(Attitude: noun, a settled way of thinking about someone or something, typically one that is reflected in a person’s behavior.)
I hear people make statements like, “That’s just me or I can’t change the way I am” all the time. In fact, most of us have probably said something like this to ourselves or someone else, at least once.
A lot of people believe declarations like those are facts of life that cannot be changed; they believe, “they are who they are,” and there’s nothing they can do about it.
But the truth is statements like these are not facts; they are excuses that keep you thinking small and make you more inclined to unconsciously react to people and situations out of habit, as opposed to acting consciously from a position of power.
Changing your attitude is a choice.
I have a family member who used to get on my nerves every time we saw each other. No matter how many times I told myself I was not going to allow him to upset me, he always did. I used to ask the Lord to change him or to at least change the dynamics of our relationship. I would have been happy to simply not be irritated when we had to be around each other. That didn’t happen so I started avoiding family gatherings he might be attending, but that didn’t always work out either.
The weirdest thing about this situation is I’ve been studying and teaching Spiritual Laws for years. I know that we attract what we focus on, so why did it take me so long to realize that I was getting exactly what I expected from our encounters. I was making myself miserable and blaming him. Duh! If a change was going to be made, I was the one who would have to make it. I had to consciously release those old beliefs that weren’t serving me and partner with the Holy Spirit to create the reality that I desired.
“As a man thinketh.”
My attitude toward him was created by my thoughts. I could continue to give my power away by believing he could irritate me or I could stop making excuses and take the wheel. Once I chose to change the thoughts that put me in negative space whenever he was around, our interactions changed. It didn’t happen overnight, but it happened.
We may not always get to choose our outward circumstances. At some point, we all have to deal with difficult problems, people, situations etc.. There’s no getting around it. But just because you’ve always reacted a certain way doesn’t mean you have to continue to do so. You can change the spirit of your mind.
Ephesians 4:23-AMP says, “And be continually renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh, untarnished mental and spiritual attitude]”
Being made new in the spirit of your mind doesn’t just happen. You have to make a conscious choice and then you have to do the work.