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Updated: Sep 27, 2018

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.” John C. Maxwell

Two people are caught in a sudden downpour. One person splashes around and takes great joy in the rain. The other mutters how she hates rain and how it makes her miserable. The circumstance of the sudden rain is the same for both people, it is their attitude which is the dramatic separator.

Attitude is a French word from 1660 which was used to describe someone’s state of mind or tendency of mood. They used attitude to refer to physical posture which implied a person’s mental state.  Today on the court or in the classroom, attitude is an important indication of the receptivity toward learning and can indicate virtues such as gratitude.

At NBC Camps, we teach attitude is king because all the other disciplines follow. If a player’s behavior is following along with the coach but their attitude is unreceptive, bitter or ungrateful, no matter how fantastic the lesson, how amazing the coach, the athlete cannot learn.


Attitude influences emotion.  Your attitude is a roadmap for your emotions and feelings about your circumstances. It provides a game plan for the body to respond. A person who has intentionally decided to have a great attitude, will face difficulty much differently than a person who has no plan.  Left on our own, we can become very moody and a slave to our feelings. If something good happens we feel good, if something bad happens we are in misery. The wisest people learn that not all difficulty is bad, but it is our attitude which can turn something which appears “bad” into something of great value.

Attitude is created through habit.  Some people have developed an ungrateful attitude so that no matter where they are or what they go through, they are never thankful. At Disneyland, they complain, pout, or whine. On the other hand, some people have developed an attitude of gratitude so that even in major difficulties they find ways to live with joy and give joy to others.

Attitude determines quality. An athlete may go through the motions of the practice but if he or she has a negative attitude toward the practice, the efforts are wasted. A resistance to learn comes from negative attitude. On the other hand, a great attitude multiplies the receptivity of what the mind, heart and body are learning which can lead to transformation.

Attitude influences coaches and teachers. Just like the quote by John C. Maxwell, “People hear our words but feel our attitude.” Becoming wise about what attitude people feel from us is very important.  Some athletes project an attitude that unskilled teachers and coaches can incorrectly assess as arrogant, lazy or stand-offish. We have seen players who are shy project a negative attitude when in actuality they are internally wrestling with self-doubt and timidity. Become emotionally intelligent about the attitude people feel from you.  Work to project an attitude of gratitude and self-confidence with humility. This attitude will help you be the leader on and off the court you desire to be. 

Attitude in the small tasks. You prepare to excel at the big moments of life by cultivating strong life habits in the small tasks.  Poor attitude while emptying the dishwasher may seem small but it actually is quite big. Your attitude in the small daily tasks are building the type of person you will be.  Change your attitude on the small tasks and you will find you have the type of character you need when it matters most.

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