Advertising
Advertising

10 Things You Need To Start Doing If You Want To Be Successful

10 Things You Need To Start Doing If You Want To Be Successful

A fresh new year is a good way to revisit your dreams and goals and see what is missing for you to lead a more successful life. Take a moment to sit down and write what you want to achieve this year and what will make you feel good about yourself and your life. Here are 10 great tips that will help you become more successful this year in different areas of your life.

1. Take action

The first and most important step in making your dreams a reality is to take action. Stop overthinking things when it comes to how you are going to achieve your goals. Create a plan and start doing. Start where you are at the moment. Start with what you have now, and build up your skills and knowledge on the way. Opportunities and doors will open up when you start taking action towards the manifestation of your goals. If you fail, stand up and try again. Learn from your mistakes and move on. It might not happen immediately- it could take weeks, months or even years to get to your desired destination- but believe that you will eventually get there. The key here is to take action. Nothing will happen if you just sit, wait and complain about your circumstances. But, wonderful things, people, and opportunities can come into your life when you start doing. That is how you grow, develop and succeed as a human being.

Advertising

2. Exercise

In order for you to feel good and energetic every single day, you need to rethink your ways of taking care of your body. Are you exercising enough? When did you go for a long walk recently? Have you considered taking any yoga or Pilates classes? What kind of sport excites you in order to get your body moving? Asking yourself these questions will help you figure out what kind of exercises you can do in order to keep a healthy lifestyle. Take care of your health, body, and mind first if you want to achieve great things. You cannot be successful if you do not look after yourself first. When you look and feel good about yourself, that is when you will start seeing successful changes in your daily life.

3. Surround yourself with successful people

You are the average of your 5 closest friends. Think about the people you hang around the most. Do they make you more successful? Do they bring out the best in you and support you on your journey to success? Just being around positive, successful and open-minded people will make you feel that you can achieve anything in this life. So, go and find some great people to network with. Connect with more people who will be beneficial to you and bring excitement and enthusiasm in your life. If you want to be more successful at what you are doing, discover people in your industry or field of interest from whom you can learn important lessons. At the beginning, you can even start watching online videos and interviews of successful entrepreneurs and business owners.

Advertising

4. Read more

Do you want to know the shortcut to success? Read a book! Reading books has a lot of benefits, such as improving your memory and concentration, developing your mind and imagination and reducing your stress levels. But what is important here is that reading books will teach you ways of finding your dream career, ways of succeeding in different areas in your life, ways of becoming more productive, the marketing strategies you need to implement in order to grow your business, and so on. You need to ask yourself what you need to learn in order to succeed further. The list of books that can help you succeed is endless, and you can find books on pretty much every topic you are interested in.

5. Attend seminars and workshops

Attending seminars is another way to develop yourself further and improve your skills. It is also a great way to network and connect with people. Whether it is a business seminar or one focusing on personal life, it could benefit you greatly and help you learn new things that will help you to fulfill your goals and dreams. Specific seminars can improve your communication skills, boost your confidence when speaking in front of other people, or just help you become a better listener and start paying more attention to what others have to say.

Advertising

6. Take online courses

Online courses are another great way to learn new things and gain new skills in order to succeed in life. Whether you want to be more successful at cooking, time management, or accounting, just go on the internet and start doing your research today on available online courses. I recently took a Buddhism and Modern Psychology course on Coursera. While taking the course, I improved my writing skills by completing essay assignments, learned new theories and ideas, and networked with other people who were taking the same course. The good thing about Coursera is that most of the courses are free and very flexible- you just need to spend a few hours per week on the course. So, start doing your research today, and find some suitable courses that will take you one step closer to fulfilling your goals and ideas in life.

7. Invest time in yourself daily

Invest time in yourself every single day. It will pay off later. Do something every day that makes you jump out of bed. Try to have fun with yourself. Investing time in yourself could mean doing things such as taking out yourself on a date, having your favorite cup of coffee, exploring a new and exciting place near you, booking a performance to see, enjoying some outdoor music or cooking a new recipe. Finding some time for yourself daily will let you shape yourself into a more productive, successful and positive person.

Advertising

8. Work on your goals daily

Dreams will not work for you unless you do. If you want to start seeing positive outcomes and results in your life, you have to work on your goals every single day. Make a daily plan or to-do list, and break down the goals into daily activities. This will help you get things done much easier and faster, and you will feel that you have achieved something at the end of each day.

9. Be of service to others

Your purpose in life should align with helping and being of service to others. Your life can significantly change, from fear and sadness to joy and success, when you start doing things for others. The most successful people have figured it out- they have found ways, ideas, and products that are beneficial to people out there. And, they have turned these ideas and products into a business plan that allows other people to benefit from their creations. These successful people succeed because of the need for these products. Are you really good at something that could be very useful to other people? Ask yourself that daily, and you will soon start figuring out how your knowledge, skills and business ideas can benefit people out there.

10. Invest in your well-being and happiness

You will only start being successful in life when you find happiness in everything you do. You need to do everything with love and enthusiasm. That is the best way to invest in your well-being and happiness. Enjoy what you do, and choose goals that make you happy at the end of each day. If it does not bring you happiness, then why do you do it? You get to live only one life- enjoy it to the fullest!

Featured photo credit: Kirill Luzin / Dmitry Kolesnikov via Flickr via flickr.com

More by this author

Filiz Mehmedova

Writing Blogger

10 Things You Need To Start Doing If You Want To Be Successful 5 Ways To Improve The Relationship With Yourself 10 Evening Habits Of Highly Successful People 10 Benefits Of Travelling Alone 5 Good Reasons Why You Should Embrace A Healthy Lifestyle Today

Trending in Productivity

1 The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain) 2 What to Do When Bored at Work (And Why You Feel Bored Actually) 3 6 Effective Ways to Enhance Your Problem Solving Skills 4 How to Concentrate and Focus Better to Boost Productivity 5 15 Productive Things to Do When Bored (So Time Is Not Wasted)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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]

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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!

More About Goals Setting

Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next