Success demands a thought-out strategy and an ability to outmaneuver your opponents by thinking several steps ahead. No one illustrates those traits better than Frank Underwood, a man who stopped at nothing to quench his thirst for power in the Netflix smash hit, “House of Cards.” Keep on reading to discover what President Underwood can teach you about success.

1. Success demands honest reflection and transformation.

There are two kinds of pain. The sort of pain that makes you strong. Or useless pain… the sort of pain that’s only suffering. I have no patience for useless things.

Successful people don’t stagger through life as a mere spectator. They actively improve their situation every day by confronting their problems without hesitation. I have to confess that writing is my emotional outlet of choice. Expressing my fears and frustrations in words helps me overcome them and evolve into the person I am meant to be. Start a daily journal to cope with your present troubles and leap forward into a better future.

2. Success demands mental strength and an unstoppable attitude.

From this moment on, you are a rock. You absorb nothing, you say nothing, and nothing breaks you.

Successful people don’t agonize over negative feedback. They are aware that it would be silly to expect all people to appreciate their work. While they are always open to constructive criticism, they don’t justify personal attacks with a response.

3. Success demands a clear perception of who you hope to serve.

Power is a lot like real estate. It’s all about location, location, location. The closer you are to the source, the higher your property value.

Successful people avoid the temptation to pander to whatever crowd crosses their path, because nobody likes a phony. Instead, they focus their energry on creating an authentic emotional connection with the people they can relate with most.

4. Success demands consistent effort and a refusal to quit.

For those climbing to the top of the food chain, there can be no mercy. There is but one rule: hunt or be hunted.

Successful people don’t stop when they are tired. They stop when they have won. They strive to identify innovative solutions to common problems that remain unsolved, resulting in a revolving door of exciting opportunities and adventures.

5. Success demands a generous nature and the earning of trust.

Keep being valuable. That’s the best way to show your gratitude.

Successful people don’t expect to be trusted before they have earned it. They give until it hurts, because they know that creating value is the best way to win a person’s trust.

6. Success demands a willingness to overcome resistance.

Friends make the worst enemies.

Successful people don’t automatically label their competitors as “enemies,” but they are willing to push through resistance if their philosophy runs against the accepted “status quo.” When the odds feel insurmountable, they remind themselves of their passion and resolve to remain firm in their conviction.

7. Success demands creativity and an ability to innovate.

“Democracy is so overrated.”

Successful people don’t flinch if they face temporary defeat. They know that failure is an unavoidable part of the evolution process. Success isn’t reserved for a special kind of person, but it can’t be expected without dedication and a burning desire to excel.

While Frank Underwood’s methods might be ruthless, you can’t argue with the results of his cold and calculated nature. I feel his lessons could be applied in a more positive fashion for success in your business and life. What do you think? Tell us in the comments. And if you’re friends with any fellow “House of Cards” fans, make sure to invite them to the conversation by clicking the share button.

First published in Medium - 7 Things House of Cards Taught Me about Success.

Featured photo credit: Kevin Spacey in House of Cards/Netflix via salon.com

Love this article? Share it with your friends on Facebook