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Do you ever wonder why it can be such a struggle to get ahead? You might hope and pray that you get the next viral product the newest, hottest social media account, but you’re just as likely to win the lottery. In order to be highly successful you need to take action, work hard and be highly disciplined!

Here are some habits that highly successful people have in common:

1. They Keep The End-Goal In Mind

Successful people have a clear grasp of the big picture and are relentless in their pursuit of it. They are also intensely goal-oriented and have a keen sense of what they want and how they plan to achieve it. The end-goal should always be top of mind, with all smaller pursuits aligned towards achieving it. It can be easy to lose sight of the big picture when working through the chaos of day-to-day issues, but even the most mundane tasks can seem exciting and important when keeping the bigger picture in focus. The best way to stay motivated is to set smaller more achievable goals that help move you towards the end-goal.

5 rules of goal setting:

  1. Set goals that motivate you: Goals should be important to you and relevant in achieving the bigger picture. If you have no interest in the outcome of a goal then there is little to no chance of you actually accomplishing it.
  2. Set SMART goals: Design your goals to be simple and SMART – Specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.
  3. Write it all down: The physical act of writing down your goals makes them real. It forces you to take a potentially ambiguous concept and transform it into something tangible and meaningful.
  4. Make an action plan: Once you have your goals laid out, create an action plan with the steps required to achieve them. Create to-do lists and prioritize what you want to accomplish each day.
  5. Stick with it: Goal setting is a process, not a means to an end. Priorities can change and goals may need to need to as well.
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2. They Are Proactive

Successful people do not let fate guide them, rather, they take the bull by the horns and create their own success. They are responsible for their own behaviour and actions, choosing not to dwell on genetics, circumstances or conditions as a scapegoat. They take on what they can actually influence, and don’t worry too much about what is outside their sphere of control. If you’re constantly focusing on: “I can’t, I have to, if only”, then you’re choosing to be reactive and allowing the environment to dictate your actions. Instead, shift your mindset to focus on what you “can do” or “will do”!

3. They Aren’t Afraid to Fail

Successful people do well because they don’t fail, right? WRONG! Failure is absolutely essential to success. Nothing provides a better life lesson than experiencing failure and coming out the other end intact. Failure teaches us about compassion, kindness, empathy, and achievement. It also helps us grow and inspires us to find creative and unique solutions to insurmountable obstacles. Only those who experience the depths of failure can overcome their fears, risk it all and truly reach for the stars.

Sometimes adversity is what you need to face in order to become successful – Zig Zigler

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4. They Take Action

Dream big and aspire to greatness! Those are certainly some of the key drivers of success, but without any action they are merely wasted potential. Great leaders act quickly, decisively and often. They don’t procrastinate or waste time on what they can’t control, but instead focus on what they can control with an innate sense of urgency. Successful people act on the information they have at hand and don’t sit around waiting for the perfect idea, solution or product to fall into their laps.

An idea not coupled with action will never get any bigger than the brain cell it occupied – Arnold Glasow

5. They Have a Positive Attitude

Do you ever notice that successful people seem to be relentlessly positive? There is a very good reason for that, primarily because negativity kills success. It suppresses creativity and critical decision making, it increases stress, and it makes you a toxic person, pushing your colleagues and friends away. Success doesn’t breed positivity, rather positivity breeds success!

Tips on how to be a more positive person:

  1. Stop reading all that negative news
  2. Listen to upbeat music
  3. Surround yourself with positive people
  4. Read inspirational books
  5. Meditate and practice self-care
  6. Exercise daily
  7. Show your gratitude to those around you
  8. Don’t dwell on your failures

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6. They Are People Oriented

One of the striking things you’ll notice about highly successful people is that they are almost always easy and interesting to talk to. They aren’t afraid of meeting new people and joining the conversation. They also understand the importance of surrounding themselves with other successful people who challenge their ideas and offer them new perspective. Even if you’re an introvert, you need to be able to create and foster relationships to be successful.

Here are 5 tips to being a better networker:

  1. Just show up! Just being in the room is half the battle.
  2. Relax! Really, just relax. Don’t worry about making a sale or winning over an Executive.
  3. Strengthen existing relationships. You don’t always need to be hunting for new contacts. Deepen your existing relationships.
  4. Ask great questions. Show genuine interest in who you’re talking to and have an actual conversation.
  5. Don’t worry about what you’ll get out of a contact. It’s about developing relationships, not what you can squeeze out of the moment.

7. They Read…a LOT!

What do Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Warren Buffet all have in common? Well, they certainly have more money than you or I could spend in a 100 lifetimes, and they also read …a lot! However, it is not the mere act of reading that makes someone successful, but the pursuit of knowledge. Reading allows us to expand our minds and our imagination and provides us with a near infinite source of inspiration.

Favourite books of the some of the most rich and influential people in the world:

  • Bill gates (Reads 1 book per week)
    1. The Better Angels of Our Nature (By: Steven Pinker)
    2. Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World (By: Hans Rosling)
    3. The Man Who Fed The World (By: Leon Hesser)

  • Warren Buffet (Reads 600-1000 pages, or 1-2 books, per day… wow!)
    1. The Intelligent Investor (By: Benjamin Graham)
    2. Business adventures: Twelve Classic Tales From the World of Wall Street (By: John Brooks)
    3. Where are the Customers’ Yachts? (By: Fred Schwed Jr.)

  • Elon Musk (Learned to build rockets …just by reading books!)
    1. The Lord of the Rings (By: J.R.R. Tolkien)
    2. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (By: Douglas Adams)
    3. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future (By: Peter Thiel)

  • Oprah Winfrey (Reads 1 book per month)
    1. A New Earth (By: Eckhart Tolle)
    2. Discover the Power Within You (By: Eric Butterworth)
    3. The Poisonwood Bible (By: Barbara Kingsolver)
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8. They Get Up Early

You don’t have to be like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and get up at 4:30am to be successful. But most high-achievers do wake up 2-3 hours before their workday begins. Waking up before everyone else allows you to have some quite time to mentally prepare yourself for the day and get some work in before anyone starts bugging you. Not only will you be more productive, but you’ll also be more tired by the end of the day, which will lead to a much better sleep! And getting into a good sleep routine is one of the best things you can do to boost your immune system and improve your health.

9. They Get Enough Sleep

More important than getting up early, is getting enough sleep. Just a few of the amazing benefits of proper sleep include an improved immune system, reduced stress, healthy weight loss and improved memory. Albert Einstein reportedly got up to 10 hours of sleep per night; most successful people sleep around 7-8 hours per night. So if you want to wake up early and get a sufficient amount of Zzz’s you’ll need to tuck in for the night well before the clock strikes 12.

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10. They Prioritize Their Health

Personal health and well-being are the bedrock of productivity and success. A regular workout regime will clear your head, improve your mood and boost motivation, and it can be as simple as a 30 minute walk, bike ride or jog. But burning calories isn’t the only pillar of a healthy lifestyle, the calories you consume matter as well. A lot of what we eat is habitual, and unfortunately a lot of those habits are bad for you. Get rid of all those processed fast-foods and fill your pantry with healthier whole food options. Lastly, take some time out of every day and focus inwards on yourself. Stress is arguably a bigger killer than fast food or lack of exercise. So go meditate, take a bath, or read a book. Anything that will take your mind off of the daily grind and help you de-stress will do wonders for your mental health.

14 Comments »

  1. Wonderful post! I fully agree that getting up early is a great habit as well as getting enough sleep! One can be so much more productive and efficient during the course of the day. Thanks for sharing these great tips!

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