In Hawaii, we have a custom of giving leis to one another as an act of hospitality, honor and friendship. A lei is usually made up of flowers strung together and draped around a person's neck. We give leis to say, "Thank you," and we give leis to say, "Goodbye."
I love the fragrant flowers of Hawaii. The pikake, the plumeria, the white ginger and the pua kenikeni are my favorites. These beautiful flowers are so pungent that everywhere I turn, the wafting fragrance adds a sense of Polynesian aloha to everything I experience. When I wear one of these leis, every person I meet smells wonderful! It does not matter whether the person is tall or short, happy or sad, coming to me with a complaint or a compliment, they all smell wonderful to me! Or course, this fragrance I enjoy has nothing to do with the person I am with but has everything to do with the lei I am wearing.
Attitude is like a lei. Each of us has one, but we have made a choice of what to string together to make up that lei. If you carry around a collection of dried fish, everything starts to smell fishy. If you string together old socks, the whole world seems to have this funny odor to it. Your attitude is like a fragrance you carry around with you. The difference is that skunks carry around a bad odor, while the beautiful Hawaiian plumeria blossoms carry a fragrance.
Whether you like it or not, each of us carries either a fragrance or a bad odor. You choose which you will carry. Some people's poor attitudes follow them around like bad cologne. Others who have wonderful personalities leave a fragrance in their wake as they pass through our lives.
(From Wayne Cordeiro's "Attitudes that Attract Success")