I did a google search for the definition of attitude. The box below is a copy of the first definition that it showed.
- a settled way of thinking or feeling about someone or something, typically one that is reflected in a person’s behavior.“she took a tough attitude toward other people’s indulgences”
- NORTH AMERICANinformaltruculent or uncooperative behavior; a resentful or antagonistic manner.“I asked the waiter for a clean fork, and all I got was attitude”
Just about throughout my life I have always heard that another person does not have the inherent ability to “make” us happy, sad, or angry.I know that there are many more emotions, but these are the main ones that come into my mind first. The ability to be, happy, sad, or angry, is totally within us. Not just on a daily basis, but also on a minute by minute basis. We alone determine our own feelings. It does, however, help when we wake up with a good and/or happy attitude. If we wake up being grumpy, then the rest of the day will probably go down hill from there. Although, it is in our power to change it.
Whatever time of the day it is that we realize that we are being grumpy and argumentative, we have the ability to change it right then and there! The question is, “Do we have the determination and desire to change our attitude at that moment?”, or do we want to go on being miserable for the remainder of the day?
When we think about our emotions and resulting actions or reactions, there are certain words that come to mind dealing with the issue. The words are,ability, desire, decision choice, and willpower.
Now to let you know my feelings about these words.
Ability – this is the power we have deep down inside of us that determines every conscious move we make. It does not include movements like breathing, blinking, coughing, sneezing, yawning, or things like that. Those movements are involuntary and they happen whether or not you want them to.
Desire – you have to have the “want – to” in order to change the state of mind, that you are in at the moment, that is making your mood one that you don’t want to have.
Decision – this is when you decide what feeling you want to have (because this will be the mood that you will be in until you go through the change process again).
Choice – is when your decision is put in motion to actually change your mood.
Willpower – your actual inner strength being put into motion. This is where you actually use your abilities that you have within you.
Like I said above, just before I defined the words, these are my feelings. Your feelings may be very different from mine. I have not been trained in any of the psychological areas of life. I am merely calling upon my own experiences in writing this post.
I did a google search for the definition of perception. The box below is a copy of the first definition that it showed.
- the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through the senses.“the normal limits to human perception”
So far, I have mainly talked about our attitude. Now I will go on to our perception. This is our view on what we think another person’s attitude is towards us at the time of our encounter with them. This means whether we perceive them to be angry with us, happy with us, proud of us, disgusted with us, or however we think they are at the time.
Like I said above, just before I defined attitude, these are my feelings. Your feelings may be very different from mine. I have not been trained in any of the psychological areas of life. I am merely calling upon my own experiences in writing this post.
I have found that most people exhibit their bad behavior the worse when they are tired, sick, or upset and sad. In other words, when someone else is out of sorts for any reason or another, that will be when they will act the worst towards other people. This is the time that it is the hardest to do any self talk, so that you won’t, in turn, be out of sorts with them.
I know for a fact that when someone comes at me with a sarcastic attitude, I usually respond not too kindly. Granted, I am not proud of it, but I am guilty of it. This post is as much for me as it is for my readers. There is definitely a lot of work that I have to do to change my perception and my attitude when other people say or do something that I do not like.
When the other person is being sarcastic, argumentative, or just insulting, we have to do our best not to do one of those bad exercises. We have to refrain from, jumping to conclusions. This particular “exercise” can have grave repercussions. If I don’t take it into consideration that they may have; just heard some bad news, had a hard day at work, come down sick during the day, had something happen to a family member, or any number of serious reasons for their ill mood, then I could make things a whole lot worse by my resulting attitude to my perception of what is going on.
Many times, I am guilty of thinking that the other person just didn’t want to have anything to do with me, and that was why they didn’t call back, or come over. I may have come across in a negative way, and they are just perceiving me wrong, and their attitude is in response to their perception of me.
What I am going to say next is one of the hardest things to do, for anybody, period. When we are getting ready to respond to anything that another person has said or done, we need to stop and think about how what we are going to say could be perceived. If there is any possibility that it could be perceived incorrectly, then we need to consider, if by just changing a few words a difference could be made in that perception.
One very important thing to remember is how and when to use certain words, and they are NEVER and ALWAYS. Chances are that there is hardly any way that someone has NEVER done whatever they are being accused of, like I have NEVER told a lie before. I don’t think that there is anybody, that if they are honest, has NEVER told a lie. By the same token I don’t think that there is anybody, that can honestly say, I have ALWAYS done whatever it is that they are trying to say that they have ALWAYS done. Such as I have always remembered to turn off the coffee pot. There has more likely than not been a few times that they forgot.
However, the word ALMOST in front of those two words is acceptable. The word ALMOST changes everything. Like I have ALMOST NEVER told a lie. Surely when they were children they told a few lies. So by using the word ALMOST, their statement will be true. The same is true with I have ALMOST ALWAYS remembered to turn off the coffee pot. We need to be careful about how we defend ourselves with these words. The misuse may come back and bite you in the knee.
I am trying to bring up as many different scenarios as I can think of, to cover as many reactions and perceptions as I can. The best word I can think of for this example is the word GREAT. When I was younger, and I am 63 now, this word was always positive. It was used for someone having done something very well or having been very nice to another person. For example, consider the following two sentences. You did a GREAT job with building that dog house. You are being praised for having completed the dog house, and doing it well. The next one is, That was GREAT of you to carry her groceries in for her, because she has a hard time going up her porch stairs. You are being praised for doing a good deed.
Now I will use the word in a negative way. Oh GREAT, you just broke the phone when you dropped it. You are being reprimanded for having done something wrong or bad. You broke the phone, and phones are necessary for many things in everyday life. The biggest one being to call for help when it is necessary. If the phone is broken, then you can’t call the doctor, the police, the fire department, or the emergency service. So needless to say the person whose phone you broke is very upset with you.
On the other hand, if the person was wanting to punish their teenager by taking their phone away, and you broke the phone, then the sentence would be turned around to be positive. It is GREAT that you broke it and they did not have to take it away from their teenager. You in essence are the one that took the phone away by breaking it. However, in this scenario, the treenager will be very very upset with you.
Why I am using the word GREAT is because of how the same word can be used in all three scenarios. In two of them it is in a positive way, but in the other it is used in a negative way.
Now, for the main reason that I am even mentioning this is because of the prevalence of texting nowadays. There are very few people that don’t text in this day and time. Other than in the case of informing a family member of an emergency situation, or to verify a meeting or dinner date, I, myself hate texting, just for the reason I pointed out above.
let’s say that you and your friend have recently had a disagreement or argument.The two of you are texting back and forth. The friend tells you something that your return text only contains the word “Great”. You may be meaning it in a positive way, but your friend is still upset with you, and they take it in a negative way. It is possible and even probable that that one word, taken in the wrong way, may start or rehash the argument all over again. And, depending on how long it is before the two of you see each other again, there could be a lot of seething going on. Obviously, when you do see each other again, the meaning of the text will probably come to light and be brought up in the conversation. The conversation may start with a question such as, “What did you mean by saying, “Great in your text? What have I done now?”
Now it is possible that there may end up being another argument. Even though the two of you may have gone on your separate ways, taking it for granted that things are OK, your friend may still be feeling a little hurt from the previous argument. When she sees just the one word, Great, she may have had a bad day at work, and immediately thinks that you are beginning the argument all over again.
If this hadn’t have happened to me, there is probably no way that I would have even thought of this scenario to bring it up. I am just trying to point out that with the current double meaning of certain words, you have to be very careful when using them. To avoid a misunderstanding, if it is possible in any way that what you said in the text can be taken either way, then you may need to send a longer text to point out exactly what you are trying to say. I would rather be fussed at for sending a long text than to start another argument.
I hope that this post helps to point out that we need to always think before we speak. This is especially true, if it is possible that what we say may spark an argument. If you have any questions after reading this post, please do not hesitate to ask them in the comments.
My friend has graciously agreed to do a video of me demonstrating the different tonations, to be coming soon. As he is a very busy person, he will do this as soon as he can. The video will demonstrate how the toneation in one’s voice can absolutely change the whole scenario that you may find yourself in. It can change it from very negative and offensive to positive and inviting. This is true with many words that mean a positive thing with one tone in the voice, but mean something very negative with another tone in the voice.