Advertising
Advertising

These 10 Questions Can Foretell If You’ll Be Successful In Life

These 10 Questions Can Foretell If You’ll Be Successful In Life

Success isn’t limited to just how far you’ve climbed up the corporate ladder, but other aspects of your life, too, such as instilling a healthy balance between work and family, pursuing and achieving various goals and dreams, and simply embracing who you are. However, there are scientifically proven signs that will indicate whether or not you will truly be successful in life, in whatever way you choose to define success. Here are 10 questions that predict whether you’ll spread your wings and soar toward your goals and success.

1. Are You Open And Mentally Prepared To Grow?

People, who are opposed to the idea that people’s character, intelligence and creativity can change, tend to have slower development in their personal growth, because they want to avoid failure instead of working on those three areas of their lives. But those people with a “growth mindset” see failure as a learning point from which to leap from as they bound onward and upward toward success. They embrace challenges, survive setbacks, embrace and improve based off of criticism, and will attain their goals. Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck researched how people view their personality’s influence on their happiness and success and found that those positive and open individuals believe their true potential is limitless and so are more willing to work harder and be more dedicated.

Advertising

2. Are You Private About Your Goals?

Surprisingly, psychologists say that telling someone about your personal goal makes it less likely to materialize. Entrepreneur Derek Sivers, who spoke in a TED Talk Keep Your Goals To Yourself said that to meet a goal, a person must take steps, put in the hard work and not stop until he or she is satisfied. But once you tell someone about your goal and they recognize your mission, that’s called “social reality” where the mind is swayed into feeling that you’ve already met your goal and you’re no longer motivated to proceed.

3. Are You Happy?

Positivity is a key ingredient to success and being happy helps with that upbeat outlook. That doesn’t necessarily mean you should be satisfied and not strive for greater goals and successes, but be happy with you and where you’re at each step of the way. Psychiatrist and author of Heaven and Hell: The Psychology of the Emotions George Vaillant’s research revealed that love is truly the key to happiness. Even if an individual relishes success in work, rakes in a boatload of money and enjoys good healthy, that person will not be completely happy without love and positive relationships.

Advertising

4. Do You Have A High Level Of Self-Esteem?

It takes confidence to have the competence to grow and gain successes. Authors Katty Kay and Claire Shipman, who penned The Confidence Code, note that low self-confidence leads to inaction, but taking those first steps armed with an action plan will boost a person’s belief that he or she really can succeed.

5. Are You Exactly Who You Want To Be?

Exuding the qualities of successful leaders doesn’t mean you have to be fake, but instead means you’re working toward the new and improved you. In her Harvard Business Review article titled The Authenticity Paradox, professor Herminia Ibarra said that “play-acting” will help you gain confidence and others will feel the same way about you, too.

Advertising

6. Do You Have Extreme Will Power?

One method to increasing your will power is to select one thing to improve upon bit by bit every day and to not procrastinate things that take just a few minutes to tackle, such as loading the dishwasher after dinner or swapping out the laundry in the washer to the dryer. Author James Clear notes that elite performers in a wide variety of fields, from athletes to musicians to artists and even CEOs, are more consistent than others.

7. Are You A Social Butterfly?

People who are both smart and socially adept tend to earn more. According to a study conducted by Catherine Weinberger, an economics professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, having both cognitive ability and social skills are one key to success.

Advertising

8. Are You Ambitious?

One characteristic that repeatedly appears in highly successful people is grit. Psychologist Angela Duckworth has studying both kids and adults and found that those who have grit, or stamina, are hard workers with their minds set on a goal and will work harder than others to turn that goal into a reality. Jason Ma, author of Youth Leaders 3.0: Stories, Insights, and Tips for Next-Generation Achievers, notes that anyone can be ambitious with the right motivation.

9. Are You A Risk Taker?

Ambitious people dead set on achieving their goals also know they often must take some risk, which can be quite difficult for others. Ma noted that oftentimes a breakthrough in the path to success can be spurred out of a well-managed crisis. These people also don’t spend too much time honing their skill set, but rather executing a strategy utilizing those valuable skill sets.

10. Are You Steadfast?

Do not compete with others and let their negativity or successes drag you down. Ma notes that a person’s biggest competitor should be himself or herself. Do not measure yourself against others and do not them steer you off course.

How To Be Successful In A Nutshell

As you work on the “new you” with an eye on the prize of success, remember Maslow’s hierarchy of needs that explains how you cannot be the best you can be until your first tier needs are met. These are the basic needs, such as food, financial ability to pay your bills, and support and self-esteem that buoys your self-worth. Once you have a game plan mapped out for meeting those basic needs, then begin working on the next levels and charge ahead down that path to success. Be sure to surround yourself with other ambitious, driven, goal-setting people and support each other as you work toward attaining those goals.

More by this author

You Don’t Need To Be Strong All The Time, It’s OK To Feel Weak And Cry No More Addiction To Work: 5 Tips On Maintaining Work-Life Balance 12 Squat Exercises For Ladies Who Want Bubble Butts Stranded Killer Whale Cries For Help, People Do Something Priceless To It Two Grandmothers Broke The Tradition And Gave Their Grandkids The Best Wedding Blessing Ever

Trending in Productivity

1 11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits 2 How Your Attitude Determines Your Success 3 How to Ask for Help When You Need It Most 4 How Much Do You Need to Give Up to Start Over? 5 Is It Really Better to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone?

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on March 21, 2019

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

Most gurus talk about habits in a way that doesn’t help you:

You need to push yourself more. You can’t be lazy. You need to wake up at 5 am. You need more motivation. You can never fail…blah blah “insert more gibberish here.”

But let me share with you the unconventional truths I found out:

To build and change habits, you don’t need motivation or wake up at 5 am. Heck, you can fail multiple times, be lazy, have no motivation and still pull it off with ease.

It’s quite simple and easy to do, especially with the following list I’m going to show to you. But remember, Jim Rohn used to say,

“What is simple and easy to do is also simple and easy not to do.”

The important things to remember when changing your habits are both simple and easy, just don’t think that they don’t make any difference because they do.

In fact, they are the only things that make a difference.

Let’s see what those small things are, shall we?

1. Start Small

The biggest mistake I see people doing with habits is by going big. You don’t go big…ever. You start small with your habits.

Want to grow a book reading habit? Don’t start reading a book a day. Start with 10 pages a day.

Want to become a writer? Don’t start writing 10,000 words a day. Start with 300 words.

Want to lose weight? Don’t stop eating ice cream. Eat one less ball of it.

Whatever it is, you need to start small. Starting big always leads to failure. It has to, because it’s not sustainable.

Start small. How small? The amount needs to be in your comfort zone. So if you think that reading 20 pages of a book is a bit too much, start with 10 or 5.

It needs to appear easy and be easy to do.

Do less today to do more in a year.

2. Stay Small

There is a notion of Kaizen which means continuous improvement. They use this notion in habits where they tell you to start with reading 1 page of a book a day and then gradually increase the amount you do over time.

Advertising

But the problem with this approach is the end line — where the “improvement” stops.

If I go from reading 1 page of a book a day and gradually reach 75 and 100, when do I stop? When I reach 1 book a day? That is just absurd.

When you start a habit, stay at it in the intensity you have decided. Don’t push yourself for more.

I started reading 20 pages of a book a day. It’s been more than 2 years now and I’ve read 101 books in that period. There is no way I will increase the number in the future.

Why?

Because reading 40 to 50 books a year is enough.

The same thing applies to every other habit out there.

Pick a (small) number and stay at it.

3. Bad Days Are 100 Percent Occurrence

No matter how great you are, you will have bad days where you won’t do your habit. Period.

There is no way of going around this. So it’s better to prepare yourself for when that happens instead of thinking that it won’t ever happen.

What I do when I miss a day of my habit(s) is that I try to bounce back the next day while trying to do habits for both of those days.

Example for that is if I read 20 pages of a book a day and I miss a day, the next day I will have to read 40 pages of a book. If I miss writing 500 words, the next day I need to write 1000.

This is a really important point we will discuss later on rewards and punishments.

This is how I prepare for the bad days when I skip my habit(s) and it’s a model you should take as well.

4. Those Who Track It, Hack It

When you track an activity, you can objectively tell what you did in the past days, weeks, months, and years. If you don’t track, you will for sure forget everything you did.

There are many different ways you can track your activities today, from Habitica to a simple Excel sheet that I use, to even a Whatsapp Tracker.

Peter Drucker said,

“What you track is what you do.”

So track it to do it — it really helps.

But tracking is accompanied by one more easy activity — measuring.

5. Measure Once, Do Twice

Peter Drucker also said,

“What you measure is what you improve.”

So alongside my tracker, I have numbers with which I measure doses of daily activities:

For reading, it’s 20 pages.
For writing, it’s 500 words.
For the gym, it’s 1 (I went) or 0 (didn’t go).
For budgeting, it’s writing down the incomes and expenses.

Tracking and measuring go hand in hand, they take less than 20 seconds a day but they create so much momentum that it’s unbelievable.

6. All Days Make a Difference

Will one day in the gym make you fit? It won’t.

Will two? They won’t.

Will three? They won’t.

Which means that a single gym session won’t make you fit. But after 100 gym sessions, you will look and feel fit.

What happened? Which one made you fit?

The answer to this (Sorites paradox)[1] is that no single gym session made you fit, they all did.

No single day makes a difference, but when combined, they all do. So trust the process and keep on going (small).

7. They Are Never Fully Automated

Gurus tell you that habits become automatic. And yes, some of them do, like showering a certain way of brushing your teeth.

But some habits don’t become automatic, they become a lifestyle.

What I mean by that is that you won’t automatically “wake up” in the gym and wonder how you got there.

It will just become a part of your lifestyle.

Advertising

The difference is that you do the first one automatically, without conscious thought, while the other is a part of how you live your life.

It’s not automatic, but it’s a decision you don’t ponder on or think about — you simply do it.

It will become easy at a certain point, but they will never become fully automated.

8. What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

Marshall Goldsmith has a great book with the same title to it. The phrase means that sometimes, you will need to ditch certain habits to make room for other ones which will bring you to the next step.

Don’t be afraid to evolve your habits when you sense that they don’t bring you where you want to go.

When I started reading, it was about reading business and tactic books. But two years into it, I switched to philosophy books which don’t teach me anything “applicable,” but instead teach me how to think.

The most important ability of the 21st century is the ability to learn, unlearn, and relearn. The strongest tree is the willow tree – not because it has the strongest root or biggest trunk, but because it is flexible enough to endure and sustain anything.

Be like a willow, adapting to the new ways of doing things.

9. Set a Goal and Then Forget It

The most successful of us know what they want to achieve, but they don’t focus on it.

Sounds paradoxical? You’re right, it does. But here is the logic behind it.

You need to have a goal of doing something – “I want to become a healthy individual” – and then, you need to reverse engineer how to get there with your habits- “I will go to the gym four times a week.”

But once you have your goal, you need to “forget” about it and only focus on the process. Because you are working on the process of becoming healthy and it’s always in the making. You will only be as healthy as you take care of your body.

So you have a goal which isn’t static but keeps on moving.

If you went to the gym 150 times year and you hit your goal, what would you do then? You would stop going to the gym.

This is why goal-oriented people experience yo-yo effect[2] and why process-oriented people don’t.

The difference between process-oriented and goal-oriented people is that the first focus on daily actions while others only focus on the reward at the finish line.

Set a goal but then forget about it and reap massive awards.

10. Punish Yourself

Last two sections are pure Pavlovian – you need to punish bad behavior and reward good behavior. You are the only person who decides what is good and what is bad for you, but when you do, you need to rigorously follow that.

Advertising

I’ve told you in point #3 about bad days and how after one occurs, I do double the work on the next day. That is one of my forms of punishments.

It’s the need to tell your brain that certain behaviors are unacceptable and that they lead to bad outcomes. That’s what punishments are for.

You want to tell your brain that there are real consequences to missing your daily habits.[3]

No favorite food to eat or favorite show to watch or going to the cinema for a new Marvel movie- none, zero, zilch.

The brain will remember these bad feelings and will try to avoid the behaviors that led to them as much as possible.

But don’t forget the other side of the same coin.

11. Reward Yourself

When you follow and execute on your plan, reward yourself. It’s how the brain knows that you did something good.

Whenever I finish one of my habits for the day, I open my tracker (who am I kidding, I always keep it open on my desktop) and fill it with a number. As soon as I finish reading 20 pages of a book a day (or a bit more), I open the tracker and write the number down.

The cell becomes green and gives me an instant boost of endorphin – a great success for the day. Then, it becomes all about not breaking the chain and having as many green fields as possible.

After 100 days, I crunch some numbers and see how I did.

If I have less than 10 cheat days, I reward myself with a great meal in a restaurant. You can create your own rewards and they can be daily, weekly, monthly or any arbitrary time table that you create.

Primoz Bozic, a productivity coach, has gold, silver, and bronze medals as his reward system.[4]

If you’re having problems creating a system which works for you, contact me via email and we can discuss specifics.

In the End, It Matters

What you do matters not only to you but to the people around you.

When you increase the quality of your life, you indirectly increase the quality of life of people around you. And sometimes, that is all the “motivation” we need to start.

And that’s the best quote for the end of this article:

“Motivation gets you started, but habits keep you going.”

Keep going.

Advertising

More Resources to Help You Build Habits

Featured photo credit: Anete Lūsiņa via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Sorites paradox
[2] Muscle Zone: What causes yo-yo effect and how to avoid it?
[3] Growth Habits: 5 Missteps That Cause You To Quit Building A Habit
[4] Primoz Bozic: The Lean Review: How to Plan Your 2019 in 20 Minutes

Read Next