Personal Development Tools

Attitude by Charles Swindoll

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.  Attitude, to me is more important than facts.  It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do.  It is  more important than appearance, giftedness or skill.  It will make or break a company….a church….a home.  The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day.  We cannot change our past… we cannot change the inevitable.  The only thing we can do is play on the one thing we have , and that is our attitude…. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90%  how I react to it.  And so it is with you…we are in charge of our Attitudes.”


To measure your communication skills, answer the following with (a) often, (b) sometimes, or (c) rarely.

1. I am a good listener and five my full attention to the speaker.

2. During a conversation, I make the other person feel important with nods, smiles, comments, and encouragement.

3. Do you listen for the sake of listening, or listen to gain a real understanding of what is being said?

4. I concentrate on what the other person is saying by focusing my attention on the words, the ideas, and the feelings related to the subjects.

5. I look at the other person’s face, mouth, eyes, and hands when they are speaking.

6. I maintain a pleasant smile during a conversation.

7. I ask questions when I don’t understand something, being careful not to embarrass or ‘put down’ the other person.

8. Do you empathize with the other person, trying to put yourself in the other’s place so that you can see their point of view?

9. During a conversation, I try to put worries, fears, and problems out of my mind so that I can listen well.

10. I react to the main points and ideas of a conversation, and not to the person’s looks or personality.

11. When I am trying to understand a point of view, I do not argue, therefore mentally blocking out my ability to reason.

12. I listen for the main points of a conversation and am not distracted by illustrative materials such as; examples, stories, and statistics, etc.

13. I wait until all the facts are in before making hasty judgments.

14. When a person has an emotional need to talk, I do not sidetrack the conversation with a maze of detail.



1. Did I remember to smile – all during the day?
2. Did I keep my temper under control – all day?
3. Did I constantly try to have my own way?
4. Did I say something complimentary to someone?
5. Did I “fault-find” yesterday?
6. Did I interrupt anyone while they were talking?
7. Did I do anything that would make people like me better?
8. Did I help a fellow worker -at least once during the day?
9. Did I laugh at mistakes others made?
10. Did I let the other fellow do his share of the talking?
11. Did I “gripe” at, or to my fellow workers?
12. Did I remember to say “thank you” to my customers?
13. Was I tactful in taking care of customers?
14. Did I make fun of customers behind their backs?
15. Did I lose patience with any customer?
16. Did I show genuine interest when customers talked to me?
17. Did I give a customer or fellow worker a “smart-aleck” answer?
18. Did I get into an argument with a customer or fellow worker?
19. Did I keep any customer waiting while I kept on talking with another employee or visitor?
20. Did I wait on the “mink-coated customer” out of turn while the “ragged-coated customer” waited?
21. Be wisely selfish –By being kind and courteous you in return bring more happiness to yourself. Then they in return gain happiness.

Ten Commandments for Happiness

  1. Honor thy body, for it is a vehicle most precious. Thou shalt eat nourishing food, exercise regularly and relax often.
  2. Thou shalt look upon work as thy greatest source of happiness and find great satisfaction in thy accomplishments.
  3. Thou shalt have a worthwhile purpose in life and allow nothing to interfere with its fulfillment.
  4. Thou shalt budget time, money, and energies so that thou art never without reserve.
  5. Thou shalt not ignore the desires of the heart, but shall supplement dreams with action.
  6. Thou shalt renew the wellsprings of life with ever-expanding horizon of achievement.
  7. Thou shalt not covet they neighbor’s looks, possessions, or talents, but shall do all in thy power to develop and make use of thine own.
  8. Thou shalt develop a sense of values and be unperturbed by thine or others’ follies.
  9. Thou shalt have faith and believe in the, as yet unseen, and have the courage to face the unknown future.
  10. Thou shalt live each day as an adventure and strive for a balanced life in which there is time for the enjoyment of THIS MOMENT.