of sixty? Do you have the courage to start a new business after being laughed at as a failed entrepreneur? Will you fall in love again after knowing your partner cheated on you? Holding a positive attitude might not win you the lottery, but your attitude will ensure that your spirit stays at an all-time high and will ensure you make your best efforts even in the darkest of times. You are the creator of yourself, and whatever happens in your life results from your creation. Please accept who you are and live life on your own terms, not on the expectations of others. Never apologize for being yourself and for taking the less traveled road instead of a bitter path of tears and pain. Laugh in the face of difficulties, leap without judgment, match the melody of your music, and dance with real life.


Attitude creates miracles. Here is another old but interesting example of positive thinking. A classy lady woke up one morning and noticed in the mirror that she had only three hairs on her head. "I will braid my hair today," she said to herself. So, she had a great day. The next day she looked in the mirror after waking up and saw that she had only two hairs on her head. "I can divide my hair down the middle," she said to herself. So, she did and had a wonderful day. The following day after waking up, she noticed in the mirror that she had only one hair on her head. "Well, today, I am going to wear my hair in a ponytail," she said to herself. She did exactly that and had a joyful day. The next day she woke up and looked in the mirror and realized that she had no hair on her head. "Finally, I don't have to fix my hair anymore," she said to herself and had a good life.


Attitude is the most valuable trait to live a happy and fruitful life. Most people spend too much time during the day thinking about bad things that they forget to notice the good and happy things in their lives. Many people wait for the perfect moment to enjoy life, but those moments might never come. So, take the chance when you still have the time and the energy, do not wait until it is too late. Stay positive and spread a happy attitude to all.