When everything comes crashing down, there is only one way to go…up!
This weekend I listened to a really inspiring speech about letting go of past hurts, difficulties and challenges and refocusing all your efforts on grabbing hold of the future and the amazing possibilities that lie before you. But one thing was clear, no matter how many blessings or opportunities come your way, the only way to really make the most of them was to have the right attitude. It is your attitude that will determine your altitude (i.e. how high you will soar). Is this something we already know? Yes, but it’s good to be reminded. Everyone in life, either on a personal or business level has had times when the chips are down, none of us are immune. But what really sets people or businesses apart is what they choose to believe and how they handle the situation.
Negative experiences in our life have a wonderful side, it’s just a question of whether we are willing to see it and believe it. They can be a true awakening moment and a catalyst for genuine growth.
There are many examples of public figures and businesses that have plunged from a soaring height to what appears to be an abyss, only to come back stronger, better, more respected, wanted.
Andre Agassi was number 1 in the world in 1995 but after a challenging relationship with Brooke Shields, a bad wrist injury, poor court performances and a bout of depression, his status plummeted 140 notches. But in time, he cleaned himself up and reclaimed the number 2 ranking, becoming the oldest player in history to reach this status.
Continental Airlines filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection twice but was nursed back to health by Gordon Bethune who led the company between 1994 and 2004 and famously created the ‘Go Forward Plan’, rebuilding employee moral, consumer trust and profitability only two years post filing for bankruptcy.
And perhaps the most famous of all …in 1985 Steve Jobs left Apple after losing the board members’ trust. Subsequently, sales dropped until Jobs returned in 1996 and the rest is history!
There are undoubtedly many factors that impact the ability to make a strong comeback. From a business perspective, strong leadership, vision and commitment are all important and I am willing to bet that a common factor was also having the right attitude and a willingness to embrace the future – to let the past become a learning experience rather than an impediment.
So next time we all have a “Debbie Downer” moment let’s flip things around, and remind ourselves how high we want to fly in life, and let our positive attitude help take us there.