How to Get (and Keep) a Positive Attitude

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How to Get and Keep a Positive Attitude

Are you wondering hot to get a positive attitude? Once you have it, are you struggling on how to keep it?

In sales, we face rejection every day. The fact is we hear 'no' many more times than we hear 'yes'. When we let it get us down, it shows to everyone we meet, including our customers, our colleagues and our family. Our negative attitude becomes our own worst enemy.

What Does Your Inner Voice Tell You?

A large part of what affects our attitude is our own self talk.  That little voice inside our head largely shapes how we see things and how we react to them. 

For example, I participate in a few charity golf tournaments every summer. At each one, I keep hearing the same comments from some of the participants. 'I never hit the ball well off the first tee.' and 'I won't make the putt because I am not a good putter.'

As it turns out, everyone who made those comments was right! They didn't hit well off the first tee. It wasn't that they couldn't hit the ball because they certainly did off the next tee, but why not the first?  The reason is they kept telling themselves they wouldn't. They thought it to be true therefore they made it be true.

The sociologist, Robert Merton called this a self fulfilling prophecy: What you think and believe will happen actually occurs because you will, either consciously or unconsciously, act in ways that cause it to happen.

Many bestselling books like Think and Grow Rich and The Secret have documented countless examples of history's greatest men and women who believed they could, and therefore did.

Be it sports or sales, it works the same way. We all have that inner voice that talks to us. What does yours say?  Do you tell yourself 'I can't make quota because our prices are too high.' Or do you think 'No one is buying right now because of the economy.'

Stop being your own worst enemy! By telling yourself you can't do it, you are making it so.

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10 Tips for Salespeople To Get and Keep A Positive Attitude

As a sales professional, you must make a conscious effort to stop being negative and start being positive. Here are 10 tips for salespeople, and everyone else for that matter, on how to get and keep a positive attitude.

  • Look for the positive in every situation, and look at every failure as a learning experience.
  • Think of every 'no' as the next step to a 'yes'.
  • Start and end your day talking to happy customers instead of just focusing on the ones that call to complain.
  • Start your day with a positive thought and end it with another. A cartoon, a sales joke or a daily motivational quote can put you in the right frame of mind, as will reminding yourself of your past victories. 
  • Congratulate yourself on the effort needed to close a sale rather than the close itself. Calculate how much commission you make per call. Set daily activity goals and relish in achieving them. Reward yourself when you do.
  • Associate with successful people who believe they can, and walk away from those who say they can't.
  • Turn off the gloomy evening news and read a motivational book or listen to inspirational music instead.
  • Exercise! Or create a playlist of upbeat and positive music and dance.
  • Surround your home, car and office with items that are inspirational to you.
  • Remind yourself every day what you are really thankful for.

Being Polite Makes You More Positive

I once saw a TV interview on our local morning show with Suzanne Nourse of the Protocol School of Ottawa as a guest. I have been told many times that I have a positive attitude. What I didn't realize until seeing this segment was how much kindness and civility in my day to day life helps to give me that.

In the interview, Suzanne talked about the importance of doing little things like making eye contact and smiling, saying please and thank you, even letting someone into traffic. She recommended putting our smart phones down and declaring dinner time as a technology free time so we can better engage with those around us. One of Suzanne's best recommendations was to use social media for good and not engage in all those political rants and nasty comments, and more importantly, unfollow those that do.

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    Then it hit me. I do that, as do many people I associate with. And we are all happier because of it. We are well mannered and show respect to everyone we meet, be it friends and family or total strangers. It’s a rule that there’s no screen time in our house between 5 and 7 pm. We simply don't interact with negativity on social media. We learned long ago that the more kindness and civility we show others, the more kindness and civility is given us in return. The net effect of all of this is that day to day life is less stressful and more enjoyable and we have a more positive outlook as a result.

    Want to have a more positive attitude? Start by smiling and saying hello to the next person you cross paths with on your afternoon walk.

    The Best Medicine to Get a Positive Attitude?

    30 plus years in sales has taught me is the right frame of mind is one of the keys to success. When I was going through cancer treatment a few years ago, I learned the importance laughter plays in that frame of mind. So, to start your day off on a positive note; to relieve stress after a long day on the road, or to kick off your weekly sales meetings; here are more than 75 of the best sales jokes. Why? Because laughter really is the best medicine.

    The Bottom Line

    Your thoughts control your outcomes and you control your thoughts. Choose wisely!  After all, as Dr. Robert Schuller once said, 'Every achiever that I have ever met says, “My life turned around when I began to believe in me.”  More motivational quotes.

    Aim Higher!

    Susan A. EnnsB2B Sales Coach and Author
    Schedule a free sales coaching strategy session with Susan here.

    “… what I can tell anyone, is simply this – If you want to learn and understand sales, talk to Susan.”

    Do you have a question about sales? You’re not alone.  Most salespeople have questions like this on how they can sell more. For the right answers, check out my book, Ask the Sales Coach-Practical Answers to the Questions Sales People Ask Most.

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