Friday, October 14, 2011

Be What You Are

I wasn't planning on writing any more on this blog until I moved to a new site.  But since I'm still getting hits and it's been 2 weeks, I thought I should dust off some drafts I had previously started.

Are you a victim?
Do you have a victim mentality?
Or are you a warrior!
I know that's a question but I'm putting an exclamation mark after it.

You may have heard the saying that life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.  How can someone who seems to have been handed a pitiful life situation be upbeat and positive and even seem to make something good out of adversity; while another who appears to have relatively minor problems be so depressed and depressing to be around?

Our attitude decides the outcome.

This is a topic similar to others that have been posted on this site.  My last post about the Pain Benefit is highly related, but these concepts warrant repeating and of being re-reminded about.

Do you have the kind of attitude that can be hit with a negative, absorb the impact and convert the energy into something that's positive?

But that's hard, you say.  Of course it is, but do it anyway.  Find a way.  Search for the reason, and lacking that, seek the upside.  What's the alternative?  The Victim Mentality and all the negativity that can flow, be reproduced even, out of that.  I'm not saying Positive Thinking is the solution to all your problems.  However, I am saying positive thinking is right and good.  Especially when positive lessons and actions flow out of that.  The victim is defeated and helpless.  The warrior sees opportunity for improvement (victory) and the option and ability to forge his own path.  He also has the ability to lift others up with him.  The victim cannot.

Live your life with purpose.  Be an encourager.  Look for opportunity.

Is life an adventure for you?  I was struck by Steve Jobs commencement speech at Stanford in 2005 when he said (and I paraphrase):  Do you wake up in the morning dreading what you've got to do that day, or looking forward to it?  He then said if he spent too many days dreading it, he needed to change what he was doing.  I've told my kids that it's wonderful to make good money, but it would be tragic if it was made doing something you didn't like.  40 hours a week X 50 weeks a year X 50 years of working is a long, long time to spend NOT liking what you're doing.

A victim is not on an adventure.  A victim toils in despair.
A warrior finds his path and is energized by walking it- and even struggling with it.

Have you had negative events in your life knock you down?  Of course you have.
Do you like it down there?  Nope.  Then get up.  What's the alternative?
The ironic thing is that most people who have the victim mentality are actually, like Gulliver, tied down with threads.  They can rise up but their mind is shackled with beliefs no stronger than threads that say they can't.  We are in a battle everyday.  Rather than be scared, be prepared, expect it. 
Be ready to engage and facilitate victory.

Be what you are - more than a conqueror.  


  1. Rob! It's so amazing that you posted about this because I have been thinking about this very topic all week. I posted something on my Facebook and Steve posted a status about a guy who was so positive, even in the worst circumstances. I definitely agree that positive thinking does not solve problems, but it definitely has a profound impact on your life and helps you face things better than if you remained a victim. Everyone should read this; I'm going to share it! :)

  2. I read both yours and Steve's posts and liked them. They helped influence this post. It's definitely a subject that resonates with me. I hope others find encouragement in it.

  3. I think that negative thinking is at an epidemic level in our culture today. A few years ago I resolved to stop complaining about things because there was SO MUCH complaining going on around me, all the time. Believe it or not, you will actually stand out as noticeably DIFFERENT from most people just by not complaining!

    Complaining, pity parties, and allowing ourselves to be (or remain) a victim are the same as us saying "I am willingly relinquishing my joy because I don't like the situation I find myself in." That's really sad. I want to keep my joy! I don't want to just give it away for free!

    I'm thankful to have positive people in my life, such as you two, who can help me keep my lenses focused in the proper direction.