Quotes on Attitude

We went west willingly, because we had to. — Brigham Young

Stop seeking out the storms and enjoy more fully the sunshine. — Gordon B. Hinckley

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms–to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to chose one’s own way. — Viktor Frankl

Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character  – Albert Einstein

Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. – Winston Churchill

People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude. – John C. Maxwell

Our attitude towards others determines their attitude towards us.  – Earl Nightingale

As you create a home, don’t get distracted with a lot of things that have no meaning for you or your family. Don’t dwell on your failures, but think of your successes. Have joy in your home. Have joy in your children. Have joy in your husband. Be grateful for the journey. – Marjorie Pay Hinckley

Those who survived best in prison and hostage camps were those who were concerned for their fellow prisoners and were willing to give away their own food and substance to help sustain the others.  Dr. Viktor Frankl stated:  “We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread.  They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of . . . human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, [and] to choose one’s own way [of life].”  (Man’s Search for Meaning, New York: Simon and Schuster, 1963, p. 104) — James E. Faust, Ensign, May 1992, p. 8

Your family will never connect your unloving behavior to your lack of energy.  Slow down and save enough energy to deal with your family.  Don’t be so busy doing “things” that you don’t have time for “people.” — Saundra Phelps, BYU Education Week, 1985

“Pain is inevitable, but misery is optional.”  Nothing can force us to be unhappy.  (Jack Rushton) — Allison M. Hawes, “It’s Good to be Alive,” Ensign, April 1994, p. 43

Just for today I will try to live through this day only and not tackle my whole life problem at once.  I can do something for 12 hours that would appall me if I felt that I had to keep it up for a lifetime.

Just for today I will be happy.  This assumes to be true what Abraham Lincoln said:  “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

Just for today I will adjust myself to what is and not try to adjust everything to my own desires.  I will take my “luck” as it comes and fit myself to it.

Just for today I will try to strengthen my mind.  I will study.  I will learn something useful.  I will not be a mental loafer.  I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration.

Just for today I will exercise my soul in three ways:   I will do somebody a good turn and not get found out; if anybody knows it, it will not count.  I will do at least two things I don’t want to do — just for exercise.  I will not show anyone that my feelings are hurt; they may be hurt, but today I will not show it.

Just for today I will be agreeable.  I will look as well as I can, dress becomingly, talk low, act courteously, criticize not one bit, not find fault with anything, and not try to improve or regulate anybody except myself.

Just for today I will have a program.  I may not follow it exactly, but I will have it.  I will save myself from two pests:   hurry and indecision.

Just for today I will have a quiet half hour all by myself and relax.  During this half hour sometime, I will try to get a better perspective of my life.

Just for today I will be unafraid.  Especially I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe that as I give to the world, so the world will give to me. — Anonymous

Keep an open mind – if only to let the bad ideas out. — Chauncey Riddle

At times all of us are called upon to stretch ourselves and do more than we think we can.  I’m reminded of President Theodore Roosevelt’s quip, “I am only an average man but, by George, I work harder at it than the average man.” — James E. Faust, “I Believe I Can, I Knew I Could,” Ensign, November 2002, p. 50

Your attitude determines your altitude. — Anonymous

I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances. — Martha Washington, 1732-1802

Ahmed, who managed the souvenir shop across the street from the Army camp, became a close friend.  So did the man Sgt. Joseph Infante knew as Abu Hamza.

Trained for military intelligence – and “a linguist or military intelligence soldier at heart” – Infante, 39, ended up going to Iraq as a cook with the Army National Guard’s 1457th Engineer unit from American Fork [Utah].

“I saw it as an opportunity to exercise the best attitude I could in doing something that I really didn’t want to do,” he said.

So for several months, Infante served up two meals a day to 450 soldiers at a camp not far from the Baghdad Airport. . . .

“It’s a stressful job, and probably the most thankless job in the military,” Infante said.

But Infante turned his less-than-ideal circumstances into a life-changing experience by developing relationships with the Iraqi people he met during 15 months in the country between February 2003 and May 2004.

He started cultivating these relationships before he went to the Middle East, listening to tapes and teaching himself rudimentary Arabic while training at Fort Lewis in Washington. . . .

“Not very many soldiers took an active interest in learning the language, so they were always very happy when any of us knew even a few words,” he said. — “Utah soldier made most of his time in Iraq,” Deseret Morning News, December 31, 2005, p. A1

Those who grieve frequently find themselves alone.  Missed is the laughter of children, the commotion of teenagers, and the tender, loving concern of a departed companion.  The clock ticks more loudly, time passes more slowly, and four walls can indeed a prison make.  I extol those who, with loving care and compassionate concern, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and house the homeless.  He who notes the sparrow’s fall will not be unmindful of such service. — President Gordon B. Hinckley

P ositive

A ttitude

C hanges

E verything

The Lord has probably spoken enough comforting words to supply the whole universe, and yet all we see around us are unhappy Latter-day Saints, worried Latter-day Saints, and gloomy Latter-day Saints into whose troubled hearts not one of these innumerable consoling words seems to be allowed to enter . . . on the night of Gethsemane, the night of the greatest suffering ever to take place on this world, the Savior said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you . . . let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).  I submit to you, that may be one of the Savior’s commandments that is, even in the hearts of otherwise faithful Latter-Day Saints, almost universally disobeyed. — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, CES Young Adult Fireside, BYU, March 2, 1997

“Now, what do we hear in the gospel which we have received?  A voice of gladness! A voice of mercy from heaven; and a voice of truth out of the earth . . . a voice of gladness for the living and the dead; glad tidings of great joy. . . . Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause?  Go forward and not backward.  Courage, brethren; and on, on to the victory!  Let your hearts rejoice, and be exceedingly glad.  Let the earth break forth into singing. . . . Let the mountains shout for joy, and all ye valleys cry aloud; and all ye seas and dry lands tell the wonders of your Eternal King!  And ye rivers, and brooks, and rills, flow down with gladness.  Let the woods and all the trees of the field praise the Lord; and ye solid rocks weep for joy!  And let the sun, moon, and the morning stars sing together, and let all the sons of God shout for joy!” — D&C 128:19, 22-23

“Attitude can make all the difference in our lives, and we control our attitude,” President Monson said. “It can make us miserable or happy, content or dissatisfied. To a great degree, it can make us strong or weak.”

It was the philosopher William James who developed the “as if” principle:   If you want a virtue, act as if you already have it.  If you want to be brave, act as if your are brave.  If you want to be happy, act happy.

“Change your attitude by trying the ‘as if” principle — it can work for all of us.” — “President Monson delivers Dixie Commencement Address,” Church News, May 14, 2011, p. 3

A in my ABCs refers to attitude. William James, a pioneering American psychologist and philosopher, wrote, “The greatest revolution of our generation is the discovery that human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.”  (William James, in Lloyd Albert Johnson, A Toolbox for Humanity: More Than 9000 Years of Thought,” 127.)

So much in life depends on our attitude. The way we choose to see things and respond to others makes all the difference.  To do the best we can and then to choose to be happy about our circumstances, whatever they may be, can bring peace and contentment.

Charles Swindoll – author, educator, and Christian pastor – said: “Attitude, to me, is more important than … the past, … than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do.  It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill.  It will make or break a company, a church, a home.  The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day.”  (Charles Swindoll, in Daniel H. Johnston, Lessons for Living, 2001, 29.)

We can’t direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails. For maximum happiness, peace, and contentment, may we choose a positive attitude. — President Thomas S. Monson, “Living the Abundant Life,” Ensign, January 2012, p. 4

I come to you tonight with a plea that we stop seeking out the storms and enjoy more fully the sunlight.  I am suggesting that as we go through life that we try to “accentuate the positive.”  I suggest that we turn from the negativism that so permeates our modern society and look for the remarkable good among those with whom you associate, that we speak of one another’s virtues more than we speak of one another’s faults, that optimism replace pessimism, that our faith exceed our fears.

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[Looking ahead at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in February, President Hinckley cautioned that a great deal will be written about the Church in the next months.]  Much of it is likely to be negative.  Journalists may mock that which to us is sacred.  They may belittle that which we call divine.  They may accuse us of being opposed to intellectualism.  They will in large measure overlook the glory and the wonder of this work.  But I want to tell you that what they write will not injure us.  We may be offended by it, but the work will go forward. . . . They will have great difficulty understanding us because the Spirit of God is something that is foreign to them.

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Believe in yourselves as sons and daughters of God, men and women with unlimited potential to do good in the world.  Believe in personal virtue.  There is no substitute for it anywhere under the heavens.  Believe in your power to discipline yourselves against the evils which could destroy you.  Believe in one another as the greatest generation ever yet to live upon the earth.  — President Gordon B. Hinckley, CES Fireside, September 9, 2001

All of us, young and old, will do well to realize that attitude is more important than the score.  Desire is more important than the score.  Momentum is more important than the score. — Marvin J. Ashton, General Conference, October 1974

I hired a carpenter to help me restore an old farmhouse, and after he had just finished a rough first day on the job.  A flat tire made him lose an hour of work, his electric saw quit, and now his ancient pickup truck refused to start. While I drove him home, he sat in stony silence.  On arriving, he invited me in to meet his family.  As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching tips of the branches with both hands.  When opening the door, he underwent an amazing transformation.  His tanned face was wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small children and gave his wife a kiss.

Afterward he walked me to the car.

We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me.  I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier.

“Oh, that’s my trouble tree,” he replied.  “I know I can’t help having troubles on the job, but one thing’s for sure, troubles don’t belong in the house with my wife and the children.  So I just hang them up on the tree every night when I come home.  Then in the morning I pick them up again.  Funny thing is”, he smiled, “when I come out in the morning to pick ’em up, there aren’t nearly as many as I remember hanging up the night before.” — Anonymous

A person’s attitude is perhaps the hardest of all personal attributes to change.  If your attitude is right, then your life is made right.  If your heart is touched, your mind and way of thinking will change and your life will change for the better accordingly.  I believe we must become so immersed in the gospel of Jesus Christ that we become physically as well as mentally more and more like the Lord himself. We must yield our whole hearts to him.  What we then do is done not because we are asked to, nor because we are forced to, but because we want to.  Neither pressure nor force can be exerted upon us from outside, when what we do is done because it is our own choice and desire. It then makes no difference to us what other men may think, or say, or do.  Our hearts being committed wholly to God, what we do is done out of our love for and our trust in him.  We then serve God in every way we can because we have been converted, our attitude has been changed and we now desire to become like him both spiritually and physically. — Elder Theodore M. Burton, “The Need for Total Commitment,” Ensign, Jan. 1974, p. 115

Mormon is finishing his last letter to his son.  He has reminded him of some of the terrible problems of that time.  He has been candid in this, laying out for Moroni his own sad view of things as they were.  In summation, he has declared the most unpleasant thing people could hear from a prophet – that he could not recommend them unto God.  But then he says to his own son, “I recommend thee unto God,” and bears his witness and delivers his valedictory to Moroni in these blessed words:

“My son, be faithful in Christ; [that is where it starts and that is the heart of it all] and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ lift thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing his body unto our fathers, [that is, his resurrection] and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever” (Moro. 9:25).

Don’t let infamy, don’t let sin, don’t let what is happening in the world, weigh you down.  That is not what Christ is all about; don’t let it grieve you.  Let him lift you up.  Let him lift you up.  And let all that he represents for us rest in your minds forever. — Elder Marion D. Hanks, “An Attitude – The Weightier Matters,” Ensign, July 1981, p. 67

Have you ever found yourself doing something you thought was right, but doing it because you “had” to?  Did you ever keep a commandment of God with an attitude of resentment or self-righteousness, or even because you expected some immediate personal benefit?  I suppose most of us have had this experience.  Do you remember your feelings on such occasions?  Do you think such feelings will be ignored by a Father in Heaven who gave us the willpower we call agency?  Don’t such feelings tell us something about the desires of our hearts?  Under the law of God we are accountable for our feelings and desires as well as our acts.  Evil thoughts and desires will be punished.  Acts that seem to be good bring blessings only when they are done with real and righteous intent.

On the positive side, we will be blessed for the righteous desires of our hearts even though some outside circumstance has made it impossible for us to carry those desires into action. — Elder Dallin H. Oaks, Devotional and Fireside Speeches,1985-86, pp. 29, 31

No misfortune is so bad that whining about it won’t make it worse. — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, General Conference, April 2007

God expects you to have enough faith and determination and enough trust in Him to keep moving, keep living, keep rejoicing.  In fact, He expects you not simply to face the future (that sounds pretty grim and stoic); He expects you to embrace and shape the future – to love it and rejoice in it and delight in your opportunities. — Elder Jeffrey Holland

Ability is what you’re capable of doing.  Motivation determines what you do.  Attitude determines how well you do it. — Lou Holtz

Remember, a good attitude produces good results, a fair attitude fair results, a poor attitude poor results.  We each shape our own life, and the shape of it is determined largely by our attitude. — Elder M. Russell Ballard, “Providing for Our Needs,” Ensign, May 1981, p. 85

We must recognize that excellence and quality are a reflection of how we feel about ourselves and about life and about God.  If we don’t care much about these basic things, then such not caring carries over into the work we do, and our work becomes shabby and shoddy.  Real craftsmanship, regardless of the skill involved, reflects real caring, and real caring reflects our attitude about ourselves, about our fellowmen, and about life. — President Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, February 1978

This is a wonderful time to be living here on earth.  Our opportunities are limitless. While there are some things wrong in the world today, there are many things right, such as teachers who teach, ministers who minister, marriages that make it, parents who sacrifice, and friends who help.

We can lift ourselves, and others as well, when we refuse to remain in the realm of negative thought and cultivate within our hearts an attitude of gratitude.  If ingratitude be numbered among the serious sins, then gratitude takes its place among the noblest of virtues. — President Thomas S. Monson, Ensign, February 2000, p. 2-7

The original definition of the word resilience had to do with a material’s ability to resume its shape or position after being bent, stretched, or compressed. Today we commonly use the word to describe our ability to bounce back from adversity.

We know two things about adversity and resilience:  First, there is “an opposition in all things” (2 Nephi 2:11).  Second, obtaining anything of great worth often requires great sacrifice.

As children become resilient, they understand and accept these two facts.  They see life as challenging and ever changing, but they believe they can cope with those challenges and changes.  They view mistakes and weaknesses as opportunities to learn, and they accept that losing may precede winning.

As children develop resilience, they believe they can influence and even control outcomes in their lives through effort, imagination, knowledge, and skill.  With this attitude, they focus on what they can do rather than on what is outside their control. — Lyle J. Burrup, LDS Family Services, “Raising Resilient Children,” Ensign, March 2013, p. 13

“Verily I say unto you my friends, fear not, let your hearts be comforted; yea, rejoice evermore, and in everything give thanks.”  (D&C 98:1)

In light of such wonderful counsel, I think it is incumbent upon us to rejoice a little more and despair a little less, to give thanks for what we have and for the magnitude of God’s blessings to us, and to talk a little less about what we may not have or what anxiety may accompany difficult times in this or any generation.

For Latter-day Saints this is a time of great hope and excitement. . . . We need to have faith and hope, two of the greatest fundamental virtues of any discipleship of Christ. . . . We must believe that God has all power, that he loves us, and that his work will not be stopped or frustrated in our individual lives or in the world generally.  He will bless us as a people because he always has blessed us as a people.  He will bless us as individuals because he always has blessed us as individuals. — President Howard W. Hunter, “An Anchor to the Souls of Men,” BYU Devotional, Feb. 7, 1993

Let us remember, too, that greatness is not always a matter of the scale of one’s life, but of the quality of one’s life.  True greatness is not always tied to the scope of our tasks, but to the quality of how we carry out our tasks whatever they are.  In that attitude, let us give our time, ourselves, and our talents to the things that really matter now, things which will still matter a thousand years from now. — President Spencer W. Kimball, “First Presidency Message: A Gift of Gratitude,” Liahona, December 1977, p. 1

So much in life depends on our attitude.  The way we choose to see things and respond to others makes all the difference.  To do the best we can and then to choose to be happy about our circumstances, whatever they may be, can bring peace and contentment. — President Thomas S. Monson, “Living the Abundant Life,” Ensign, Jan. 2012, p. 4