Which Comes First, Attitude or Success?

I realized the other day that I never met a successful person who had a bad attitude, or lacked confidence. In fact, their entire worlds seemed more positive than most – and infinitely happier.

It made me wonder which came first – the success, the positive attitude or the confidence?


I couldn’t attribute it to the money, because I knew some of these people long before they had much of anything. I came to the conclusion that success was the outcome of the attitude, confidence, and a variety of other factors some inherent and some learned, but together that spelled a mindset destined for success.


I realized too, that those who had repeated success were those who took it in stride and didn’t let it go their heads.


So what did these people have in their formidable years that we didn’t?  We’ve already eliminated silver spoons. Looks?  Take a look and you’ll find that’s certainly not the case.  Nor is education.  As we pointed out in a previous blog, some never even finished school.


What stands out most, is that regardless of industry is that successful people share an unwaivering faith in themselves, and believe that regardless of how many times they might fail, if they persevered, success would ultimately be theirs.


No doubt a positive attitude contributes to success and helps eliminate the self-limiting beliefs so many of us get caught up on a daily basis, ( Let’s face it.  Carrying around all that old baggage is dead weight and eventually drags you down – both mentally and physically).


But there’s something else a positive attitude does that all of us strive for, yet seldom recognize it’s something we already own or well within our grasp.  It’s a little word called H A P P Y.


I hear people talk about times past ‘when I was happy.’  Or, ‘If I only had A,B or C, I’d be happy.’


What about today?


A positive attitude not only breeds success, it helps us appreciate what we have now, and makes us happier people. It’s self- perpetuating, and it’s light shines not only on ourselves, but extends to all those around us, personally and professionally. It builds confidence, negates self-doubt, and attracts positive energy. In fact, it acts like a magnet, drawing both people, and opportunity to your doorstep and increasing your likelihood for success.


Since we’re defined by our thoughts every bit as much as by our actions, I thought it might be interesting to see how some successful people think, so here are 27 quotes that  provide some food for thought about how attitude – and perspective can make for healthier, happier and help enrich our successful lives.


  1. “Look up to the sky.  You’ll never find rainbows if you’re looking down.” – Charlie Chaplin
  2. “Your problem is not the problem. Your problem is your attitude about the problem.” – Captain Jack Sparrow
  3. “To hell with circumstances. I create opportunities.’ Bruce Lee
  4. “If you think you are too small to be effective, you have never been in the dark with a mosquito.” – Betty Rees
  5. ”The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits.” – Albert Einstein
  6. “The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get into the office.” – Robert Frost
  7. “Sometimes good things fall apart so that better things can fall together.” – Marilyn Monroe
  8. “It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn’t give it up because by then I was too famous.” – Robert Benchley
  9. “Instead of thinking about what you’re missing  try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing.” – Anonymous
  10. “Be so good they can’t ignore you.  Steve Martin
  11. “Never dull your shine for somebody else.” – Tyra Banks
  12. “If being an egomaniac means I believe in what I do and in my art or music, then in that respect you can call me that… I believe in what I do, and I’ll say it.” – John Lennon
  13. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”—Steve Jobs
  14. “Some people say, ‘Never let them see you cry.’ I say, if you’re so mad you could just cry, then cry. It terrifies everyone.” -Tina Fey
  15. “Some people say you are going the wrong way, when it’s simply a way of your own.”— Angelina Jolie
  16. “Those who dance are considered insane by those who cannot hear the music.”  – George Carlin
  17. “Sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – Lewis Carroll
  18. “The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.” – Henry David Thoreau
  19. “If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.” – Steve Wright
  20. “You can’t have everything…where would you put it? “ – Steve Wright
  21. “History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.” – Winston Churchill
  22. “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.” – William James
  23. “I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.” – Pablo Picasso
  24. “A man only learns in two ways, one by reading, and the other by association with smarter people.” – Will Rogers
  25. “We would accomplish many more things if we did not think of them as impossible.” – Vince Lombardi
  26. “One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it’s worth watching.” – Anonymous
  27. “The moment where you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever being able to do it.” – Peter Pan



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