Attitudes: What are they and Where do they come from

Have you ever wondered about attitudes? How they can influence your actions and reactions ? Attitudes define how we think and react to words spoken. Do you ever have a day when you wished you had kept your mouth shut? Boy, I have. It seems as though you started an unofficial debate and you were not prepared with proper facts to back you up.

I grew up in a small house that contained parents, five girls , two boys and assorted pets. Our house was full of noise, laughter, fights, debates, arguments, discussions and attitudes. Everyone would would be yelling their opinions loudly and and calling for mother. Mother would not let whatever was being discussed develop into a full blown chaotic situation. Mother was referee and judge. You did not argue with the judge’s decision. Any comments were muttered under your breath. If we ever said what we wanted to out loud, we would have to suffer the consequences. Mom was great at defusing situations without showing favoritism. Although I personally thought she had favorites and I was not one of them. I remember that I did complain a lot about all the chores I had to do and mother would always respond with a saying. Her favorite was you can only do what a mule can do. I didn’t even try to figure that one out but I decided that a mule only works when he wants to. But that did not work for me. I do not remember mother having negative attitudes. She was such a positive person. Her decisions were fair and just for all concerned. She always looked for the positive in people.

Eventually we grow up and develop our own personalities. And then we had friends who would influence the way we acted. Before long, you begin to develop your very own opinions and attitudes to whatever was going on in your life. Attitude adjustments are necessary at all times of your life.

I got married, had children, helped my husband in his business, cleaned house, became a part time chauffeur and room mother. I became a referee trying to please everyone. Every day had a crisis and it started with a bad attitude that was negative. I was always trying to stay calm but it only lasted a short time. You usually had a family member who had one attitude and it was negative. You couldn’t even have a conversation with them. I would try to find something positive about this person but failed to do so. Bad attitudes create a negative atmosphere and before you know it you are positively negative. It is true, negativity causes negativity.

One day at Barnes and Nobles, I found myself in the self help section. Over the years I bought a lot of self help books and journals. I started writing about how the negative atmosphere was effecting my outlook on my life. I was not a happy person. Eventually, I had to destroy my journals because they contained personal expressions and feelings I did not want to share with my family. I will admit writing my negative thoughts helped me to change my attitude. It was a slow process but in the end it was good for my mental health. I was becoming the person I felt comfortable with.

Websters dictionary defines attitude as a manner of acting, feeling, or thinking that shows one’s disposition, opinions, etc. WOW! This described me to a tee. I managed to use all of the above at one time or another.

Everybody responds to others attitudes or opinions. Something in the voice or the manner of speaking can trigger our response. What causes negative feelings that suddenly pop up? Is it the circumstances happening to you at the moment? Is it a feeling that you don’t want to deal with right now? Are you allowing others to influence your attitude? You need to search your feelings to find out what triggers your response to what is being discussed and your feelings of defending your opinions. I personally feel that people with negative attitudes or opinions have a knack for making everyone miserable. Bottom line, negative attitudes and opinions are a waste of time and will get you nowhere.

How do you go about changing the way you think and act? You start by changing your thoughts. Try to spend time with family or friends who have a positive attitude. This will help you to get a better idea of how nice it is to be a positive person. You can choose people who like to listen to you without trying to change you. Our attitude or response is a way of expressing our self. We have a choice of positive or negative. When you allow your thoughts to dictate your actions, be prepared to accept the consequences. There is a popular quote about accepting what you cannot change and change the way you look at them. When you focus on being positive, you are changing the way you act and feel. Having a positive attitude makes me feel better. Did you know it is easier to smile than to frown? When you frown you get wrinkles. When you do have a negative view and you will, try to find something positive about it.

I am not saying I do not have negative thoughts, attitudes or views because I do. The negative part of your personality is always with you. Every morning I ask the Lord for an attitude adjustment. It is important that I set the tone for the day. My days are better if I maintain a positive demeanor with a smile. But, there are days when that negative attitude pops up and makes everybody miserable, including me. Nothing happy about that. One more thing about being negative, it takes up energy and makes you tired and mad. Being positive does make your life easier and happier. Do you know laughter is contagious?

It was time for me to make a commitment to myself. I am going to have a positive attitude all day. I am going to be a positive person all day. If I have to bite my tongue from verbally answering in a negative way, I will. If I want my day to be pleasant and productive, I have to be positive. Enjoying your life begins with the thoughts and actions you choose. Remember to breathe, to think of something that makes you smile, tell yourself this is going to be a good day, thank the Lord for all his blessings, and keep your mind, mouth, and thoughts positively positive. Did you know positive people enjoy life and have more fun.  Shirley Sadocchi

>> Read More


Do you ever question yourself about your relationship with God? Do you think you are becoming the person that God expects you to be? Or are you feeling that you are not progressing with your spiritual journey? I have asked myself all of the above questions at one time or another. One day I asked myself, am I trying with all my heart or am I just going through the motions that would please God. What was holding me back? Was it my reluctance to let go of the past and move on, or am I dragging my feet because I do not feel worthy to meet God’s requirements to be a good Christian. It is time for me to get serious about my relationship with God.

For years I have gone to various Bible studies, searching for ways to become a woman of God. The latest Bible study has made me look at where I am and where I want to be. I needed to know where I was in Christ and Christ in me. I was a part-time Christian. I took my relationship with God for granted. I never thought about what God wanted from me. I needed to re-evaluate my Spiritual life. I want to open my heart to God and His Presence in my life. I may not spend the time I want with God but I know that I can talk to Him any time. I am going to fulfill that need I have been searching for.. to have God’s Presence in my life. In the past I was reading scripture but not applying His word to my everyday life. God’s words are guidelines for each day. I cannot pick and choose His words for my situation because that would be controlling what I think I want to do. God is so patient. He is still waiting for me to stop being so busy so I can spend time reading and talking to Him.

I had to stop trying to figure out where God belonged in my life. In my head so I can understand His words or in my heart so I can live the way He would want me to. I have this image of God in His Glory by my side, holding on to my hand so I won’t fall, as we go down the road. I do experience His blessings every day. I still need to make some changes before I can be right with God.

I made a list of changes I needed to address before I could continue on my journey. I would like to share them with you: One is about forgiveness. It was necessary for me to let go of past hurts and feelings.God is very clear that forgiveness is necessary for living a Godly life. In order for me to pursue my journey, I really had to make an effort to let go of those feelings that have kept me in bondage. I had to let go of that stranglehold on my life. It was keeping me from moving in God’s direction. I found out that forgiveness brings peace of mind. You cannot hate others and love God at the same time. Jesus showed us that he forgave all those who treated him with cruelty. God says I have to forgive those who have hurt me so I can move forward and devote myself to becoming a good Christian.

Two is about attitudes. It was time to let go of pity parties, pre-occupations, giving up, fear, despair, worry and frustrations. I do not need any of this in my life but guess what, one or the other would show up to cause chaos. I am only human and I make mistakes daily. My thoughts become my actions. I allow negative thoughts to take over some time and I do not like it. So in order to change direction, I start talking to the Lord about what is going on and I need His guidance in this situation. I find that if I stop and take a deep breath and focus on the Lord, the problem can be taken care of in a calm manner.

Three is about being competitive with others. I plead guilty when comparing my achievements with others. It is boasting about all your wonderful abilities. Most of us are guilty of this action. We believe our good deeds will be approved by the Lord. Believe me, what I did or do in my life is a small trifle to what God does every day. It is wrong for us to assume we can do wondrous things. God is sovereign and Holy. God created the world and every thing on earth. He is in control of the universe. There is no way we can ever surpass His creations. Anything we accomplish we should glorify God, for without Him it would be impossible.

The fourth is about treatment of others. Mistreatment of others, whether in words or physical abuse, is not an option when dealing with your family or others. Mistreatment covers a lot of territory. It is hard to accept any form of mistreatment as a part of your life. Jesus suffered from cruel and inhuman treatment and He accepted it with forgiveness and grace. It was hard for me to show forgiveness when I was treated badly. Resentment and revenge are two of the feelings that are foremost in your reactions. God does not want any hostile thoughts to clutter up my journey. Besides, life is short and I don’t need this kind of treatment.

The fifth item I needed to work on was trust issues. Trusting people or things is not everlasting. Things and people come and go in our life but God will stay with you. In the past I have trusted someone’s word only to find out that it was untrustworthy. I still find it hard to trust people. In today’s world trust is hard to come by. To trust things  doesn’t work, because things don’t last. They come and go according to one’s whims. Things and people are transitory, in and out of your life. You can always trust God. You can always depend on God. God never goes back on His words and is always there for me waiting to trust and depend on Him. God will never leave me. His love for me is everlasting.

The sixth reason has to do with obedience. I had to stop thinking I could ask Jesus for His help then decide that I could do it myself. Just couldn’t wait for results. It’s like driving down the middle of the road, I can change my directions any time I feel like it. Making a U-turn is not a good idea. Changing directions in most cases is not safe. It is taking me away from the Lord. In order for me to be connected and committed to the Lord, I have to stop taking detours and going on my own way. In other words, focus on the Lord and go in the direction he wants me to.

The seventh is about dependence on the Lord. With the Lord I can endure. God wants me to be brave enough to surrender all my troubles and trials to Him. Dependence on God helps you to face the unknown. Fear has a way of keeping you weak. Only God can conquer these fears for me. I depend on God each day to show me the way to His light.

To get God’s attention is to talk to Him. Prayers are always welcome. God is ready to listen to anything you have to say. He also likes our prayers to be specific and consistent. If you feel your prayers haven’t been answered, don’t give up. God in His time answers all prayers. I love the idea that I can talk to God any time and anywhere, with the Holy Spirit helping and interceding on my behalf.

As I continue on my journey, I have so much to look forward to. God has given me the Bible with His words of wisdom. God has given the world his son, Jesus, who died on the cross for my sins. God gives us the Holy Spirit to live in our hearts. God gives love, peace, and hope to all who seeks His Presence in their life. God wants to participate in my life. He wants me to trust and depend on Him unconditionally. What a wonderful feeling to know that God is my refuge in times of distress; He is my salvation, saving me from the  world; and my Savior, who is there for me forever. He is eternal.

Shirley Sadocchi

>> Read More