Attitude Principles

From the book Self-Help Stuff That Works

by Adam Khan:

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Chapter 3 When bad happens:
Assume it won't last long, look to see what isn't affected, and don't indulge in self-blame.
Chapter 3 When good happens:
Consider its effects permanent, see how much of your life is affected, and look to see how much you can take credit for.
Chapter 4 Become more optimistic.
Chapter 5 Talk to yourself in a confident, reassuring, positive way.
Chapter 6 Do some honest good in the world.
Chapter 7 Come up with alternative ways of interpreting an event.
Chapter 8 Change the details of your thoughts.
Chapter 9 Tell yourself you can handle it.
Chapter 10 No matter what happens, assume it's good.
Chapter 11 Keep persisting until the change you want happens.
Chapter 12 Describe upsetting situations to yourself in emotionally neutral words
Chapter 13 Control what is your responsibility.
Chapter 14 Direct your thoughts to what you appreciate and say it.
Chapter 15 If your own greed is making you discontent, quit cramming so much into your days.
Chapter 16 Direct your mind by asking yourself a good question.
Chapter 17 When something bad happens, say to yourself, That's good!
Chapter 18 Relieve negative feelings by turning your attention to purposeful activities.
Chapter 19 Let go of an idea that causes you needless stress.
Chapter 20 Find a way to turn your problems into an advantage.
Chapter 21 Interpret events in a way that helps you.
Chapter 22 Wonder about what good things might be happening.
Chapter 23 Be skeptical of your feelings of certainty.
Chapter 24 When you hit a setback in life:
Assume the problem or its consequences won't last long, see how you can prevent the same problem in the future, and don't jump to the conclusion that this setback will ruin everything.
Chapter 25 To improve your self-esteem:
Gain more ability, become more honest, do something worthwhile, and acknowledge people.
Chapter 26 Make up your mind you will succeed.

Chapter 27 Think thoughts that give you strength and make you tough. Chapter 28 Exercise regularly. Chapter 29 Act as though you already feel the way you want to feel. Chapter 30 Remind yourself you don't need much to be happy. Chapter 31 Fortify your integrity. Chapter 32 Breathe deeply, loosen tensed muscles, and say to yourself, Chapter 33 Pursue the interests that make you come alive. Chapter 34 Criticize the assumptions behind your negative feelings. Chapter 35 To turn good ideas into real change, use repetition. Chapter 36 Improve yourself, but also relax and enjoy the ride. Chapter 37 Reminisce about the best times. Chapter 38 Ask yourself, "How is this like an adventure? Chapter 39 Find a purpose that enthralls you and then actively pursue it. Chapter 40 When you're angry, argue with yourself first. Chapter 41 Clear your head and relax by going for a long walk. Chapter 42 Instead of asking why you have a problem, ask how you can get what you want. Chapter 43 To become happier:
Strengthen your integrity, get better control of your time, become more optimistic, and practice good human relations. Chapter 44 Ask yourself and keep asking, "Given my upbringing and circumstances, what Good am I especially qualified to do?

Choose only one principle to practice for now. Pick one that excites you to contemplate. Then write it on a card and carry it with you for a week or so, actively trying to practice that principle at every opportunity. Then stop practicing it consciously. It will now be a skill you'll have more available to you when you need it.

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APA Reference
Staff, H. (2008, November 27). Attitude Principles, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 13 from

Last Updated: August 14, 2014

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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