From: Mind & Heart Matters

Dear Everybody,

Our kitchen has metal cabinets and with the use of magnets I continue to post inspiring articles, photographs, letters, comic strips and more. Just the other day as I headed down the hall I looked at an article I had posted right next to the door. I don’t think it was an accident that I stopped to read it. As you all know I feel there are no coincidences. It was a brief article by Charles Swindoll entitled ATTITUDE.

Before I share the article let me share a story. Years ago after giving a lecture about mind body medicine and healing I was leaving the building when a man and his wife came up to me. The wife explained that her husband wore a pin, which was the word ATTITUDE, on his lapel. I liked the idea and she went on to say that whenever her husband was not acting and living like a survivor she would walk over to him, take the pin in her hand and give it a little twist while stating, “Honey you need to get your attitude straightened out.”

I loved what they were doing because she was being his life coach in the way coaches should do it. She is not telling him what he did wrong or criticizing his behavior. She just let him know he needed to adjust his attitude to enhance his likelihood of having a successful outcome. Eventually I had someone let me know he had started making ATTITUDE pins after hearing me tell this story and I still have one or two I use on my jackets.

Now let me share Swindoll’s words with you and many more quotes are available via the internet: The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of ATTITUDE on life. ATTITUDE, to me, is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company…a church…a home. The remarkable thing is that we have a choice every day regarding the ATTITUDE we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…we cannot change the fact that people will act a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have and that is our ATTITUDE. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you……..we are in charge of our ATTITUDES.

ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING!!! I can tell you since noticing the above words I have felt a very different attitude towards life and all the problems, tests and difficulties it presents me with. And when my attitude changes the same events no longer represent problems, tests or difficulties to me. They are now my teachers. I hear the lyrics from a song which states: When you are going through Hell just keep on going before the Devil even knows you’re there.

I am going to find my pin and start wearing it every day. I like to put symbols up before me and let them become my therapists. I mentioned a while back a plaque hanging in my folk’s house that I never noticed until we were cleaning up their home after they died. It said: ENJOY YOURSELF. IT IS LATER THAN YOU THINK. So put these messages up around the house, on the fridge and I even use my wife’s lipstick to put messages of love on our bathroom mirror. And as the years go by we all experience our difficult days and life tests but when you walk into the bathroom and see an inspiring message about life and love there from years ago it puts everything back into its proper perspective and life goes on.

This year we had a horrendous failure of our roof and needed the entire roof replaced and now they are redoing several rooms to repair them, remove the mold and rotted wood, repair, repaint and more. The ATTITUDE I have is improving every day as I work at living the sermon. I love telling the guys doing the work that I will give them a list of songs they are allowed to play in the house while they are working. You all know how loud and blaring the stuff they play is to help them keep going. Yes, humor is a big part of ATTITUDE also.

Let me share some other of my kitchen therapy messages:

  1. God loves you and I am trying,
  2. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift.
  3. Out of difficulties grow miracles.
  4. Don’t feel totally, personally, irrevocably, eternally responsible for everything. That’s my job. GOD
  5. The state medical society has selected you as patient of the month. We know you will be pleased to be an important part of the educational program involving hundreds of medical students. Most of them will be dropping in to examine you this week.

And a letter from Mel Brooks, who really understands attitude, thanking me for sending him a copy of one of my books. “I love the cover. You take a nice picture, the only thing missing is a pony – kids in Brooklyn and the Bronx always took a nice picture on a pony!”

It’s your attitude. So what is going to create it? Are you empowered or a victim? What is your choice?

Peace, Love & Healing,
Bernie Siegel, MD

If you choose not to decide, you have made a choice.