The Nature of Attitude

Attitude © Erik Back 2012

I’m working on an ebook titled “6 Powerful Mechanisms Behind Personal Change”. This post is a part of the chapter about positive attitude. I will show you what attitude is and how you can use it to be proactive.

The Nature of Attitude

Daniel D. Droba claims he was the first to define the attitude concept and he did so in his article The Nature of Attitude from 1933.

Droba based his study on 55 books on sociology and psychology and he concluded that attitude is a state of preparation to action.

“Attitude is a state of preparation to action”

Carl Jung’s definition of attitude

I’m surprised that Droba only used American sources and studies because the attitude concept has a central role in Carl Jung’s Psychological Types published in 1923.

Jung’s work is used today in personality tests and development of organisations.

In his work “Psychological Types” (pp. 526-30) Jung gave his definition of attitude:

“Attitude is a readiness of the psyche to act or react in a certain direction.”

Jung places great emphasis on the attitude concept because it is a powerful mechanism that is based on experience:

“To have a certain attitude means to be ready for something definite […] having an attitude is synonymous with an a priori direction towards a definite thing.”

Jung believes that we have both a conscious and an unconscious attitude. I you want to act in a certain direction you have to be conscious about it; for that you need attitude.

“Active apperception is impossible without an attitude.”

Jung has identified certain types of attitudes that are based on habits.

“When a function habitually predominates, a typical attitude is thereby produced.”

This means, that habits can develop both consciously and unconsciously; these habits will produce some kind of attitude.

If you want to change something you need the right attitude to do so. That is why you can combine habits and attitudes and thereby create personal change.


Experience → Attitude → Action

It’s raining. Rain is wet and cold. → Rain is bad → Cancel date

Habits → Attitude → Action

Bad habit → Negative attitude → Negative projection to other people

Unhealthy diet → feeling of guilt → healthy people are patronising

You can use this mechanism to create change. Changing a habit is difficult and it takes time, but you can choose to adopt a certain attitude, e.g. a positive attitude, and thereby change your action.

Another type of action will lead to a new experience. That new experience is your resource to the attitude you desire.

Your attitude is not predetermined. You can choose to take responsibility for your actions and adopt an attitude that will help you to personal change. This is being proactive.

Make your choice:

I choose to be reactive and let my bad habits control my life and actions I choose to be proactive and take charge of my life and actions

Is it that simple? – Yes, it is that simple! The difficult part is to make the decision about being reactive or proactive. If you chose to be reactive then you don’t have to read anymore – just carry on with your life as usual.

Did you choose to be proactive? What are you going to do to be proactive?

Maybe you are already in charge of your personal development, please share how you did in the comments.

My New Strategy

Books © by shutterhacks

I have written a 264-page book about change and development. This book is in Danish and still unpublished even though it is ready for printing. I have done a major research in change and development where I keep focus on the good habits of a stable foundation. It would only be natural for me to continue this focus on this blog. That is why I am going to change the categories and find a narrow focus that can assist you in your personal development and life improvement.

The future of Intelligentsia will carry keywords like:

  • Habits
  • Change
  • Development
  • Stability
  • Foundation

My vision is to create a blog that will help you to find a good path in life. The means that I will use to get there are good habits and a stable foundation.

My educational background is in strategy and management supplemented by philosophy. Although I have great insight in other disciplines I am going to focus on a few keywords that I will approach from the angle of a strategist and manager, because that is what I am good at. Using philosophy I can develop strategies that you can benefit from and I can teach you how to manage these strategies to optimise your life.

The point of this post is that to get success you have to focus on what you are good at. Do not focus on everything that seems interesting because that will keep you floating around without a specific goal. I have started defining my goal and figuring out what you can expect from my writings in the future.

  • I am good at making strategies!
  • I am a fantastic manager!
  • I have an excellent mind!

These are my resources that I will use on this blog; I will use strategy, management and philosophy to give you some of the best tools on the web to assist you in your personal development.

Your Personality 3: Astrology

astrology © by Frances Lane

This topic is both interesting and provoking; a lot of people do not believe in the predictions of astrology and they would say it is very frivolous. The science of astronomy originates from astrology and today astrology is considered a pseudoscience. But I think that astronomy can be very helpful in your personal development if you use it properly.

My first two posts in this series presented the MBTI and Socionics that were both based on Carl Jung’s theories about psychological types. The question is: How did Jung come up with this idea? Where did he get the idea that people can be described in specific types? What did he base his research on? Well, you have probably guessed the answer; Jung’s theories were based on his research in astrology.

Jung kept an open mind to everything and especially to the unexplained and that is all you need to do to take good advantage of astrology in your personal development. I do not believe that astrology can predict the future, but I do believe that we can use astrology to describe our world and to realise who we are and where we are. Astrology can assist you on your path to your dreams and goals because it will make you realise what resources you possess and what potentials you have inside you.

In magazines you can read your horoscope every day. These horoscopes are quite superficial and only based on you birth sign. If you want to use astrology in your personal development I recommend that you pay a professional astrologer to make you a birth chart to base the analysis on. You will be amazed what you can derive from such a birth chart. Even if you do not believe in astrology there are still a lot of things you can use it for.

There are tons of astrology sites on the Internet; just search Google and you will find free birth charts for everything. I have found a site that you can start out with – just click here. This site offers a free personal profile that covers vitality, habits, self-identity, mentality, capacity for love and driving force.

How To Build Your Self-Esteem: Stop Comparing

You are a unique person; there is no one else in the universe that can be you better than you are. You are the only one who knows how to be you. You are an expert in the field of being you and there is no way anyone can do it better than you can!

Why would you want to be like someone else? That ‘someone else’ is also the best at being that specific ‘someone else’. You will never in a lifetime get close at being that person – and why would you? You have been blessed with something unique and priceless: Your own life!

You have your own life and only you know how to master that life. Whatever you do, you do it in a way that only you can do; that is called personality and your personality defines you. If you did not do things the way you do, then you would not be you.

You have to stop comparing yourself to other people and start focusing on yourself. When you compare yourself to other people and feel inferior then you create low self-esteem. Imagine if you were the only one in the world – then there was no one that was better than you at anything. If you ran 100 meters you would possess the world record. If you spoke ten words of Spanish you would be the best at it. You would be the best driver; the best journalist; the best cook; the best – at everything possible!

If you were alone in the world you would choose your own path and set your own standards and you would not care about other people. In a way you are alone in the world; in your world. Every person has his own worldview. My world does not look like yours and your world does not look like mine. How I excel in my world is not relevant to you. What is relevant to you is how you get from a to b on your life path in your world.

Task no. 10: Next time you feel inferior then find out what it is you really want and ask yourself what you can do to get it and put it on your mental map.

5 Ways To Get Out If Depressed

Depressed in Paris.... © by Toni Birrer

My back hurts and I just feel like lying down. The doctor says the pain is due to inactiveness and tells me exercise. But I cannot exercise because my back hurts and the only way to heal my back is to exercise… “ – I have heard this story I million times and I really do understand how hard it is to do one thing when every bone in your body want to do something else.

That is how depression is. We can all feel depressed now and then, it is like catching a cold that stays for a while and then gets better again. Some people are more depressed than other and the only thing you want to do is to isolate yourself and be alone and pity yourself and be negative about everything – the world really sucks when you are depressed! When you feel depressed all people are idiots that should go away and disappear.

But just like my introductory story about back pain that is cured by exercise, depression is best cured by positive experiences with other people. Here is what you can do:

  1. Take a walk! You do not need a purpose, just force your feet into their shoes and take a walk in the city. You will start feeling better almost immediately.
  2. Ask a friend out. Call someone – anyone – and meet for a cup of coffee at a café.
  3. Exercise. Go to the fitness centre or public swimming pool. Choose an activity where there will be other people.
  4. Seek crowds. If you see a crowd then go there and investigate.
  5. Say hello. Decide to greet a stranger. Say hello and smile to he first person you meet or maybe a facer or a shop assistant.

Believe me, you will feel better instantly!