Chocolate Wisdom-Contagious

I find that happiness is contagious…most of the time. Even when I’m in a crummy mood if I’m around others that are upbeat and positive, their actions tend to lift me out of my funk. I especially find that true when I’m around Tanner, my Golden, but I digress…. However, I do wonder if it’s their positive happiness factor that changes my outlook, or is it a conscious decision to change (or not change) my attitude?

Can a person choose to be happy…or unhappy?

Do I change my attitude, which affects my behavior…or do I change my behavior, which causes my attitude to improve? My background in advertising has drilled into my head that behavior is influenced attitude. And attitude can be influenced with the right message, delivered in a way to provoke an action.

Merriam Webster says attitude is “a mental position with regard to a fact or state; a feeling or emotion toward a fact or state.” Behavior is “the manner of conducting oneself; anything that an organism does involving action and response to stimulation; the response of an individual, group, or species to its environment.

Sounds simple.

Not so much.

Like it or not, my attitude is usually shaped by the behaviors of others. Snip at me and I’m likely to snip back. Bring me chocolate and my mood immediately improves. So, your behavior affects my attitude…which most likely affects my behavior…which will affect your attitude about me…which will…….well, you get the idea.

So is it ever possible to choose your behaviors in spite of your attitude?

Yes, I think it is possible.

I hate to diet and exercise. Left to my own attitude, I’d easily weigh in at 300 pounds. But, despite my attitude about those two things, I have to watch what I eat and make sure I occasionally move. And the better I start to feel about how I look, the better my attitude becomes.

Crazy.

So which is it for you? Does Attitude determine your Behaviors, or does doing the Behaviors change your Attitude.

Either way, it’s a contagious cycle.

Choose Happy.

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8 thoughts on “Chocolate Wisdom-Contagious

  1. Is this like the chicken or the egg? I’m not sure. I do know since my mastectomy and chemo, when someone asks me how I am now, I say “I’m just GREAT!” with great enthusiasm and a big smile, and I really mean it. So is that an attitude or a behavior? I find myself to be happier and more content now – I think that’s because the little reminder that I am mortal was an eye opener. I think my attitude has affected my behavior. I think.

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    • I’m sure, being a survivor, you have a unique perspective on having and maintaining a positive attitude. Contentment….hmmm, another choice in life?

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  2. You said it! My attitude determines my behavior at first, however, the behavior others determines how my attitude shapes through the day. I wish it weren’t true, but it is…if someone is down or snapping, I can turn o a dime! Great post.

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    • It can be such a roller coaster! I understand the need to vent sometimes, but it’s important to surround yourself with positive energy to offset the negative.

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  3. Definitely a bit of both I think. I read some time ago that even the action of moving the facial muscles into a smile can help lift the spirits, so even if the last thing you feel like doing is to smile, going through the action will eventually make you feel better. It’s a little piece of faking it ’til you feel it I suppose. I also know what an effect negative attitudes can have on me – I can sometimes feel the light within me rapidly dwindling – so the opposite is also true.

    Congrats on your web win and your new site. It’s all looking great around here. 🙂

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    • Funny how smiling is sometimes so hard to accomplish. And then there’s those people who can just suck the joy right out of a room….(sigh). I hope I’m never one of those people. And thank you for the kind words about my new place! 🙂 (..she says while smiling!)

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