David ByrdAbout

David Byrd

Inspiring genuine growth and achievement in leaders, David Byrd has 30 years of experience working with top business executives and their organizations. He is a master of effective leadership and works closely with leaders worldwide to maximize their leadership potential. He is the author of the The Tripping Point in Leadership.

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Why a Positive Attitude is Vital to Achievement (vol. 26)

Posted by brian | Posted in Articles, Feature Length | Posted on 09-05-2012

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Why a Positive Attitude is Vital to Achievement (vol. 26)
By David Byrd

One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a professional seeking to achieve in your field is to disregard the importance of a positive attitude. Time and time again I have heard positive attitude described as a “soft skill,” but the reality is that most of the dysfunction in business and personal achievement can be traced back to the root cause of – you guessed it – negative, ineffective thinking habits.

Before we can discuss the benefits of developing a positive attitude, we must delve into what a consistently negative attitude produces over time. I’m sure it comes as no surprise to you that we are all instinctively hard wired for negative thinking. All you have to do is watch the news to observe this phenomenon. But what is the harm in a little negative thinking – isn’t it good to have a little healthy skepticism?

Absolutely not, and here’s why:

It’s important to remember here that our natural, human instincts are concerned only with safety and comfort, and in order to keep you safe, your established habit of thinking must be maintained, and that is why the negative-thinking habit of pessimism is so common. When you think negatively, your brain instinctively interprets that pessimism as a protective mechanism of security, and your habit of pessimism is reinforced constantly. However, the habitual perspective of pessimism will eventually become a comfortable thinking habit, and that leads to unproductive habits of thought.

In other words, you develop negative attitudes. Upon these ineffective thinking habits you begin to build “comfort zones” for yourself that impede your own growth. When you are working toward achievement, the last thing you want to do is stunt your growth, but that is exactly what negative thinking habits and negative attitudes produce. Managing a positive, effective attitude is difficult because it is not your natural instinct, but you must develop the capacity to manage a positive attitude if you want to achieve.

Without question, the long-term benefits of maintaining a positive attitude are far more desirable than the long-term effects of a negative attitude. While the result of a consistently negative attitude is lack of growth, the long-term result of a consistent, positive attitude is fulfillment and achievement. A positive attitude fosters creativity, manages fear, has an expectation for success, and nurtures faith.

How do I start developing a positive attitude?

Manage your thought life

Every thought you entertain during the day is either positive or negative. There really is no in-between or neutral thought. Every moment of your thinking pattern during the day either serves your growth or serves your stagnation, so it imperative that you steer your thinking pattern toward positive thought. Growth is absolutely essential to achievement.

Many people describe their attitude as neutral – neither positive nor negative. However, since everything in nature is either growing or decaying, there can be no neutral positions. You and your thoughts are alive and dynamic. The thinking patterns that determine your attitudes either work to bring about your growth or work to bring about your decline.
Unleash your creativity

A positive attitude fosters creativity. Creativity cannot exist in negative thought. For example, it is impossible to discover a creative solution by thinking about all the impossibilities. Your mind cannot entertain creativity and negative thought at the same time.

To find a creative solution, you must think in terms of the possibilities rather than the impossibilities. When you are met with a problem, allow yourself to brainstorm freely without any of the usual negative filters. You might be surprised by what is produced by a mind that is unencumbered by the negative…the possibilities are endless! The fastest way to promote achievement is to believe it to be possible. Again, that requires the management of a consistent, positive attitude.

Control your fears

Everyone is challenged by the emotion of fear. Fear is a natural, human emotion that instinctively causes us to respond with a defensive reflex to any perceived threat. If left unmanaged, your attitudes will be controlled by the emotion of fear.

For example, if you set a goal that requires you to do new things, these new activities will seem uncomfortable at first. That is normal, but you may instinctively respond with fearful feelings because the new activities are uncomfortable. You psychologically interpret those fearful feelings as “risks” or “dangers,” while in fact these new activities may not be dangerous at all … but you will naturally respond with negative feelings.

You cannot possibly expect to grow and not confront new activities, skills, and responsibilities. If you allow your natural responses of fear to direct your thinking, you will personally sabotage your opportunities for achievement by choosing to quit or not to act. Most of the people who fail to achieve did not fail at all. They simply allowed fear to control their thinking and quit. The fear of risk and the unknown were stronger than their desire to achieve.

Armed with a new level of awareness of how and why negative attitudes are instinctive, you now understand why a positive attitude development program is vital to your growth, success, and achievement. You must develop a positive, productive attitude. It will never happen naturally, but just because it is not natural does NOT mean you cannot do it!

Inspiring genuine growth and achievement in leaders, David Byrd has 30 years of experience working with top business executives and their organizations. He is a master of effective leadership and works closely with leaders worldwide to maximize their leadership potential. For more information about The Next-Level Achievement System or David’s book, Achievement – A Proven System For Next Level Growth, visit http://www.authorsup.com/David-Byrd.

#3 — Break Out of Your Negative Past Conditioning By Exercising Your Power of Choice

Posted by brian | Posted in Articles | Posted on 08-22-2012

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I talk with people everyday who seem to be trapped in self-fulfilling prophecy of their own design. They experience:



indecisiveness, and


Our past conditioning sometimes leads us in undesirable directions. We can change that by exercising our power of choice. We have the freedom to choose our responses to life.

Our thoughts are simply choices that design our futures, and we are 100% in control of those thoughts.

Thoughts lead to habits, and habits lead to behaviors.
To develop emotional courage, you must break out of your current conditioning by consciously choosing to act courageously.

It is within every person’s power to choose!

Step #2 — Develop a Healthy Attitude Toward Mistakes, Failures, and Negative Outcomes

Posted by brian | Posted in Articles | Posted on 08-15-2012

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You will spend much of your life dealing with negative outcomes. Negative outcomes, mistakes, and failures often throw the average person for a loop.

However, in the real world of life, it is common to make mistakes and actually fail, and there will always be negative circumstances over which you may not have any control.

The reality is any of us can fail.

I find it interesting that most very successful people have failed more than the average person.

Failing at something is a common event, but seeing yourself as a failure comes from your past conditioning of fear and insecurity. Your circumstances never define who you are … your actions do.

Responding to life with habitual, critical, and pessimistic attitudes is a reflection of your internal fears. You truly are what you believe yourself to be. Your behaviors and actions demonstrate your beliefs.

If you are filled with:


worry, and

doubt …

your behaviors demonstrate that!

If you are:

goal-directed and

filled with optimism and

faith …

your behaviors demonstrate that as well!

Behaviors demonstrate your true beliefs about yourself and others.

To develop emotional courage, you must start with a healthy attitude toward all life events, the good and the bad.

The smallest beginnings are better than the greatest intentions, so get started by writing a statement describing how you will positively respond to the next negative outcome.
You cannot control all the circumstances of life, but you must control your responses to those circumstances.

Emotional courage to the effective leader is a predetermined, productive mindset toward negative events and circumstances.

3 Quick Tips for Building Confidence to Achieve (vol. 25)

Posted by brian | Posted in Articles, Feature Length | Posted on 08-08-2012

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3 Quick Tips for Building Confidence to Achieve (vol. 25)
By David Byrd

In your achievement journey, you have no doubt looked to successful role models for guidance. How did they do it? What is their strategy? There may not be one “secret to success” that they all share, but I can guarantee that there is one trait that they all have in common; that trait is confidence.

Confidence is one of the foundational elements in developing the power of attraction, so it is no surprise that confidence is the most attractive impression you can make. Some people seem to be born brimming with confidence while others struggle with it. If the latter better describes you, don’t worry – confidence can be developed.

How do you start building confidence?

#1 – Go outside your comfort zone and develop a new skill

Confidence is developed from the experience of successful attempts. I’m going to warn you now – the experience is usually uncomfortable. Everything within us wants to revert back to our comfort zone where everything feels safe. That feeling of security is an illusion; you will not build confidence and grow until you stretch yourself to the point where you are uncomfortable.

You may have to endure a few failures before you experience the thrill of success. Don’t despair. On October 21, 1879, after thirteen months of repeated failures, Thomas Edison finally succeeded in finding an electric light bulb filament that worked. He simply would not give up until he experienced a successful attempt. The fact is, you learn from both mistakes and successes, but you develop confidence from the experience of successful attempts. You try something, it works, and you have more confidence for the next attempt.

#2 – Make the choice of accountability

If experiencing a successful attempt is the “how” of confidence-building, then accountability is the “where.” There is no better place to experience successful attempts than in the proving ground of accountability. When you make a commitment to do what you say you are going to do and report on that to an outside partner on a weekly basis, you will begin to notice that you are doing things that you never thought possible.

With time, you begin to understand that you possess an unlimited amount of untapped potential that you may not have discovered on your own. Most of us need the outside perspective of accountability to grow. We simply cannot view ourselves subjectively and truly evaluate our potential if we are relying on ourselves. Accountability to a mentor that you trust will push you past your self-imposed limitations and into a lifestyle of achievement and growth, which is what you want!

#3 – Look the part

I know this seems shallow, but I have learned that it is important to know how other people see you and to evaluate their impressions. I read a book back in the mid-seventies entitled Dress for Success. One of the most important lessons I learned from that book was how important the little things are to other people.

Some people argue that it shouldn’t matter how they look and that who they are is more important. I agree, but the effective leader understands that good impressions enhance his or her favorable impressions. We live in a physical environment, and we attract or repel by the impressions we give. And chances are if you are dressing in a manner that inspires confidence and respect, that feeling will translate into genuine confidence over time.

You can become the confident leader that you aspire to be. It just takes hard work, determination, and a great deal of perseverance. But what goal worth achieving doesn’t? When you take the time to develop confidence, there will be a huge return on your investment. You become aware that no matter how challenging the future may be, you have the untapped potential to successfully deal with it. And that is something worth fighting for.

Inspiring genuine growth and achievement in leaders, David Byrd has 30 years of experience working with top business executives and their organizations. He is a master of effective leadership and works closely with leaders worldwide to maximize their leadership potential. For more information about The Next-Level Achievement System or David’s book, Achievement – A Proven System For Next Level Growth, visit http://www.authorsup.com/David-Byrd.

Steps to Emotional Courage: #1 — Believe In Your Potential

Posted by brian | Posted in Articles | Posted on 08-01-2012

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The first step to emotional courage is this: #1 — Believe In Your Potential

It is difficult to be courageous when you do not believe in yourself. Your current capacities and abilities may not be sufficient to address your current circumstance or situation, but you have the untapped potential to handle any circumstance or situation.

You simply have to take positive action to develop that potential. The alternative is to settle into a comfort zone of negative belief.

Symptoms of negative beliefs include:



indecisiveness, and


An outside-in perspective can help here. People around you see potential in you that you may not see.

Make a list of your top five personal strengths, starting with the greatest strength.

Then find a trusted friend or mentor to review your list and confirm or add to it.

As an effective leader, you should build on your strengths rather than focus on your weaknesses. The degree of your success and achievement in life is determined by how well you develop your potential and use your strengths.

Your weaknesses:

simply become dangers to be avoided!