“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.” ~Charles R. Swindoll
The quote by itself doesn’t quite give you the whole story so let’s put it into perspective using the two examples of the same day.
James is leaving for work as usual at 7.30 a.m, he gets into his car and drives down to the bottom of the road where he’s going to make a left turn, he knows he has the right of way so he doesn’t slow down, however, this morning he gets a surprise because another driver cuts him off. That’s the 10%.
90% Example 1.
His first reaction is to raise his fist and give the one fingered salute, which is followed by honking of his car horn for another two minutes as he chases after the maniac in the other car. Luckily for the other driver he’s not going the same direction and turns off at the next junction but he departs the scene he’s given some more verbal abuse. Then James continues on his way to work still fuming about the incident.
Upon reaching work, James still hasn’t calmed down and barely acknowledges his work colleagues, they know James and with a upwards glance to each other they decide to give him a wide berth for the day. They go out for lunch and leave James uninvited. James notices this and is angry at not being asked, he decides he’s not going to give those twats another moment of his time for the remainder of the day.
James arrives home at 6.30 p.m still in a relatively foul mood, his family notices this and decide to let him get over it before interacting with him. He eats his dinner in silence and then goes into the sitting room to watch some of his favourite television programmes.
Around 9.30 p.m James decides to have an early night. He lays down and tries to go asleep, but the events of the day keep him from his sleep. James wonders how everybody else could have given him such a miserable day. First it was the lunatic driver, then his work colleagues and then his family ignored him. Ahhhhh.
90% Example 2.
James’ first reaction to not being hit by the other car is to breathe a sigh of relief and think how lucky he was that he wasn’t going any faster than he actually was. He has been driving for a number of years so he understands other drivers can make a mistake from time to time. James continues on his journey whistling to himself, all the time thinking this must be his lucky day.
James arrives at work and salutes his friends telling them he’ll be joining them for lunch as usual. They smile back at him, giving him the thumbs up.
During the morning James’s boss invites him into his office and informs him that due to his performance over the previous month he is being rewarded with a gift voucher for the local diner. James leaves the office with a smile beaming across his face.
James went for lunch with his friends and they enjoy a delicious lunch, after they had finished their meal James told them he was going to pick up the bill today. His friends told him that wasn’t necessary, however, when James told them about the voucher, they gladly accepted his offer and gave their gratitude in return.
James arrived home at 6.30 p.m as usual and was met by warm smiles from his family, shortly after he arrived home they sat down and enjoyed a family meal. After the meal and all the cleaning up was done, they agreed to have a movie evening. They went into the sitting room, spent the usual 30 minutes picking what film to watch. The film they decided to watch was Onwards. Everybody really enjoyed the film because it had something all the family could appreciate. A real feel-good movie.
Bedtime arrived for James and as just as he was drifting off to sleep he spent a few moments reflecting on the day and thinking , how lucky am I to have such a great life, a great family and great friends.
The examples above are but one day in the life of James, however, if you consider you live your life one day at a time, James with a negative attitude could have a life-time of one disappointment after the other, while James with a positive attitude will spend his life thinking how lucky he is.
I’ll leave you with one final thought.
Your attitude to life will determine what you attract into it. I hope you choose a positive one.