Successful people are the icing on the cake of any hot discussion. Success is inspiring and interesting to talk about.
The truth is, any successful individual is flesh and blood just like you. They are not born miracles, but it’s the small differences that help them stick out from the rest.
So, what are the key aspects that differentiate them from the crowd?
1. Ordinary people talk about other people, successful people talk about ideas.
Gossiping and bagging others are popular among ordinary folks. They just can’t help but talk about people, often with a vein of jealousy. What successful people do is discuss various ideas that could improve their lives.
Plans, goals, aspirations and innovations — these are all the aspects of discussions between successful individuals.
2. Ordinary people set goals, successful people set detailed plans of actions.
Your “Average Joe” will want to lose weight and give up smoking as a new year’s resolution. Though most likely, he won’t achieve either of these.
Successful people set their goals as well. More importantly, however, they create a detailed set of actions they need to perform in order to achieve their end goal.
Whereas ordinary people just set the goal, successful people determine the daily, weekly, monthly and yearly activities and habits which will lead to achieving their vision.
3. Ordinary people complain about life, successful people adapt to what life throws at them.
How many times did you hear somebody groaning about their problems instead of finally taking responsibility and dealing with their lives? Sometimes, fate can be unfair and brutal.
You see people living better than you, with more chances and doors just waiting to be opened. How you act regarding this fact determines whether you’re just another person in the street or a successful individual.
The fact is, everybody experiences difficulties. Both, people at the bottom as well as the ones at the top, struggle with something. You can’t control the obstacles life throws at you, but you can control the way you react to them.
Whereas ordinary folks simply wish life was easier, successful individuals accept the way it is and find an alternative path.
4. Ordinary people stick to social norms, successful people create their own norms.
Social norms were made to control the masses, not to help them. Normal people will be afraid to diverge from popular patterns. Often times, the only thing that stops them is the need for the approval of others. A successful person doesn’t seek that.
The fact is, if there would be a recipe for success, everyone could easily replicate it. In reality, however, creating and testing your own rules is required to walk an extraordinary path. It’s a path full of ups and downs, but more often than not, it’s the undiscovered route which leads to the superior results.
5. Ordinary people dream of a better future, successful people create a better future.
We all want to live a better life: more happiness, more freedom, better health and more financial independence count to the most desired goals. To some degree, everyone tries to work on achieving them.
However, the average person will focus on dreaming ,while the successful one spares no effort to create that dreamy future. One step at a time: that person knows that acting, and not just dreaming, is what makes he fantasy a reality.
6. Ordinary people let their thoughts influence them, successful people influence their thoughts.
Everyone has doubts and negative thoughts once in a while. It’s just the human nature and the way our brains function. Many people accept these thoughts as ultimate truths and let them dictate their lives.
On the contrary, outstanding people are conscious of the impact their thoughts have, so they influence their thinking to make it work for, and not against them. You can just accept the presence of negative thoughts as a normal appearance, ignore it, and instead think about the more positive aspects.
7. Ordinary people prefer instant gratification, successful people choose long-term rewards.
Do you know anyone who hates to be rewarded? Neither do we. But there’s a difference in how people respond to gratification.
In the era in which we are taught to praise comfort over anything else, it’s easy to settle for instant pleasure. However, successful people recognize that oftentimes, you need to wait to experience the true pleasure.
While the typical person can even get addicted to the short-term reward (overeating, smoking, procrastinating), the successful individual will use the long-term reward as a driving force to achieve any goal.
8. Ordinary people praise overabundance, successful people praise limitation.
A typical person loves to accumulate possessions. The more they have, the happier they believe they will be. Eventually, though, their stuff owns them and not the other way around.
A fancy car they have to pay off, tons of possessions they need to clean, store and rearrange. Inability to set limitations leads to plethora, which distracts you from your goals.
One of the features of truly successful people is that they can limit a lot of things in order to focus on ones that are actually important. Limit unnecessary spending, limit wasting unnecessary time, and limit negative people and thoughts. By limiting, they create an environment in which they thrive.
9. Ordinary people see a half-empty glass, successful people see a half-full glass.
Your attitude undoubtedly influences your behavior. Seeing only the negative side of each thing is definitely a bad habit, but then again, it’s most people’s approach to life.
Plenty of them complain that they lack the determining factor which would make their lives better. Simply put, they believe the glass is half-empty.
When it comes to successful people, they always squeeze as much as possible from what they already have. In other words, they’ll work to find a joy in the half-full glass.
10. Ordinary people judge others, successful people only judge themselves.
Judging people is one of the most horrible habits people can have, yet many do that on a regular basis. As you can already guess, these are the average people. They waste their time judging others, instead of spending it by contributing value to the world.
It is true that successful humans judge as well, yes, they really do! However, they judge themselves — their behavior, their actions, and their attitude. They use judging as a tool to draw conclusions about themselves.
11. Ordinary people watch TV every day, successful people read every day.
The thing that both ordinary and successful people have in common is that they enjoy having some free time. The difference, however, is in the way they spend it.
According to a research, a typical person will spend nine years of their life watching television. The fact is, TV hardly adds any value to your life — hot news, controversial reality shows, and fictional stories.
Generalizing, these are the three kingpins of television. Not to mention the countless ads trying to sell you stuff you don’t need.
Books are on the other side of the spectrum. Reading adds immense value to your life — it widens your horizons and teaches you a lot. Whatever your problem is, there’s already at least one book discussing it. Since successful people constantly seek to improve, they prefer getting lost in reading in lieu of mindlessly staring at a screen.
12. Ordinary people buy things, successful people buy value.
Another similarity between the two discussed groups is obviously spending money — they both do. Special offers, extra discounts, and bonuses are all designed to trick the typical person into buying things they don’t actually need.
Most of these things will add some value to their lives for a few moments, but that soon fades away, lost in the pile of other possessions. And in turn, so does the money.
Successful folks would rather exchange their money for value. This doesn’t necessary have to be a physical thing. Commonly, it’s value in the form of experiences, new opportunities, long-term ROI, or adventures.
13. Ordinary people want to be better than others, successful people want to be a better self.
Oftentimes, people get lost in comparing themselves to others. As a result, they lose self-esteem and confidence. They base their wishes on other people’s achievements.
On the contrary, successful individuals pursue being a better person than they were yesterday. What’s more, they wish the same to others.
14. Ordinary people can’t say no, successful people often say no.
“No” is among the most powerful words you can use to accelerate your success. Nonetheless, lots of people underestimate the risk of not using it enough. They say “yes” to whatever situation is thrown at them. Consequently, they end up saying “no” to the things that matter the most.
From a short-term perspective, saying “no” can be scary. But then again, considering the long-term view, it’s better to say “no” now, rather than regret the subsequent consequences of saying “yes”.
You have to say “no” to bad eating habits, smoking, and sedentary lifestyle so you can say “yes” to being more healthy.
The successful individual takes the advantage of saying “no” on a daily basis, while the ordinary one underestimates the power of this seemingly simple two letter word.
Featured photo credit: Steve Wilson via flickr.com