Posted on 04.23.2018

A Good Attitude

When you walk into a fast food shop that employs teenagers and twenty-somethings, you can pick the winners from the losers fairly easily.

There’s the sullen individual who slow walks throughout their shift with one eye on the clock and their head in the clouds, and you know right away that working behind a fast food counter or some other menial position will not just be a starter job for them, but a permanent occupation, because neither their attitude nor their ambition would motivate anyone to give them a position of responsibility.

Then there’s the kid who greets you with a smile, takes your order and hustles around the counter taking care of business with a sense of urgency, taking orders, delivering food, answering questions and operating the cash register, making every move count and every word courteous.

So many times, I’ve looked at such a kid and thought, if I was opening a business that needed this kind of help, I would approach him or her and offer them more money than they are making here, because that is the kind of employee I would want to represent my business to the public.

No matter how big the company, no matter how slick the advertising or how impressive the building, it all comes down to people, how your customers are treated and if they feel their patronage is appreciated.

I remember after a long and tiring flight to Alaska, we approached a car rental counter to find it manned by several lackadaisical young ladies who seemed totally out of touch with the business of renting cars and one girl was more concerned with talking to her boyfriend on the phone than she was in taking care of the tired customers who supplied the money to pay her salary.

It was a long and harrowing experience and I made it a priority never to use that rental firm again.

I know about hard work, in the farm fields, in the log woods, in factories and plants, and decided early on, before I took on the responsibility of marriage and children, that there was something better out there for me.

And when I got the chance to stand on a stage and play my music for people, I gave it all I had and learned the hard way that if you’re not up to putting the time and energy into regular rehearsals, learning new material and entertaining the paying customers every time your foot touches the stage, there’s another joint down the street where a bunch of kids who do take it seriously will eventually run you out of town.

I sometimes wonder how some of the young people in the colleges with comfort zones and safe areas will fare when they actually have to meet the grinding competition of the workplace, where there are no crisis counselors and you’re not allowed to take a comfort dog to work with you.

I firmly believe that the American dream is still alive and that those who are willing can achieve it, for those who realize that you can’t just sit under the tree and wait for the fruit to fall into your lap, you’ve got to shake the tree and make it fall.

It’s alive for those who are willing to accept the responsibility to get the job done, no matter how early you have to get there or how late you have to stay.

The highest rewards always go to those who can be handed the toughest assignments because the powers that be known that it will be accomplished, efficiently and with excellence.

It all comes down to attitude, the half full or half empty glass, the tenacity to be able to put adversity behind you and the concentration to keep your eye on the destination until you get there, no matter the hills and valleys or the rocks in the road.

I didn’t come up this phrase, but I have tried to live by it for decades.

“I’m going to get what I want out of life, even if I have to work twice as hard as anybody else has ever worked.”

A good attitude, the starting place on the path to seeing dreams come true.

Try it, it works.

What do you think?

Pray for our troops, our police and the peace of Jerusalem.

God Bless America

— Charlie Daniels

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