You either ride life or it rides you. Your mental attitude determines who is “rider” and who is “horse.” No one could ride a horse if the horse discovered its real strength. The same thing is true for people.
Horses are massive, gentle creatures who are by far larger and stronger than the men and women who handle them, yet they docilely obey the commands they are given. It does not seem logical that a large, powerful animal would allow itself to be mastered by a human being, yet we have been able to use our intelligence to dominate the animal kingdom.
There is no compromise or negotiation when it comes to who will run your life. Either you take charge and live a productive life of your choosing or you allow yourself to be ruled by circumstances. But there will inevitably be setbacks. In the old West, a cowboy expression went, “There never was a horse that couldn’t be rode, and there never was a rider that couldn’t be throwed.” Like everyone else, you will have days when everything goes right and you are on top of the world. Relish those days, enjoy them, and remember them. Recall the euphoria that accompanied them when you need an extra measure of positive thinking to get back in the saddle after you’ve experienced an embarrassing and painful fall.
You can use these same forces to allow the positive side of yourself to dominate the negative. A Positive Mental Attitude allows you to tap the source of great power that resides within you, enabling you to accomplish things you never before believed were possible.
For years, athletes attempted to run a mile in four minutes but it seemed to be a barrier that no one could overcome. Then on May 6, 1954, a British runner named Roger Gilbert Bannister ran a mile in 3:59.4 minutes to establish a world record. Soon afterward, other runners broke Bannister’s record. Too often, we accept conventional wisdom as fact. Make sure you set your goals high enough. Don’t settle for less because of limitations you place upon yourself. Most of us never really reach the level of achievement of which we are capable because we don’t challenge ourselves to do so. Perhaps Robert Browning said it
best: “A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, / Or what’s a heaven for?”
It you haven’t the willpower to keep your physical body in repair, you also lack the power of will to maintain a positive mental attitude in other important circumstances that control your life. When you take charge of your fate and determine that you will live positively in every aspect of your life — physical and mental — you will receive an extra benefit. Positive physical conditioning will reinforce your Positive Mental Attitude, and your positive attitude will help you stay in better physical condition.
Remember, your mental limitations are of your own making.