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“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

-Thomas Jefferson

You’ve heard the phrase before, often used to describe our attitudes in a work environment. For me, having a can-do attitude is important not only in a work setting, but in life.

So what exactly does it mean to have a can-do attitude?

Let’s break it down letter by letter.


Courage, as Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “Is not the absent of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.”

Roosevelt SW Article

Courage is the ability to do something that frightens you. It’s the strength in the face of pain or grief. It’s in the family of bravery, valor, audacity, boldness, grit, and heroism.

Everyone can access courage. Some channel it easier than others, but at the end of the day it’s accessible to everyone.

Being courageous is the first letter.


Pablo Picasso said, “Action is the foundational key to all success.”

Picasso SW Article

Acting is simply the process of doing something. When you couple courage with action, you have the beginning stages of your can-do attitude.

Acting and not standing idle is the second letter.


Harnessing the power of now is something Eckhart Tolle has taught millions. It’s not living in the past, or worrying about the future, it’s harnessing the moment at hand.

Living in the present places you in the best mental place to seize opportunities.

Harnessing the power of now is the third letter.


The definition of despite is acting without being affected by something. Essentially you cast concern aside. You may have reason to not act, but you do it anyway.

Despite is the fourth letter.


Bringing it all together, the definition of odds are the chances or likelihood of something happening or being the case.

There are odds all around us and they feed our belief.

Being able to courageously act in the face of odds, especially when they’re stacked against us, well, that’s truly impressive.

Casting the odds aside is the fifth letter.

Can-Do Attitude SW Article

Final thoughts

So there you have it, your new definition of what it means to have a can-do attitude. Courageously acting now despite odds.

Keep it in mind and hold yourself to a can-do attitude each day.

As always thanks for taking the time to read!