The Difference Between Positive and Negative Attitude

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Background

What is the difference between positive and negative attitude? We use these terms quite often to describe another person. We may describe someone as having a positive attitude or a negative attitude. What we are actually doing is using these terms to describe a set of behaviours that another is demonstrating.

In the same way that we use these terms to describe other people, other people will use the same terms to describe the behaviour that we are demonstrating. If we want people to describe us as having a positive attitude, we need to demonstrate the right behaviours. Our behaviour will distinguish the difference between positive and negative attitude.

The Difference Between Positive and Negative Attitude - What is Attitude?

Again, we assume that attitude is the behaviour that people demonstrate. In reality, the behaviour that people demonstrate is a result of their attitude.

In its simplest form, attitude is nothing more than a decision that we make on how we respond to what is going on around us. The challenge is, on most occasions, this decision is an unconscious one. The difference between positive and negative attitudes is the decision that someone has made on how they will respond to a situation they are facing.

In its simplest form, attitude is nothing more than a decision that we make on how we respond to what is going on around us. The challenge is, on most occasions, this decision is an unconscious one. Click To Tweet

Positive People Vs Negative People

The difference between positive people and negative people can be summed up by their attitude. However, the difference we see is both in their behaviour and their actions. The difference can be described as negative reaction vs positive action.

Negative reaction - when someone chooses to respond negatively to a situation, they tend to look back on the problem and become so focused on the problem that they can't move any further forward.

Positive action - when someone chooses to respond positively to a situation, they tend to move into action mode or solution mode. They recognise they can't change the past and therefore the problem, but they can influence what happens next.

Personal Impact Training Course - Revolution Learning and Development

Creating a Positive Attitude

To have a positive attitude, we must first recognise what makes us negative. We need to recognise that things coming toward us will have an impact on us. And it's at this point that we need to make a conscious decision about how to respond.

Imagine you are at a train station and your train is delayed or cancelled. Do you vent your frustration at the departure boards or a member of staff from the train company? Do you stand and shake your head and quietly curse and tell yourself how bad things are? This is a negative reaction. Or, do you recognise quickly you can't make the train come any quicker and neither can anyone else in the station, so you jump into action, trying to find an alternative way to get home. Do you call those that are expecting you to let them know what is happening and about your delay? This is positive action.

When it comes to the difference between a positive and a negative attitude, it's the decision that we make when the situation unfolds that will lead to us feeling and therefore acting positively or negatively.

A good way to understand this is to look at a model called Betaris box:

The difference between positive attitude and negative attitude - Betaris Box
The model shows that our attitude affects our behaviour and our behaviour can also affect others people attitudes. The model can also start from the bottom suggesting that others negative attitude and behaviour call influence us to become negative too. Others attitudes and behaviour can also represent a situation.

We need to be able to put a block between others behaviour and our attitude. This block represents doing something conscious (for example, taking a deep breath) to remind you to choose your response. This is a great way to remind ourselves to choose positive action over negative reaction.

The difference between positive and negative attitude is all in that block and that conscious decision that you make.

See our article on the Betari Box Model for a more detailed overview.

Further Learning

If you wish to find out more about the difference between positive and negative attitude, you may find a personal impact training course will help. Take a look at Personal Impact Training from our training partner Revolution Learning and Development Ltd.

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