What does the car business mean to you? Stop and think about how long you’ve been doing the same thing, day in and day out. Do you enjoy it? Are you grateful? Do you appreciate what you have? Do you feel good about yourself every day when you leave the store?

I have been working in auto retail since 2003, and I know this business is like the elevator business: It has its up and downs. Currently, there is a lot of concern out there about things we can’t control. I want to address one thing we can all control: the way we behave and react to the day. Because you can’t control what’s on TV or online, but you certainly can limit how much of that you allow to rent space in your head.

Patience Pays
When you walk into your store each day, are you in a coma? You should be aware, alert, alive and ready to do business. Do you smile at the receptionist and your fellow employees as you walk by toward your desk or office? Or do you look past them or down at your shoes while you hurry past?

Hey, everyone has issues they are working through. So try to be understanding and patient — even when they aren’t. By doing this, you realize you get to decide how you are going to react to the day. So what attitude are you going to project when the next customer enters your office? Will you be someone who changes the course of someone else’s day for the better, or will you be the reason someone else chooses to have a rotten day?

We are all connected. And being in sales, we should all strive to be connectors of people. That means talking to as many people each day as we can, and realizing that everyone has challenges they are facing. Try to listen more and spend time asking people you work with about their lives.

It is amazing how much you can impact the culture of your dealership by simply choosing to smile and having a positive mental outlook. That all falls in line with being a good leader and having the right mindset. Good leaders listen. They observe. And they continue learning and growing.

Get Self-Motivated
I like to read various motivational books and watch videos to keep my mind right and me on track daily. One of the best I have encountered is Jim Rohn. He was an incredible man with a terrific story. One of the things he always said that resonated with me was having a “silent seminar.” I use three-inch by five-inch cards and sticky notes to have these seminars all day long. I write down phrases and quotes from various mentors in my life and I read them all the time.

As Rohn once said, “The key to your better future is you.”

Handling the negativity in life is all in the approach. If our approach is negative, that is all we’ll attract. We attract who we are, not what we want. So we must get ourselves in the right frame of mind to live in the present moment. I have to choose to approach my day with enthusiasm and excitement. Those two things can then be transferred to what we do every day and will get us a “Yes” more often, which is why we are all here in the first place, right?

Hey, the world has enough hard things in it. So try to be the best part of someone’s day. Try to make someone smile. I bet you won’t have any competition. So when you react to the next person you encounter, choose to have a reaction of “Tremendous!” This will better prepare you mentally for success in sales. Because in the profession of selling, we must continue to dial in our skills and have positive emotions that transfer to the customers so they will engage and purchase our products.

So the next you meet asks, “How is your day?” Answer them with “Tremendous!” and see what happens. I am placing my bet on smiles, positive energy, and forward momentum,

Justin Gasman is the finance director at McCaddon Cadillac Buick GMC in Boulder, Colo., and the winner of the 2014 F&Idol contest. Email him at [email protected].