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The 5 Things That Are Holding You Back From Achieving Success

The 5 Things That Are Holding You Back From Achieving Success

Do you ever wonder what drives successful people? Are you a part of the growing congregation of the complacent and seemingly disenfranchised? Does failure seem imminent? Do you allow it to prevent you from ever attempting anything, to begin with? If you find yourself barraged with these types of questions, rest assured that you are not alone.

The matter at hand is not to focus on your own minds – hypothetical pandering to doubt or fear – the matter is success. The first step in achieving or even overachieving is to understand that strict focus on your goal should be maintained. If we readjust our perspective and how we view success – we may very well find that all the pieces to make it happen, have been with us all along.

More often than not, we are the orchestrators of our own obstacles. This isn’t to say that uncontrollable (financial, familial, medical, social, educational, etc ) antagonizing factors don’t exist. Rather the opposite. If we put aside the obvious outliers, most of us can apply the following five ideas to our lives – and be closer to success with each adjustment.

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1. Space

Your surroundings have an enormous effect on physical and mental well-being. Though this may go unnoticed, if you truly ask yourself -“Am I happy in my surroundings? Am I on the path to succeed?” – you’ll find that these questions usually have correlating answers.

By placing ourselves in an enjoyable environment where we can be free, feel loved, and be at ease –  we activate the pleasure center of our brain. Once your brain releases dopamine, (which also stimulates positive emotion) we become chemically more willing and capable of chasing our goals. If you’re unhappy with your living situation, as well as find yourself in a rut – you may benefit from a vacation or a full relocation.

2. People

Similar to the effect that your surroundings have on you, the people that you come into frequent contact with (co-workers, social circles, family.), have an effect on you as well. Even the most strong-willed of us – have felt the perilous emptiness that comes with negativity. It may seem like an old trope, but it is true that we become what we surround ourselves with.

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If you’re consistently around negative, doubtful, or otherwise unhappy people – soon enough you will become them. With that transformation, you’ll begin to absorb their poor habits and failing attitude into your own personality. This isn’t to say that you must cut them off, simply inform them – that if they persist in their ways – that you must cease to be around them. Success is a door that remains closed to disbelievers and their following.

3. Attitude

Your own attitude toward success may be one of the major deciding factors of whether or not you fail. Ironically enough, it is also one of the few things involved that’s completely under your control. Our attitude toward success is vital. If we view it with disdain -for its’ apparent elusiveness- we will never have it.

Just as you must separate yourself from the negative people and places – you must also purge yourself of any negative feelings. This isn’t to imply that you should be delusional. But at the end of each day, you should be excited about the opportunities that may present themselves in the day to come. You should be enthusiastic in every endeavor that brings you one step closer to achievement. Not only will your enthusiasm shine through any negativity, but it will attract like-minded positive people.

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4. Conviction

As with anything worth having in life, the proper mental state, space, and social circles – mean nothing without action. Chasing your goals can be a trite if you allow it to be. However, a sure way to never achieve it- is by ruminating in defeat and failure instead of taking steps to make the most of the situation, and continue forward. Those fleeting moments of helplessness that you feel are no more than barriers that hold you back from taking the action that is required – for the task that you must achieve. The reason that most people fail is because they lack the conviction to see their goals through. Regardless of where this lack of commitment derives from – those in that particular group are doomed to the same fate as all other inactive persons and pessimists.

In Napoleon Hill’s revered book The Law of Success, he wraps this point up thusly so – “As a matter of facts imaginations and purposes cannot yield anything unless action is taken to realize the purpose. Actions prove the practicability of our imaginations.”

5. Fear

Quite possibly the most familiar and common preventer of success. We’ve all struggled with it at one point or another. We fear failure, criticism, judgment, rejection, etc. These are all valid fears, but none of them should stand between you and your goals, and it’s a gamble to attempt to harness them as a way to achieve success. If you’re willing to put in the time and the effort, you’ll find that those irrational fears melt away. The best way to combat fear is by taking action in the face of it. Soon enough you will see how ridiculous that fear was and will be one step closer to what you want.

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The Conclusion:

If we apply these principles to ourselves, our lives, and our surroundings – we will open the door to opportunity, and be will on our way to achieving goals one day at a time. If we don’t slip on the way up the mountain, and we never waiver in our belief – success will become inevitable. If you start now it will happen sooner than if you start tomorrow.

Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

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Antwan Crump

Novelist, blogger, essayist, podcaster.

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Last Updated on October 22, 2018

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

Do you think of yourself as a creative person? Do you play the drums or do watercolor paintings? Perhaps compose songs or direct plays? Can you even relate to any of these so called ‘creative’ experiences?

Growing up, did you ever have that ‘artistic’ sibling or friend who excelled in drawing, playing instruments or literature? And you maybe wondered why you can’t even compose a birthday card greeting–or that drawing stick figures is the furthest you’ll ever get to drawing a family portrait.

Many people have this common assumption that creativity is an inborn talent; only a special group of people are inherently creative, and everyone else just unfortunately does not have that special ability. You either have that creative flair or instinct, or you don’t. But, this is far from the truth!

So what is creativity?

Everyone Can Be Creative!

The fact is, that everyone has an innate creative ability. Despite what most people may think, creativity is a skill that everyone can learn and hone on. It’s a skill with huge leverage that allows you to generate enormous amounts of value from relatively little input. How is that so?

You’ll have to start by expanding your definition of creativity. Ironically, you have to be creative and ‘think out of the box’ with the definition! Creativity at its heart, is being able to see things in a way that others cannot. It’s a skill that helps you find new perspectives to create new possibilities and solutions to different problems.

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So, if you encounter different challenges and problems that need solving on a regular basis, then creativity is an invaluable skill to have.

Let’s say, for example, that you work in sales. Having creativity will help you to look for new ways to approach and reach out to potential customers. Or perhaps you’re a teacher. In this role you have to constantly look for new ways to deliver your message and educate your students.

How Creativity Really Works

Let me break another misconception about creativity, which is that it’s only used to create completely “new” or “original” things. Again, this is far from the truth. Because nothing is ever completely new or original.

Everything, including works of art, doesn’t come from nothing. Everything derives from some sort of inspiration. That means that creativity works by connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value.

From this perspective, you can see a lot of creativity in action. In technology, Apple combines traditional computers with design and aesthetics to create new ways to use digital products. In music, a musician may be inspired by various styles of music, instruments and rhythms to create an entirely new type of song.

All of these examples are about connecting different ideas, finding common ground amongst the differences, and creating a completely new idea out of them.

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Creativity Needs an Intention

Another misconception about the creative process is that you can just be in a general “creative” state.

Real creativity isn’t about coming up with “eureka!” moments for random ideas. Instead, to be truly creative, you need to have a direction. You have to ask yourself this question:

“What problem am I trying to solve?”

Only by knowing the answer to this question can you start flexing your creativity muscles.

Often times, the idea of creativity is associated with the ‘Right’ brain, with intuition and imagination. Hence a lot of focus is placed on the ‘Right’ brain when it comes to creativity.

But, to get the most out of creativity, you need to utilize both sides of your brain–Right and Left–which means using the analytical and logical part of your brain, too.

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This may sound surprising to you, but creativity has a lot to do with problem solving. And, problem solving inherently involves logic and analysis. So instead of throwing out the ‘Left’ brain, full creativity needs them to work in unison.

For example, when you’re looking for new ideas, your ‘Left’ brain will guide you to a place of focus, which is based on your objective behind the ideas you’re searching for. The ‘Right’ brain then guides you to gather and explore based on your current focus.

And when you decide to try out these new ideas, your ‘Right’ brain will give you novel solutions outside of the ones you already know. Your ‘Left’ brain then helps you evaluate and tune the solutions to work better in practice. So, logic and creativity actually work hand in hand, and not one at the expense of the other.

Creativity is a Skill

At the end of the day, creativity is a skill. It’s not some innate or natural born talent that some have over others. What this means is that creativity and innovation can be practiced and improved upon systematically.

A skill can be learned and practiced by applying your strongest learning styles. Want to know what your learning style is? Try this test.

A skill can be measured and improved through a Feedback Loop, and can be continuously upgraded over time by regular practice. Through regular practice, your creativity goes through different stages of proficiency. This means that you can become more and more creative!

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If you never thought that creativity was relevant to you, or that you don’t have a knack for being creative… think again! You can use creativity in any aspect of your life. In fact you should use it, as it will allow you to to break through your usual loop, get you out of your comfort zone, and inspire you to grow and try new things.

Creativity will definitely give you an edge when you’re trying to solve a problem or come up with new solutions.

Start Connecting the Dots!

Excited to start honing your creativity? Here at Lifehack, we’ve got a wealth of knowledge to help you get started. We understand that creativity is a matter of connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value.

So, if you want to learn how to start connecting the dots, simply subscribe to our newsletter today. In it, you’ll find out how to make use of crucial skills that will push you towards a total life transformation– one that you never thought possible. Your personal growth is our commitment. So don’t hold back, unleash your creativity today!

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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