Welcome All!

If you do not adapt, if you do not learn, you will wither, you will die.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Monopoly, Chutes & Ladders and the Power of Attitude

In their book “High Altitude Leadership” Chris Warner and Don Schmincke discuss two different kinds of luck. The first one is pure luck. The luck (good or bad) that just happens by chance. This is the case with the game Chutes & Ladders. When our children were younger they loved this exciting, unpredictable game. And even though their chances of winning did not increase no matter how often they played it, even though it is just a matter of luck as soon as you spin the wheel, they would feel so proud and happy upon their victory. And of course they did, because winning a game is fun. And even though they disputed this many times (“I’m just better than you mom!”), there is no relationship with skill whatsoever.

The second type of luck is skill-based luck like the ‘luck’ in games such as Risk or Monopoly. The luck you (can) actively create using your insights and skills in a smart way, like the buying and selling of streets and houses in Monopoly. This is skill-based luck you can influence. One major ingredient for skill-based luck is not a skill, however, but your attitude. It has been widely researched and documented, including in the medical world, that people with a positive mental attitude get more accomplished, attract more successful people, recover quicker from illnesses or from an unwise move in a game for that matter. One such specific example of a positive attitude is imagining how things could have been worse and not dwelling on ill fortune that comes your way, again, applicable to dealing with life’s events as with bad moves in all kinds of games. If you decide (because it is a decision, whether conscious or not, and often learned and shaped early in life by the role models and the kind of guidance we received) to take control of the situation, to re-shape your environment, to rethink your options, to re-design your goals and strategy, to re-define, re-assess, and appreciate what’s left and what new possibilities can do for you, you are in charge by the power of your attitude. It’s the attitude, the look on life, the approach you choose that influences everything else. Looking on the bright side of things and working through hardship, searching for ways to benefit from what is now inevitable sure isn’t always an easy task, fra from, but as soon as you start pitying yourself, focusing on the negatives and allowing yourself to be sucked into the victim role you’re doomed for depressed moods, hopelessness, and self-defeat which than sets in motion a halo-effect, negatively influencing your thinking, feeling, deciding, and what you aspire to accomplish.
So my advice for the weekend: Reflect on your attitude. Reflect on your attitude in good times and in difficult times.  In what way and in which situations is your atttitude of service to you? Where do you see opportunity for change and growth, and what is it that you need to get there?

Good luck. The attitude-based luck that is!

No comments:

Post a Comment