Can Do Attitude: What It Is & How To Develop One

can do attitude
Photo by Andres Ayrton

Simply expressed, a can-do attitude is the idea that one can handle whatever comes their way and the determination to do so. You’ve probably observed that how much you respect yourself and your ability directly reflects on how much you can actually do in life, whether you’re on the ‘can’ or ‘can’t’ side of things. We are either our best friends or our worst foes.

Here, I’ll explain what a can-do attitude is, where it comes from, and how to cultivate it.

What is a Can-do Attitude?

You most likely know at least one individual with a positive attitude. They are the folks who believe that if they put their minds to it, anything is possible. But it’s more than just wishful thinking. This belief is linked with a desire to strive towards achieving the goal or completing the activity.

A can-do attitude is a state of mind. As a result, it is frequently profoundly embedded in our consciousness. Different elements, ranging from our temperaments and upbringing to the numerous experiences we have had throughout our lives, may contribute to our being can-doers or doubters. Although the can’t-do attitude might be a strong mental habit, we can retrain ourselves into a new mental habit.

Indeed, we may learn to shift our thinking, believe in ourselves, and achieve our goals.

The great activities and ideas that come to fruition are the result of a can-do mentality. Nothing occurs without the willingness to make it happen: heroism, altruism, change, and revolution. During my volunteer years, I witnessed many great contributions to the community. “We can do it” was so contagious that none of us ever considered that those undertakings may fail.

Furthermore, if not for those blessed with a can-do mentality, technical advancement would have likely ceased with stone implements. But you don’t have to have a can-do mentality to make the world a better or more evolved place. You need it to push yourself to be the best version of yourself in any subject.

How Will a Can-do Attitude Help Me?

A can-do attitude assists you in developing resiliency and overcoming life’s problems, big or small. Being resilient is essential for navigating life’s ups and downs. When you believe in your abilities to manage any scenario, you eliminate a lot of worry, stress, and anxiety. Much of our dread stems from the belief that we cannot cope with anything, whether in the present or in the future. A positive attitude and a can-do mentality help to eliminate or reduce these doubts and worries, leaving you with a positive outlook and a strong belief in your skills to achieve your objectives and goals.

You also free yourself to realise your full potential by focusing on the positives and thinking you can accomplish whatever you’re currently working on. This type of positive thinking allows you to use your abilities to make your aspirations a reality. Believing in oneself is extremely strong!

Ways to Develop a Can-do Attitude

Depending on where you start, everyone’s road to establishing a can-do attitude will be different. Nonetheless, there are several strategies that everyone can use to change their mentality. Here are seven strategies to begin developing a can-do mindset.

#1. Develop a growth mindset

Carol Dweck, a Stanford University psychologist, proposed the concept of a development versus a fixed mindset. A fixed mindset, in its most basic form, implies that humans have unchanging characteristics. These traits determine what and how we can do in life. A fixed attitude would be thinking of yourself as stupid (or brilliant).

A growth mentality, on the other hand, is concerned with believing in the benefits of exercise and education. So you wouldn’t think your intelligence got you through school and into a rewarding career. Instead, you would credit all of your hard work and effort involved.

Why is it wrong to believe you are brilliant, talented, or good? The issue with a fixed attitude is that when it fails to produce the desired results, you feel lost. “This isn’t going to work!” The only answer is that I’m not as bright as I should be!” Do you see the connection?

People who have a growth mentality are more resilient to stress and its associated negative results (ranging from academic and professional underperformance to depression or substance abuse). In other words, they believe that if the required effort and thought are put into it, anything is possible.

#2. Recognise and learn from your mistakes.

You will make mistakes whether you like it or not. Being alive implies making mistakes in certain ways. However, are you prone to dwelling on your mistakes or beating yourself up? Or do you tend to blame others for your situation? Both practices are most likely preventing you from creating a positive attitude.

Accepting responsibility is the first step towards gaining knowledge from your life experiences. The following one is self-forgiveness. According to the findings, the ability to use past mistakes productively and learn from them leads to improved individual and group/organizational performance.

So, the next time you make a mistake, don’t hurl rocks and stones at yourself. Analyse. What occurred? What could be done differently the next time? Take time to feel sorry for yourself, and then move on.

#3. Be aware of opportunities and seize them when they present themselves.

One of the most difficult things for people who lack a can-do attitude is to notice and seize fresh possibilities and chances in life. The security of the familiar feels safe. This is entirely natural.

However, if you want to be someone who believes in themselves, goes out, and accomplishes things, you must step outside of your comfort zone. It is not required to go far beyond what you were previously comfortable with. Baby steps will also get you there.

Make it your mission to start noticing growth possibilities. When you see them, consider whether you could interact with them. What would feel safe enough while also bringing some change into your life? Do this on a regular basis, and you’ll notice a fresh viewpoint emerge.

#4. Concentrate on being consistent.

We need all the help we can get when we’re trying to change the way we think about ourselves. You want your ideas, behaviours, and emotions to be in sync in this scenario. What exactly do we mean by that?

Although some affirmation supporters claim that repeating “I can do it!” is enough to conquer the world, the truth is more complicated. An unsuccessful attempt to validate our grandeur will almost certainly result in the re-emergence of psychological anguish.

Finally, your actions should reflect your positive outlook. Make yourself respond to the next opportunity in a slightly different way than you’re used to. To be more specific, as a can-doer.

#5. Be aware of your self-talk.

We all have an inner voice that tells us different things. For many people, their voice is the toughest critic they can imagine. Those with a can-do mentality, on the other hand, hear the mantra “You got this” over and over in their heads.

A meta-analysis of approximately 70 scholarly publications verified the effectiveness of self-talk. Positive self-talk can boost our performance, alleviate depression or anxiety symptoms, and boost our confidence. Reframing your thoughts trains your mind to work for you rather than against you. What we believe is more likely to occur. This so-called Pygmalion effect frequently acts in both directions.

So, the next time you find yourself thinking, “This is too difficult,” “It’s impossible,” or “I couldn’t possibly do it,” stop. Then, generate alternative statements. Don’t aim for super-hero status right away. In other words, for affirmations to be effective, they must be credible to you. Gradually train yourself to think favourably about yourself, your abilities, and your outlook. You will begin to believe that you can do things in this manner.

#6. Unlearn the learned helplessness

‘Learned helplessness’ is a phenomenon discovered through psychological experiments. In short, dogs were placed in difficult circumstances. Every attempt to settle it and avoid an adverse stimulus would result in even more adversity. After that, even if they could escape or stop the shock, they would not even try. They realised they were powerless.

Humans learn this as well, though hopefully in a far less dramatic way. Seligman hypothesised that when confronted with traumatic circumstances over which we have little control, we may become passive, despondent, and cease learning. Such a mood has the potential to generalise and cause us to freeze in the face of any adversity. As a result, if you wish to modify your attitude towards life and obstacles, you must begin unlearning the acquired helplessness. How?

One of the most difficult things for people who lack a can-do attitude is to notice and seize fresh possibilities and chances in life. The security of the familiar feels safe. You will gather too many arguments against helplessness over time for your intellect to refute them.

#7. Modify your locus of control.

Individuals with a can-do attitude have an inner locus of control, which is one of their distinguishing characteristics. The locus of control is a psychological phrase that refers to where you place influence over your experiences. Is it an internal or external problem?

In other words, do you believe that many things are beyond your control? Or do you believe you have control over both your reactions and the circumstances in your life? According to one study, those who have an internal locus of control are healthier, more satisfied, and have greater levels of subjective well-being overall.

Try altering your centre of control if you want to become someone who believes in themselves and is eager to achieve whatever they set their mind to. How should it be done? The majority of the aforementioned suggestions will result in a progressive change in the location.

Also, keep in mind that you always have an option. Think about your alternatives, talk to people, build a list of pros and disadvantages, whatever works for you. You always have an option. Even when uncontrolled life events occur, you have the ability to choose how you will see and experience them.

What is a Can Do Attitude Examples?

A person with a positive attitude will be able to roll with the punches. Look for responses that demonstrate resilience and the ability to be proactive. For example, perhaps the candidate converted their wardrobe into a workspace or established ‘office hours’ with their children to better manage their time.

What are the Characteristics of a Can-do Attitude?

A positive attitude is inherent in an ocean-do mentality. Positive people are concerned with their success. They overcome mental obstacles, set lofty goals, and are not afraid to push themselves.

Is a Can-do Attitude a Good Thing?

A can-do attitude is a positive mindset that allows you to do anything you set your mind to. A can-do attitude implies that you approach all situations with vigour, believing that you can overcome any obstacles that may arise.

Why is a Can Do Attitude so Important?

Someone with a good working attitude will approach all of their tasks and obligations with optimism and a can-do attitude. When setbacks or problems occur, they will motivate those around them to do their best and assist in moving projects forward.


Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t yet have a can-do attitude. You’re not by yourself. Nonetheless, if you want to make a difference, think that it is possible. You too may become one of those folks who appear to have everything going for them. Simply be prepared to be on the move at all times.


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