Do you know someone who is financially, emotionally, and physically secure? Ever met a man or woman with healthy relationships, a healthy pocketbook, a fit physique, and a charismatic smile that tells you they’re happy and they know it?
Ever wondered how successful people got that way?
As it turns out, these go-getters have a lot in common. Join their ranks and increase your personal and professional satisfaction with these 14 tips from successful people:
1. Define “success” for yourself.
What does your perfect day look like? How do you spend your time, who do you see, what do you do? Is there a family in this picture? Do you get dressed up or embrace your inner pajama-wearing night owl? No two definitions of “success” are the same, nor should they be — the state is that highly personal one where you are happy, healthy, and provided for.
2. Recognize “success” as a dynamic state, with a changing definition.
What you want and need, what makes you happy, will evolve over time. Allow this evolution to shape your ambitions.
3. Enjoy the process.
Because what you want, need and pursue will change, focus on the process rather than a finite end state. After all, the process is all that you have to keep you going day in and day out; find satisfaction there.
4. Be willing to give things up.
If you have time “for yourself,” or “to relax,” or “you time” during your first year of startup in a new business, you aren’t working hard enough. Likewise, don’t expect a day off during a crunch season in your industry or at your company. “Work-life balance” often means taking only as much as you are happy with from one, to feed the other. In practice, there are a finite number of hours in the day. If you are using them to pursue success, there won’t be much left over.
5. Relentlessly pursue goals.
First, establish a quantifiable, readily explained goal, stated in simple terms. Then, dedicate all your resources of time, energy and money to it. If an endeavor does not further this stated goal, then do not pursue it.
6. Study, every day.
There is such a vast amount to explore in this world and your corner in it. Successful people are intellectually curious, insatiably hungry for more information and new outlooks.
7. Take advantage of small chunks of time.
People who say they “don’t have time” are wrong — they do have time. They’re probably wasting it zoning out on the train, watching television while they cook, or in some other dribbling way. Know where your time goes, and use small parts of it. It takes a few minutes to return emails or phone calls, or make a little bit of progress around your house or office. Pull a weed every time you step across the lawn, always have a book handy, have the phone number of the next call you need to make at the ready, in case you find yourself in line. There are scraps of time littered throughout your day — use them productively.
8. Rest when needed.
We’re human. We tire. We need sleep. We need quality food and fuel. Give your body and mind these things, if you expect them to perform.
9. Keep a “brains book.”
Don’t rely on your memory — keep a small notebook with you at all times to jot down tasks, notes, and great ideas as they come.
10. See challenges as a source of inspiration.
You will fail at some point, or many points. Dust yourself off, and resolve to be better. If you’re down, you’re out, and you’ll never become successful without staying in the game.
11. Allow not even the sky to limit you.
Someone who says you can’t means they can’t, or they haven’t tried. Dream big. Work harder.
12. Live joyfully.
Successful people are such by their own terms. When you get there, and as you work to stay there, enjoy it! This is your life, your days, your time, and you built this success. Be proud. Be happy.
13. Empower the team.
It takes a village to do most things worth doing. Also, you’re not the best at everything. Surround yourself with good people, pay them well, let them do their jobs. Trust them. Give them room to grow. Create an environment in which you are an important part of someone else’s success.
14. Peel back the curtain.
Approach your own feelings, responses, and challenges with intellectual curiosity and a determination to become better.
Newly committed to excellence? Read up on the 20 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People.