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7 Bad Habits That Are Ruining Our Ability To Succeed And How To Break Them

7 Bad Habits That Are Ruining Our Ability To Succeed And How To Break Them

One can say a lot of good things about the society we live in. Technology has made the world considerably smaller and has brought people together like never before. Business is no longer considered something we look for, but something we actively do and something people more easily and readily attain. Life is becoming faster and edgier. But, are we losing something in the process of all of the good things?

In my opinion, we are losing too many things to count.

The relentless pace we all live by and the constant struggle to reach new milestones, consume more information, and unlock new doors behind the elusive title of an “accomplished individual” is leaving us with some pretty bad habits.

To make matters worse, these habits impede on our professionalism, are bad for our health, and place conflict on our social modus operandi. They strike to our very core and undermine the foundations of everything we are trying to achieve, pushing our sense of accomplishment further and further away.

This vicious cycle needs to be broken. Here are some of the most poisonous habits of the modern man and woman and how to avoid them.

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1. Poor Nutrition

    Healthy nutrition has to be one of the most obvious victims of the modern lifestyle. On-the-go snacks are numbing our satisfaction signals and loosening our ties with the sense of genuine hunger. Fast food floods your body with unhealthy ingredients like trans fats. Skipping breakfast keeps your metabolism drowsy and deprives you of valuable energy.

    In order to avoid these unpleasant outcomes, kick off your day with an energetic breakfast and replace all the junk food you are eating throughout the day with some healthier alternatives. Also, do your best to eat only when your body is physically craving for food and not as a coping mechanism when you are feeling stressed, angry, or you simply don’t know what else to do.

    2. “I Want It All And I Want It Now”

      I’m a man with a one-track mind, so much to do in one lifetime…” The thing that the singer of this song didn’t quite understand is that any kind of success requires patience. Sure, patience requires time and time is something we all feel evades us, but there’s simply no other way around time and acquiring the things that you want. Patience is key.

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      Overly enthusiastic gym newbies end up with injuries. Businesses that bite off more than they can chew crash and burn. Such experiences make each new beginning much harder than it is supposed to be. What you have to do is to stop looking for instant success and find your way to the top one step at a time. Make small gains towards your goals and make them every day.

      3. Sloppiness

        Who knows? Maybe the laid-back attitude of the internet billionaires forever eclipsed the image of what success and wealth looks like. Be that as it may, neat, organized, and well-dressed people have always been taken more seriously and have earned more respect than the people who approach their work with a more lackadaisically. Dress for the job you want, not the one you have, remember?

        So, what should you do instead? Pay attention to your looks and the way you’re dressing. Don’t leave a mess in the office. Mold yourself into the person you’re trying to be by investing in your wardrobe. Maintain a workspace that represents your organization and capabilities of a great employee by having an office or cubicle that exudes the boss status you someday hope to have. In short, make looking good and being tidy a part of your daily routine.

        4. Sedentary Lifestyle

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          Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu alone pack more quality content than we’ll ever have time to check. And what about the countless hours we spend in front of our office desks or browsing the web? According to Tom Cove, CEO of the Sports and Fitness Industry Association, “the high rate of inactivity is fundamentally alarming.” It looks like binge-watching is rapidly becoming the new smoking.

          Fortunately, the solution to this problem is not that hard to figure out – start exercising. Various HIIT routines and 7-minute workouts provide more than satisfying results for the time invested. If you are more ambitious, you can sign up for yoga lessons or join a local gym. Make the 2/30 rule (30 minutes of exercise for every 2 hours of TV) the core of your daily routine.

          5. Cigarettes, Painkillers, and Alcohol

            Modern lifestyle is more than stressful, so it’s okay to look for a way to relieve that stress. Now, as far as human pleasures go, everything comes with a certain price. What makes cigarettes, alcohol, painkillers, sedatives, and other common substances we use to fight stress undesirable, is that their price is often too steep for us to pay.

            Physical activity, on the other hand, promotes the production of neurohormones, like norepinephrine, which reverse the damage inflicted to your brain by stressful events. As a result, exercising elevates your mood, improves cognitive functions, and allows easier absorption of information. Alternatively, you can cope with stress by learning the art of meditation. Unlike relying on substances and unhealthy habits, both of these methods will reward you with a number of long-term benefits.

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            6. Excessive Buying

              Shopping has always been a proven method for putting a smile back on your face and there’s really nothing wrong with indulging yourself from time to time. The problem, however, arises when indulging becomes a habit and the things that are your priorities begin to suffer as a result.

              Unfortunately, this habit can be reversed only through restraint, objectivity, and a lot of self-criticism. You can decrease your urge to spend by weening yourself off of excessive spending habits versus quitting cold turkey. Put yourself on a rewards system where tackling a priority is rewarded with buying a nice item or two for yourself every couple of weeks – as long as it doesn’t break bank. Basic budgeting and personal financing skills won’t hurt you either.

              7. Winning Mentality

                The world we live in is a world of climbers and the people who succeed have to have “winning” carved into their brains. What we often fail to understand is that climbing doesn’t have to mean pushing the others below or beneath you in order to get to the top. While such behavior can be tolerated in the business environment, practicing it in your social life can have devastating results.

                Personal relationships have no room for winners and losers. Trying to put down everyone around you to look good can only earn you a bad reputation and cause you to lose important relationships. People are much more appreciative of individuals who make them feel good, offer help, and elevate themselves by elevating others. So keep your “shark attitude” for the corporate situations.

                Everyone has innate desires to feel successful and accomplished. What makes the people with those qualities the way they are is the fact that they don’t put too much effort into habits that bring them down. So let’s follow suit in our efforts in creating a successful life and make the foundation for something better. It’s as easy as changing few bad habits.

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                Dejan Kvrgic

                Blogger, Writer

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                Last Updated on November 5, 2019

                How to Cultivate Continuous Learning to Stay Competitive

                How to Cultivate Continuous Learning to Stay Competitive

                Assuming the public school system didn’t crush your soul, learning is a great activity. It expands your viewpoint. It gives you new knowledge you can use to improve your life. It is important for your personal growth. Even if you discount the worldly benefits, the act of learning can be a source of enjoyment.

                “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” — Mark Twain

                But in a busy world, it can often be hard to fit in time to learn anything that isn’t essential. The only things learned are those that need to be. Everything beyond that is considered frivolous. Even those who do appreciate the practice of lifelong learning, can find it difficult to make the effort.

                Here are some tips for installing the habit of continuous learning:

                1. Always Have a Book

                It doesn’t matter if it takes you a year or a week to read a book. Always strive to have a book that you are reading through, and take it with you so you can read it when you have time.

                Just by shaving off a few minutes in-between activities in my day I can read about a book per week. That’s at least fifty each year.

                2. Keep a “To-Learn” List

                We all have to-do lists. These are the tasks we need to accomplish. Try to also have a “to-learn” list. On it you can write ideas for new areas of study.

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                Maybe you would like to take up a new language, learn a skill or read the collective works of Shakespeare. Whatever motivates you, write it down.

                3. Get More Intellectual Friends

                Start spending more time with people who think. Not just people who are smart, but people who actually invest much of their time in learning new skills. Their habits will rub off on you.

                Even better, they will probably share some of their knowledge with you.

                4. Guided Thinking

                Albert Einstein once said,

                “Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.”

                Simply studying the wisdom of others isn’t enough, you have to think through ideas yourself. Spend time journaling, meditating or contemplating over ideas you have learned.

                5. Put it Into Practice

                Skill based learning is useless if it isn’t applied. Reading a book on C++ isn’t the same thing as writing a program. Studying painting isn’t the same as picking up a brush.

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                If your knowledge can be applied, put it into practice.

                In this information age, we’re all exposed to a lot of information, it’s important to re-learn how to learn so as to put the knowledge into practice.

                6. Teach Others

                You learn what you teach. If you have an outlet of communicating ideas to others, you are more likely to solidify that learning.

                Start a blog, mentor someone or even discuss ideas with a friend.

                7. Clean Your Input

                Some forms of learning are easy to digest, but often lack substance.

                I make a point of regularly cleaning out my feed reader for blogs I subscribe to. Great blogs can be a powerful source of new ideas. But every few months, I realize I’m collecting posts from blogs that I am simply skimming.

                Every few months, purify your input to save time and focus on what counts.

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                8. Learn in Groups

                Lifelong learning doesn’t mean condemning yourself to a stack of dusty textbooks. Join organizations that teach skills.

                Workshops and group learning events can make educating yourself a fun, social experience.

                9. Unlearn Assumptions

                You can’t add water to a full cup. I always try to maintain a distance away from any idea. Too many convictions simply mean too few paths for new ideas.

                Actively seek out information that contradicts your worldview.

                Our minds can’t be trusted, but this is what we can do about it to be wiser.

                10. Find Jobs that Encourage Learning

                Pick a career that encourages continual learning. If you are in a job that doesn’t have much intellectual freedom, consider switching to one that does.

                Don’t spend forty hours of your week in a job that doesn’t challenge you.

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                11. Start a Project

                Set out to do something you don’t know how. Forced learning in this way can be fun and challenging.

                If you don’t know anything about computers, try building one. If you consider yourself a horrible artist, try a painting.

                12. Follow Your Intuition

                Lifelong learning is like wandering through the wilderness. You can’t be sure what to expect and there isn’t always an end goal in mind.

                Letting your intuition guide you can make self-education more enjoyable. Most of our lives have been broken down to completely logical decisions, that making choices on a whim has been stamped out.

                13. The Morning Fifteen

                Productive people always wake up early. Use the first fifteen minutes of your morning as a period for education.

                If you find yourself too groggy, you might want to wait a short time. Just don’t put it off later in the day where urgent activities will push it out of the way.

                14. Reap the Rewards

                Learn information you can use. Understanding the basics of programming allows me to handle projects that other people would require outside help. Meeting a situation that makes use of your educational efforts can be a source of pride.

                15. Make Learning a Priority

                Few external forces are going to persuade you to learn. The desire has to come from within. Once you decide you want to make lifelong learning a habit, it is up to you to make it a priority in your life.

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                Featured photo credit: Paul Schafer via unsplash.com

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