Our Attitude & the Common Cold

Attitudes are similar to the common cold. Like colds, attitudes can be contagious. Someone will say something negative, then someone else will voice similar feelings, then another and another.

Attitudes also spread from home to work and vice versa. Have you heard of someone “waking up on the wrong side of the bed”? They started the day grouchy at home and brought it with them to work. Attitudes can affect a lot of people. One bad attitude has the potential to spoil a whole department.

As with a cold, I have to be careful about what kind of attitude I’m spreading. If attitudes are contagious, I have to ask myself, “What am I spreading around? Am I spreading a bad attitude to someone whose ‘immune system’ might not be as developed as mine, such as a new employee, a transfer to a new department, a sick patient or a worried family member?”

Here are three preventive measures we can all take to help stop the spread of bad attitudes:

  1. Wash regularly — In the same way that hand washing can stop the spread of germs, washing ourselves of bad attitudes can do the same thing. We wash bad attitudes away by venting to someone we trust. Some people find the hospital chaplains a good place to start, while others may have a trusted colleague who will listen.
  2. Drink plenty of fluids — Just as water dilutes a virus, so positive material dilutes bad attitudes. Read the Bible or other spiritual material on a regular basis to be sure that you have more positive flowing in than negative.
  3. Get enough rest — Tiredness affects our attitudes, so a good prescription for attitude adjustment is to get some rest.

Let’s make our lives a bad-attitude-free zone.

by Chaplain Bill Werner

October 26, 2006