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The Problem With a 'Positive Attitude'

Have you ever had a friend who understood you even better than you did yourself? Years ago, I was lamenting to my friend Ginna about someone I adored yet whom I also found sort of insufferably cheery. Ginna smiled and shot back with, "Cut the sugar!" Yes. Could we get that stitched on a pillow?

"What's wrong with being cheery?"

Not a thing. Like you, I love being around people who are happy, excited, fulfilled, and otherwise lit up. They light up those around them. But as you may have noticed—at school, at home, and let's not get started on the workplace—a strength overused is a weakness.

So it is with a positive attitude. We can get so caught up in having one that we gloss over other traits that are equally important, if not more so; for example:

  • A healthy sense of urgency
  • Good judgment
  • Self-discipline
  • The courage to make tough decisions—and stand by them
  • The ability to set limits with ourselves and those around us
  • Integrity in our work
  • Empathy—understanding and appreciating how we affect others
Simply put, the solution to a sticky-sweet disposition is to balance it with a brain, a heart, and a backbone. Common sense? Probably. Yet it's up to us to make it common practice.

P.S. Here's more FREE inspiration for your fridge. I invite you to download the free list What Self-Esteem Makes Possible from my book Ultimate Reminders® for Everyday Life. Both the list and the book are suitable for precocious middle schoolers, savvy grandparents, and all of us in between. Thanks for helping me spread the word!

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Gina DeLapa is America's Ultimate Reminders® Coach, a sought-after speaker, and the proud creator of the Ultimate Reminders® book series. Her wise and witty reminders ("Beware the organization whose response to a burning building is to form a committee") will make you laugh, stir your soul, and inspire your best. If you're not already getting her free Monday-Morning Pep Talk, be sure to sign up now at