Rule of 3s

The Rule of 3s is a rule of thumb about survival. Your survival is in jeopardy after:

3 Seconds without the right attitude;

3 Minutes without air;

3 Hours without shelter

3 Days without water;

3 Weeks without food;

3 Months without an internet connection.

In the United States, we have come to take much for granted. It is readily available, free or cheap. Yet we should never take the Rule of 3s for granted. It is easy to assume just another day and mayhem strikes leaving us in the middle of a blizzard or an earthquake. Shelter in the blizzard is a vital need. Buried under rubble we can slowly suffocate. Air, shelter, water and food are physiological needs for survival.

The highest of the priorities, attitude, is different from the physiological needs. It is both spiritual and physiological. It drives your emotions, your actions and your “want to.” It is the dwelling place of hope or the home of despair.

Attitude is the outward reflection of an internal expectation. Beliefs, values, character, and experiences influence our attitude. Yet, the direction our attitude takes is based on our decisions and actions. A person with a persevering or expectant attitude can do and will do what is best for their team, their family and themselves regardless the challenge. A positive attitude is about hope, and “hope will not fail us” if we believe ancient holy writings.

Survival training is about more than knowledge of the environment and little tricks. It is about an attitude of doggedness. Firefighters train to this attitude. It is ingrained there is a way through or out of any situation; we need only to find it. Would you want a rescuer with a different point of view? It is said, “If you believe you can or you believe you can’t, either way you are correct.”

My wife and I went through a very tough spot in our marriage. I was meeting with a mentor and I expressed I didn’t feel love for her any more. This was my introduction to “fake it until you make it.” He helped me discover that love is a decision which creates emotion and not the other way around. My mentor showed me how my attitude could be changed one step at a time by pretending.

Dick E. challenged me to make coffee for my wife every morning as a small step toward learning to love her again. This was because he knew I hate coffee breath and she loves coffee. It was a simple 30-day challenge. There was an amazing transformation as she responded to the coffee. I found new joy in learning how to make better coffee to realize the delight in her face. That was 14 years ago in our 31-year-old marriage. I love her.

Earl Nightingale presents the finest discussion of attitude I have heard in his audio series, “Lead the Field.” He calls attitude “The Magic Word.” Mr. Nightingale claims, “First, it’s your attitude at the beginning of a difficult task that, more than anything else will bring about its successful outcome. Secondly, your attitude, towards others determines their attitudes toward you.” There is much more wisdom in the series about directing your attitude that I can present here.

“Fake it until you make it.” This is a strategy that says, “Claim it.” Be positive about life, it is your decision.  Start with a smile. It is like taking a step, you just do it. So it is forced. It may look false but do it. Slowly you will notice others reacting differently toward you. They are smiling back at you. They may laugh at that funny smile but you made a happy moment in their life. Solutions will come a bit easier as you face them with cheer and new-found friends will gather to help you.

What do you need to conquer? First put on that smile. What is the next step?


P.S. (Can you post script to a blog?)

Some quotes on attitude from some of my friends:

  • “We do what we believe.” – Dave Rathcamp
  • “You’re not dead ‘til you quit fighting; when you quit fighting, you’re dead.” – James Rieder

And some other’s:

  • “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.” – Maya Angelou
  • “Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit.” – George Sheehan

A blog I felt presents the right attitude:

“Walking in Sunshine” – Genie Speaks

About sturner2

I am curious, not fearful or unafraid. I have delivered babies into this world. I have held the dying until their departure. Life, what is if for? What is it about? Do I know or don't I? Knowledge is elusive and never complete. The more I know, the more I know I don't know. My boss once asked me if I knew what I was doing. "No sir," was my reply, "but that has never stopped me before." This is one of those valuable lessons my mom taught me. Just because you don't know doesn't mean you shouldn't. I am willing. I am not always able. I have heard that "If it is worth doing, it is worth doing until you get it right." Here am I, send me. What is there about me that is different than all the rest? Possibly not all that much. I am a soul longing to do more, share more and know more. Born into a body in 1960, my parents raised me and continue to show me. My wife loves me. My children teach me. My friends stand by me. I share in this journey with many others. I am grateful. I have experienced more than 30 years as a husband, more than 30 years as a dad, and more than 30 years in the fire service. I continue to grow, feel and learn; and too, I diminish, numb, and forget. In honor or disgrace, blame or praise, I am prepared.
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7 Responses to Rule of 3s

  1. Genie says:

    I’m sitting here on my back porch, reading your blog and just loving what I’m reading..then I see the link to one of my blog posts. I am so honored that you included a reference to my work in this excellent post. Many Blessings!

  2. Carrie Nyman says:

    Great post! And thank you for commenting on mine (I always feel like I’m talking to myself while writing so it’s always nice to know that’s not true).

  3. This is excellent; we all underestimate the importance of attitude, including those of us who coach others to adopt a positive one. This is a wonderful reminder.

    P.S. The last item on your list of 3’s made me laugh out loud.

  4. Johnc75 says:

    I like this post, enjoyed this one regards for posting. He removes the greatest ornament of friendship, who takes away from it respect. by Cicero. gfdgefffaedk

  5. Johnk642 says:

    Thanksamundo for the post.Really thank you! Awesome. dagkkddbabke

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