Your Mentality is Your Reality

I just got the news: I was going to be alone.

Whoa - hold up, Lydia, that’s too dramatic.

Ok ok - you’re right, reader. Allow me to clarify.

You see, many moons ago, I was a manager at my local Converse retail store. It was 7am on a Saturday, I was preparing to open the store when the store received a phone call.

The voice on the other end communicated to me that I was stuck closing the store because the closing manager had called out of work.

“Is anyone else available to cover the closing manager’s shift? I’m opening the store and I’d really prefer to not work 12 hours straight without a lunch break.”

Nope. No one else was available.

“Great,” I lamented.

I wasn't going to be able to take a lunch break.

I was going to have to run a busy store.

For 12 hours.

On the busiest day of the week.

As the only manager on duty.

“I’m exhausted already,” I said while my eyes rolled into the back of my head.

"Ugh. This sucks." Pity party mode engaged.

But then I realized something: I couldn't change the fact that I had to work 12 hours alone. BUT I could change my attitude about the whole ordeal.

As I saw it, I had two options: 1) work 12 hours begrudgingly, or 2) work 12 hours with a positive attitude.

I chose the latter, because why not.

“I’ll work this shift and be happy about it, dammit.”

So that day I worked 12 hours straight focusing every bit of my energy into making the day of every single customer I interacted with, and every single associate that was on shift that day. I greeted every person that I could, and if I couldn’t service a customer I encouraged my teammates to step in for me.

Finally, It was 10 pm. I drove home, I slept for 6 hours, and I drove back in to work the next morning at 7 am.

I logged into the computer to check our store's surveys, as managers are supposed to every morning.

Our customers could fill out surveys based on the customer service they received on their most recent visit to the store. Our goal was a 2% response rate - we usually maintained that. The morning of the previous day (the 12-hour workday) it was sitting below 2%.

I couldn't believe what I saw… 8%.

Our response rate was EIGHT. PERCENT

It turns out I had been so driven to have a good day, to motivate my staff, and to make my customer's day that a hefty amount of people had filled out the surveys, giving us outstanding scores. They gave their in-store experience glowing ratings, mentioned me by name, and mentioned other staff impacted their days in wonderful ways.

I was blown away that my energy shift changed the way I experienced that day, changed the way my co-workers experienced their shift, and changed the experience of customers coming into my store. 

It all started with a mentality shift.

If you feel like you're in a crappy situation, just take charge.

Take the bull by the horns and turn it around into something awesome.

Be awesome, you can do it.

Your mentality is your reality. Admittedly, that isn't mine. It's from ModSun's book Did I Ever Wake Up.

Change your mind, change your life (and others'!)

Lydia Weibel