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15 Differences Between Ordinary People And Successful People

15 Differences Between Ordinary People And Successful People

It is okay to be ordinary- the vast majority of people are. There are only a handful of billionaires in a world occupied by 7 billion people. What are some of the factors that set these people apart from the pack?

Although you’re not a billionaire, you may find that you possess many aspects of a successful mindset already.

These are some of the differences between the mindsets of ordinary people and the super successful:

1. Ordinary people are stuck with old answers. Successful people ask new questions

Ordinary prefer to live their life the traditional way and repeat the same old processes. For them, it is more secure and comfortable to live this way. But the successful are not satisfied with the status quo. They want to ask new questions and find new answers.

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2. Ordinary people do not set goals. Successful people set realistic goals

Ordinary people often do not see the significance or appeal of setting goals. To them, it really is not that important. But to the successful, goals are compasses that they know will lead them to their desired destination.

3. Ordinary people listen to the opinions of others. Successful people create their own opinions

Ordinary people want to adjust their lives to the standards of others, rather than focus on influencing people with their innovative opinions. Ordinary people think that doing this will make them happy, but successful people are happy with making others adjust to their standards.

4. Ordinary people see failures as the end of the road. Successful people see failures as platforms for growth

No one likes to fail but what differentiates successful people and ordinary people is their attitude towards failure. Ordinary people see it as the end of their plan, because they are not creative enough to reinvent themselves. But successful people see it as a ladder to their next step.

5. Ordinary people do not see the importance of big picture ideas. Successful people cherish these ideas

Ordinary people think hard work is all they need to do to be successful, but successful people know the importance of big picture ideas. They know that these seemingly outlandish ideas could actually generate huge success.

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6. Ordinary people do not value their time. Successful people maximize their time

Ordinary people do not understand how they can make the most of their time and worry about what they are missing out on. Successful people are organised, focused, and do more with the time that they have.

7. Ordinary people see money as evil. Successful people see money as a tool to get what they want

Ordinary people think that those who are successful are either lucky or dishonest, while successful people understand that money will offer them more options in life.

8. Ordinary people make wishes. Successful people act

Ordinary people gamble and hope the government, a spouse, or a boss will change their fortune. But successful people do not wait for things to happen, they make it happen.

9. Ordinary people live for money. Successful people live for their passion

Ordinary people work because of money, but successful people work because of the passion that drives them.

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10. Ordinary people have ordinary expectations. Successful people dream big

Ordinary people have low or average expectations of their lives. On the other hand, successful people believe nothing is impossible and they dream big.

11. Ordinary people live above their means. Rich people live below their means

Ordinary people want everything to be good all at once and struggle with delayed gratification. But successful people know why they have to wait, and they save and invest to make more money.

12.Ordinary people play it safe. Successful people can take risks

Ordinary people understand that by being safe you can protect your wealth, but successful people know that wealth can be attained by taking certain thoughtful risks.

13. Ordinary people believe you cannot have it all. Successful people believe you can have it all

Ordinary people are always playing the victim and claiming you cannot have good things across all the domains of your life. But successful people know you can have wealth, a great family, great health, and a great career.

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14. Ordinary people believe in formal education. Successful people know that education is unending

Ordinary people think the best and only education is in a four-walled institution, but successful people understand that education is unending and you have to keep on learning every day.

15. Ordinary people have a poor attitude. Successful people have a rich attitude

Ordinary people often blame others when their perseverance and determination fall short. But successful people are always working on having a positive attitude, developing their character, and acting in a manner that aligns with their values.

Featured photo credit: http://www.flickr.com via flickr.com

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Casey Imafidon

Specialized in motivation and personal growth, providing advice to make readers fulfilled and spurred on to achieve all that they desire in life.

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Last Updated on July 17, 2019

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

What happens in our heads when we set goals?

Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

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Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

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One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

The Neurology of Ownership

Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

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But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

The Upshot for Goal-Setters

So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

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It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

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Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

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