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Unconventional Habits of Really Successful People

Unconventional Habits of Really Successful People

We all want to find success. However, we don’t just want to find success, we want to really make it big.

Children and adults today want to grow up to be Steve Jobs… or the actor that stars as Steve Jobs in one of three biopics. But, as any successful person will tell you, it is not enough just to want to be successful. There are certain traits that successful people have that help them get to where they are and where they want to be.

These traits are often very subtle. They don’t usually include getting up early or getting enough exercise. Neither do they include being practical — like making sure your devices are fully charged and starting the day with a killer to-do list. These things are a given when you are successful. If your life is taking off, you don’t have time to sleep until noon. You probably don’t have time to sleep until seven in the morning!

Here are five unconventional, yet subtle, habits of the most successful people:

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They Are Modest On The Outside

A really successful person is often proud of what they do. But, they will not be the ones who are showing off their success by bragging.

In many cases, people who show off their wealth and success are overcompensating for other failures. The truly successful people do not need to do this. Not only do they not need to do this, they often do not have time to seek other people’s approval.

With this in mind, Steve Jobs’ wardrobe choices become much more understandable.

They Don’t Just Say “Yes”

Any motivational speaker will tell you that you need to start saying “yes” if you want to really take advantage of all the opportunities in life. However, that is not universally true.

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You need to learn the difference between saying “yes” and saying “yes” to the right opportunities. If successful people said yes to every great opportunity that presented itself to them, they would run themselves into the ground.

You also need to learn that not every great opportunity will get you where you want to be. When you find something that will help you get to where you want to go, you should almost always say yes. If it is not in line with your pathway to success, you need to learn how to say no.

They Consider The Return On Investment

Many of the most successful people in the world are more worried about return on investment than anyone else. In particular, they worry a lot about how and where they spend their time.

Time is a construct that you use to organize your days. But as they say, time is money. Successful people choose to spend and invest their time wisely.

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For example, a successful person would consider what would most benefit their goals before making decisions about what they will do that day.

This is how CEOs and other executives choose which meetings to attend. For many CEOs, it makes little sense to invest time in some things. The reason your CEO is not at the company conference is because their time is not well invested in the travel, preparation, and time spent at the conference. That time could be better spent doing things that will show a real return on their goals.

At the same time, you should think about how you spend your leisure time. If you can spend five hours a day on Netflix, you are likely not investing your time in something productive and worthwhile.

They Work Anywhere

Most people think that you work at the office. If you’re busy, you might take your work home with you. But successful people know how to get work done wherever they are.

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This is not just about going into a coffee shop and plugging into a task. A successful person sees every connection as a possible opportunity. They can remained switched on for incredible amounts of time. Hence, they do not miss the small things that other people might.

They Dedicate Time To Answering Emails

Emails are one of the most cumbersome parts of business. Most people receive dozens of unnecessary emails every day. If you are a successful person, you could see hundreds of emails daily.

Emails are necessary, but like other office infrastructure, they are distracting.

Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, manages his emails by send them into a safe box. He then answers all of them at the same time the next day.

This is a smart strategy because it allows you to complete one task and then move on. Emails can serve as huge points of distraction. When you find basic hacks like this for keeping up with busy, but important, work, you can consider yourself to be in the realm of the successful.

Successful people are not successful because they get up early. They are not successful because they are former athletes. Successful people become very successful when they actively find ways to make both their time and money work for them in the best way possible.

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Last Updated on October 15, 2018

How to Calm Down When You Are Overwhelmed: 7 Quick Ways to Try

How to Calm Down When You Are Overwhelmed: 7 Quick Ways to Try

Do you sometimes feel that you add items to your to-do list faster than you tick them off? Do you spend most of your day worrying about your lack of time?

The truth is, no matter how much we love our job, or how productive we believe we are under stress, there comes a moment when the pressure rises above boiling point. The sheer number of urgent tasks multiplies in a geometric progression. New possibilities no longer sound inspiring, they sound overwhelming and equal more work.

If that’s where you are right now – keep reading! If not, it doesn’t mean you should wait until you get there to learn how to cope with a demanding work schedule and how to calm yourself down quickly when you feel overwhelmed.

Here are 7 quick and easy tips on how to calm down when you are overwhelmed:

1. Let go of a few activities

Yes, it’s that easy! Take a look at your to-do list and ask yourself, “If I don’t do it today, will it matter a month from now?”

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Not every urgent task is important. Just like not every important, high pay-off task is urgent. The best way to keep yourself from getting overwhelmed and to manage your time is to know the difference between the two and learn to simplify your life by getting your to-do list down to three big tasks.

2. Take deep breaths to calm down

This advice sounds so simple it’s often overlooked. But it works better (and faster) than any other relaxation technique out there.

There is a direct connection between our emotional state and breathing. An anxious, frustrated or overwhelmed person breathes as if they have just finished running a marathon. A calm person breathes differently. Their breathing is deep, slow and steady. So when you have a panic attack, the best way to bring your heart rate down and to regain your cool is to change your breathing.

Try this now:

Take a slow, long deep breath in, filling your lungs with air and expanding your diaphragm. Hold your breath for four counts and then slowly release the air through your mouth. Repeat four times and notice frustration and the feeling of being overwhelmed dissolve with each long exhale of these calming breaths.

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3. Make “Just one thing” your mantra

When we feel overwhelmed by the amount of tasks on our to-do list, it’s easy to enter the ‘deer in the headlights’ state. You see deadlines approaching directly towards you, and you know that something has to be done about them, but you just don’t know where to start.

The best way to get your mind out of an ‘inactivity trance’ is to create momentum. This is what makes the “Just one thing” mantra so powerful. It helps to change our expectation that everything has to be completed right now, “or else.”

Next time you feel overwhelmed make grabbing a cup of coffee your “Just one thing.” You can do it, right? Then come back, pick one of the smallest tasks on your to-do list and tell yourself you’ll do just that one task. This is your next “Just one thing” that you will concentrate on until it’s complete. After that you can move on to the next task and so on.

It’s not “One thing at a time.” Saying this implies that there is a huge line of other tasks waiting to get done and that’s not the message you want to keep repeating to yourself. Learn how to focus here and stop getting overwhelmed.

4. Reduce the multi-tasking and multi-thinking

It’s been proven that multi-tasking is very inefficient, to the point of dumbing us down (more than smoking marijuana does). The same is true for multi-thinking, when your mind frantically jumps from one thought to another, trying to focus on and analyze several things all at once.

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Fortunately, there is help. A few minutes of meditation or brainwave music is all it takes to start feeling more relaxed, more creative and less overwhelmed.

5. Get moving

Any exercise you engage in – be it walking or dancing to your favorite beat – helps to release endorphins, the ‘feel-good’ hormones, through your body and to clear your mind.

Staying active also increases your productivity, enhances your ability to combat stress and anxiety. It also helps you to release the tension, boosting your mood and changing the thoughts that induce the sense of being overwhelmed.

The best part is you don’t have to spend hours in the gym to get the mind-soothing benefits of exercise. Even as little as 15 minutes of dancing or jogging can go a long way towards making you feel better and staying calmer.

6. Change your surroundings

We all need and deserve to take vacations from work woes and family responsibilities. Unfortunately, spending two weeks lazing on a beach, toes in the sand and a Mojito in hand, is not always an option. However, this doesn’t mean that we can’t take short ‘vacations’ from work stress and the technology buzz.

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Go outside for a few minutes and enjoy the sunshine. Stop at a park instead of driving straight home from work. Sometimes changing your surroundings and ‘spicing up your routine’ is all it takes to change your perspective on things and find creative solutions to seemingly complex and overwhelming problems.

7. Get some pet therapy

Studies have shown what most of us already guessed – our pets can be a great help during stressful moments. Simple actions such as petting or playing with your dog or cat can lower high blood pressure, boost your immune system and boost your mood.

Besides, pets can make the best conversation partners to share your frustrations with. They listen, they love you unconditionally and they never talk back or say, “I told you so.”

Final thoughts

Don’t wait for stress to hit you to start practicing these quick ways to calm down when you are overwhelmed. The best way to enjoy a worry-free life is not to push yourself to the limit of being overwhelmed and frustrated.

Featured photo credit: Dardan via unsplash.com

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