This is the eighth in a series of posts about the lessons I wish I’d learned earlier in life.

I was talking to a friend of mine last week and somehow we got on the topic of a new business idea. A few minutes later, he cut me off and declared, “This is never going to work. It takes money to make money and I don’t have much of that.” I wasn’t sure how to respond so I asked him why he’d turned negative all of a sudden. His response: “I’m not being negative – I’m being realistic.”

I’ve heard that before.

Bright sun over a beautiful island

Here’s the thing though – find all the negative people you know and ask them about their attitudes. You’ll notice that they never view themselves as negative people.

What I’ve noticed is that negative people tend to adopt a defeatist mindset while positive people focus on creating opportunities. It’s also interesting to note that you don’t see a whole lot of successful people with a negative outlook on life. People who are focused on the negative almost always find a way to talk themselves out of pursuing interesting opportunities.

For a moment, let’s pretend that I’m going to give you a business idea that you think is great. Which response are you more likely to have?

Response “A”: “Starting a new business is too expensive. I have a mortgage, a car payment, blah blah blah. I can’t afford to shell out any additional money right now for start-up costs. I certainly don’t want to give up any of the fun money I stash away for entertainment and boozing!”
Response “B”: “Guess I’ll cut out my morning latte and a few meals out each week for a while to free up money in my budget. Small sacrifices now will be well worth it after I’ve put in the hard work and can watch my new idea grow.”

Now, which response is more likely to get you ahead?

If you find that you tend to lean toward the negative, don’t beat yourself up. Change your attitude up – start focusing on creating opportunities for yourself and the rest will take care of itself.

Image Credit: notsogoodphotography