Two Choices

Michael’s Story
Author Unknown

Michael is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, would reply, “If I were any better, I would be twins!” He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Michael was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.

Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Michael and  asked him,

“I don’t get it! You can’t be a positive person all of the time.  How do   you do it?”

Michael replied,

“Each morning I wake up and say to myself, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or … you can choose to be  in a bad mood. I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or … I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or… I can point out the positive side of life.  I Choose the positive side of life.”

“Yeah, right, it’s not that easy,” I protested.

“Yes, it is,” Michael said. “Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a   choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people affect   your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It’s your choice how you live your life.”

I reflected on what Michael said. Soon thereafter, I left the Tower Industry to  start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I  made a choice about life instead of reacting to it. Several years later, I heard that Michael was involved in a serious accident,   falling some 60 feet from a communications tower. After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Michael was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back. I saw Michael about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied.

“If I were any better, I’d be twins. Wanna see my scars?”

I declined to see his wounds, but I did ask him what had gone through his mind  as the accident took place.

“The first thing that went through my mind was the well-being of my soon-to-be-born daughter,” Michael replied. “Then, as I lay on the ground, I remembered   that I had two choices: I could choose to live or … I could choose to die.   I chose to  live.”

“Weren’t you scared? Did you lose consciousness?” I asked. Michael continued,

“…the paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going   to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the ER and I saw the expressions on   the  faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read  “he’s a dead  man. I knew I needed to take action.”

“What did you do?” I asked.

“Well, there was a big burly nurse shouting questions at me,” said Michael. “She  asked if I was allergic to anything.  ‘Yes’, I replied. The doctors and  nurses stopped  working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled,  ‘Gravity.’ ”

Over their laughter, I told them,

“I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if  I am alive,  not dead.”

Michael lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing  attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully. Attitude, after all, is everything.  

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow  will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” After all  today is the  tomorrow you worried about yesterday.


Attitude determines your Altitude.




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