Timeout. There’s one second on the clock. You have one free throw to tie the game. You look to your coach. He looks at you, frowning. “Might as well close your eyes. Untie your shoes. Why’d they have to foul you, of all people?” You turn to your teammates. No one makes eye contact. Shoulders are slumped. They’re right. You are not going to hit this shot. Forget that you’ve practiced for this moment for years in your driveway. Here you are, where opportunity awaits. You walk back to the free throw line. You dribble the ball three times. Glance up into the stands to see your parents have already left to beat traffic. Soon enough, the buzzer sounds, and your season has ended.
Does this situation seem true? I hope not. Your coach tells you that you can do this. Teammates are full of encouragement. Your family proudly makes eye contact, a smile beaming with pride. You are full of nerves, but bursting with optimism. What’s the difference? Attitude. You can change your life by changing your attitude.
Every day, we are faced with a choice. Hopefully you don’t think I am going to say wearing deodorant–that’s a necessity. We can rise and shine, or we can rise and whine. No matter our profession or age, we are faced with obstacles, touch choices, and potential failure. Stand up to these challenges. Smile. And approach each day with a confidence that each day will be the best yet.
Do you have a one-year-old at home? Try smiling and laughing when changing his or her diaper (and remember they may be changing yours one day). A big sales meeting coming up? Plan and prepare for the client, but also have confidence in your product or service and yourself. Instead of just accepting you’ll stop your workouts at the gym, find a partner who will encourage you when you think about quitting. Too often, we fail because we don’t think we can. Imagine the change in your life when you KNOW you will. And if you don’t? Well, you’ll try again.
Have faith in the people in your life. Your friend has a big interview? Make sure they know they’re a great candidate. Tell your children how smart they are. Support your coworkers. Your attitude can alter your life, as well as others’.
Walt Disney famously said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” You’ll have a number of opportunities to hit a game-winning free throw in life–maybe it’s in a meeting with your boss or running a mile for the first time in years. No matter the challenge you are faced, look around at the important people in your life for support. Believe in yourself. And make your dreams come true.