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Last Updated on December 14, 2020

Pave Your Road to Success with These 7 Golden Rules

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Pave Your Road to Success with These 7 Golden Rules

At some point in our lives, we’ll question whether we are successful. But what is success, and can you really pave the road to success without knowing what you’re striving for?

The reality is, success means different things to different people. For many, it’s financial wealth and freedom. As an entrepreneur, I’m able to choose where and when I work as well as whom I work with—that’s what’s really important to me. But to others, success might be working in a career that brings joy, ensures the bills are paid, and guarantees security.

It’s essential that you don’t compare where you are now to others because that’s not what success looks like. Think about this: You can be a multi-millionaire and miserable. If you’re working 16-hour a day, never see your family, and can’t remember what it feels like to take a vacation, are you really successful?

Personally, my road to success took too long. I spent way too many years trying to scale my first startup. I wasted thousands of dollars on advertising that didn’t connect with my audience. I spent many sleepless nights worrying about making payroll and keeping the lights on, and that negatively impacted my personal life and my health.

I don’t want this for you, and that’s why I’m going to share the 7 golden rules which I’ve found to be crucial in paving my road to success. Let’s dive in.

1. Change Your Mindset

Often what’s holding us back on our road to success has nothing to do with skillset or financial backing, and everything to do with mindset.

Take entrepreneurship, for example. The biggest barrier to success for most business owners is thinking you’re in the business of selling a service or product. You put all your energy into perfecting it, but if your prospect has never heard of you, why would they buy from you? Where’s the proof that what you’re offering is the gold standard?

You see, you’re not in the business of selling the thing you do, you’re in the business of marketing a service or product. You need to make this shift in your thinking if you want to be successful.

The same can be applied to professionals seeking a promotion or those who are looking to change jobs. What’s going to differentiate you from your competition? Why should you be hired? Don’t focus on your skills or how many years of experience you have. What have you achieved that would be attractive to another company?

In both instances, it’s about understanding what the pain points of your target market are, and how you can be the relief they’re searching for.

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So you have to change your mindset: How to Change Your Mindset for a Happy And Successful Life

2. Ask for Help

There is no shame in recognizing that you need help. The road to success is not meant to be lonely.

Unfortunately, school conditions us to work alone. We have to rely on our intellect to figure out a solution, and when we apply this thinking to a work scenario, well, that’s when we cease to achieve.

To be successful in business, you need to be able to rely on your colleagues or mentors to help you achieve your goals. A study by Olivet Nazarene University found that 76 percent of people who have mentors view those individuals as critical to their success in life.[1]

Mentors provide clarity and a roadmap to success. But, you need to find someone who’s right for you. This is a person who will challenge your ways of thinking. They’ll provide actionable advice and hold you accountable.

More importantly, they’ll celebrate your wins because they’re invested in your success. It’s a reflection of their mentorship.

So don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Take a look at this article if you’re still not sure how to ask for help: How to Ask for Help When You Feel Silly to Do So

3. Learn to Delegate

The world’s most successful people all have one thing in common: They recognize where their strength lies, and that’s where they focus their energies. Everything else gets delegated.

Richard Branson once said,

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“The art of delegation is one of the key skills that any entrepreneur must master.”

This couldn’t be more relevant to our lives than now. A report by Xero found that 77 percent of business owners experience burnout,[2] and Gallup’s 2018 report stated that 44 percent of employees feel burned out sometimes.[3]

How can you do what you do best when you’re physically and mentally at your worst?

Learning to let go is tough, but 80 percent out the drawer is better than 100 percent in the drawer. It takes a team to build a profitable business. Whether you’re the owner or an aspiring leader, you need to understand that your team will help you to achieve your goals far quicker than you could ever do on your own.

That’s why you need to surround yourself with people you trust, and those who can work autonomously.

Here’s a guide to help you learn how to delegate: How to Delegate Work Effectively (Step-By-Step Guide)

4. Embrace Failure

Don’t be fearful of making mistakes. The truth is, you will fail at some point on your road to success. In fact, you might fail many times. But failure is not an indicator of your capabilities, it’s just another learning experience.

No one likes to fail. But if we never experienced the lows that come with losing or making a mistake, would we really appreciate and celebrate our successes?

The most successful people are risk-takers, and with that, comes failure. But this doesn’t stop them from chasing their goals.

When things go wrong, don’t try to sweep it under the rug and act like it never happened. Ask questions and figure out what was missing and what you could’ve done differently. This type of thinking leads to success.

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So, embrace your mistakes. Own them, but more importantly, learn from them: 13 Reasons Why You Should Fail Fast to Learn Fast

5. Invest in Yourself

Always strive to be a better version of yourself. That’s why you should never stop learning.

Be tenacious. Say yes to opportunities that come your way, whether it’s a free online course, a networking event, a webinar, or a chance to engage with a well-known mentor, jump at these opportunities.

You’ll meet people who can help to further your career or grow your business. Remember, they’ve been where you are. Some have achieved success, and some are still on the road to success, but they can all help you.

Here’re some tips for you: How to Invest in Yourself: 3 Valuable Ways to Change Your Life

6. Formulate a Plan of Action

Now that you know what success looks like to you, how are you going to achieve it? What’s your plan of action?

Write it down. A study found that people who wrote down their goals were 33 percent more successful in achieving them.[4]

Once you’ve clearly defined what your roadmap to success looks like, put it up on your wall. Take a moment each day to review your goals and tick off those you’ve already achieved. This will help to motivate you and keep you committed to the dream.

Don’t be afraid to alter your plan. You may decide after a few months that your goals have changed. That’s okay. Just make sure that you adapt your plan to reflect these changes.

This is How to Create an Action Plan and Achieve Your Personal Goals.

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7. Never Give Up

How badly do you want it?

Yes, the road to success is paved with failure. You will experience setbacks. This is completely normal. If it were smooth sailing, everyone would be highly successful. And then, who would we have to aspire to be?

I’ve found that persistence and consistency are the keys to achieving success. I’ve watched brilliant individuals fail because they gave up too soon. I’ve also known people with little to no talent achieve massive success because they had grit. They were determined to make it work, and every setback was just another lesson on their path to success.

If you really want to be successful, then you need to be relentless in your pursuit of success. Celebrate every win. They all matter.

Learn more about how to stay motivated during difficult times here: Giving up Is Not an Option! How to Not Give up and Stay Motivated

The Bottom Line

You can’t begin to chart your road to success without knowing what it is you’re chasing. Define this first. Write it down and review it. Be clear about what you believe it will take to achieve your goals. Then ask yourself,

What am I capable of achieving on my own? Where do I need help? Am I willing to make sacrifices? Am I willing to fail? Do I need to invest in a mentorship program?

When you have clarity about where you’re going, and what you need to do to get there, you have a clear plan of action. Be consistent in taking actionable steps each day, and you will be well on your way to success.

More Tips About Achieving Success

Featured photo credit: Bruno Bergher via unsplash.com

Reference

More by this author

Allan Dib

Rebellious Marketer, Serial Entrepreneur, Business Coach, and #1 Bestselling Author

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Published on October 14, 2021

How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

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How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

Do you ever worry about being exposed as a “fraud?” You’re not alone. It’s actually quite common for people to feel like imposters. In fact, approximately 70 percent of people admit to having experienced impostor syndrome[1] at some point in their lives — a Twitter poll found that 87 percent of people have experienced this.[2] Even successful and famous people like Tom Hanks, Howard Schultz, and Natalie Portman suffer from imposter syndrome.

But, what exactly is imposter syndrome. And, more importantly, how can you silence it?

Originally coined in 1978 by psychologists Pauline Rose Clance, Ph.D., ABPP, and Suzanne Imes, Ph.D., the term “impostor syndrome” describes symptoms that include being unable to internalize accomplishments and being afraid of being exposed as a fraud.

The individual may also be plagued by chronic self-doubt and believe that they’re unqualified for success despite evidence to the contrary. Inadequacies, fears of failure, and disbelief that success is a matter of luck or timing are also common.

If you don’t address this phenomenon, feeling like an impostor can prevent you from achieving ambitious goals. Moreover, those experiencing these feelings tend to over-prepare or procrastinate — which obviously hinders productivity and reaching goals. And, as if that weren’t bad enough, imposter syndrome prevents you from pursuing new challenges and opportunities.

Do you feel like you’re suffering from impostor syndrome? If so, don’t beat yourself up. After all, there are effective ways to overcome these feelings in a healthy and proactive way.

1. Don’t Hide It.

“Firstly, acknowledge it,” advises Claudine Robson,[3] the Intentional Coach. “You give strength to imposter syndrome by letting it continue to peck away at your confidence unchecked.” It can only be banished if you acknowledge it as soon as possible and break the silence.

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“Then you need to separate your feelings from facts,” Robson adds. “One thing imposter syndrome does very effectively is to mix up your perceptions of reality.”

If you can, take a step back and look at the situation objectively. “Recognize when you should — and when you should not — feel fraudulent,” she says. Appreciate and acknowledge the task, intellect, and insight that have led to your success.

You might even be able to take action by recognizing that the reason you feel fraudulent is that you’re new to a task. “That gives you a path forward; learning is growth, don’t deny yourself that.”

2. Implement the STOP Technique

In her book Cognitive Enlightenment, Melinda Fouts, Ph.D., outlines a technique to overcome imposter syndrome using what she calls the STOP technique.

“STOP is an acronym for ‘silence the oppressive player,” Fouts explains in Forbes.[4] “You need to eradicate this tape that is playing 24/7, whether you are conscious of it or not. It plays loudest when we are tired, hungry, or feeling defeated.”

Steps to implementing the STOP technique and rewiring your brain are as follows:

To replace the tape of not good enough, you need a “launch sentence.” “I’m more than good enough” would is an example of a solid launch statement.

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Put your launch sentence in prominent locations, such as your car’s dashboard or computer. How come? The reason is that as the tape plays, you won’t be able to remember your launch statement.

Continue to say “stop” until you recall your launch sentence, says Fouts.

Put your launch sentence into your own words and pontificate.

While going about your daily tasks, like while driving or exercising, practice your launch sentence so you can recall it when you need it in the future.

“I am told this sounds simple and it does,” she adds. However, this technique is challenging when your negative tape is playing. You will not want to replace the tape every day while your brain is rewiring itself. “It is these moments you can’t give up.”

3. Distinguish Humility and Fear

When it comes to hard work and accomplishments, there’s humility, and then there’s fear. In other words, having a high level of competence can lead one to discount its value occasionally. However, as Carl Richards wrote in an article for the New York Times,[5] “After spending a lot of time fine-tuning our ability, isn’t it sort of the point for our skill to look and feel natural?”

The problem is that we feel unworthy from time to time. But, as Seth Godin explained in a blog post,[6] “When you feel unworthy, any kind response, positive feedback or reward feels like a trick, a scam, the luck of the draw.”

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Feeling worthy without feeling entitled is possible. And, finding the right balance between them is critical for overcoming impostor syndrome. “Humility and worthiness have nothing at all to do with defending our territory,” Godin continues. “We don’t have to feel like a fraud to also be gracious, open, or humble.”

4. Keep a “Brag Sheet”

When you were sending out college applications, did you build yourself a “brag sheet?” If not, here’s a clean description from Shawna Newman,[7] “A brag sheet is very similar to a student resume – it highlights your accomplishments, key experiences, leadership skills, and employment throughout your secondary education.” In short, “it’s a quick reference guide with all the details and achievements for someone trying to get to know you better.”

While it may be awkward at first, you can apply the same concept when coping with imposter syndrome. Just compose a list of your accomplishments, activities, skills. That’s it. Just remember Godin’s advice and also be humble and gracious.

As an added perk, besides being an effective way to talk myself up, I’ve also found that this has helped me stop comparing myself to others. Instead of harping about other people’s milestones, I’m honing in on what I’ve done.

5. Celebrate Wins, Period

Speaking of accomplishments, they shouldn’t be categorized as small or big. After all, you feel as if you don’t belong when you have imposter syndrome. So, the more you celebrate your wins, the more confident you’ll become.

Furthermore, accept compliments without qualifying them and practice listening to praise every day. Finally, become kinder to yourself by saying at least one kind thing to yourself daily. And, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back.

6. Assemble a Legion of Superheroes

“You know how corporations have a board of directors to — in theory — make them stronger, maintain checks and balances, leverage resources, and help advance the organization’s vision?” asks inspirational speaker, speaking coach, and creative consultant Tania Katan.[8] “Why not assemble your own board of directors to leverage resources to help make your career stronger, keep you in check and balanced, and advance your vision?”

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“My friend Alison Wade, president of conferences, training, and consulting at Techwell, calls her personal board of directors her “front-row” — those are the people she invites to sit spitting distance from the stage, cheer her on, challenge her, and review her performance,” Katan writes.

As for Katan, she calls hers a “legion of superheroes.” The reason? “I dig the idea of joining forces to do good in the corporate galaxy.”

It’s important to have a diverse group of individuals who will defend you. Ideally, they should be varied in all dimensions, such as cultural background, way of thinking, and skills.

Katan recommends that you meet together frequently, whether if that’s once a week or every quarter. “Share your experiences, fears, creative ideas, aspirations,” she adds. “Celebrate each other’s accomplishments.” You also need to both support and challenge each other. “Discover what you are capable of doing when you combine your powers.”

7. Visualize Success

Follow the example of a professional athlete by imagining yourself crushing that presentation or project. You’ll enjoy the relief from performance-related stress. And, more importantly, it can help you avoid focusing on the worst-case scenario.

Final Words of Advice

While there’s no single formula to cure imposter syndrome, the tips listed above are a start. After all, your success depends on your ability to fight the negative effects of it. For example, feeling unworthy over time can lead to crippling anxiety and depression if left untreated.

If you’ve tried the above, then make sure that you speak to someone about what you’re experiencing, whether it’s a mentor, peer group, or licensed professional. And, above all else, there’s a place at the table for everyone — no matter what your inner voice is telling you.

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How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome was originally published on Calendar by John Rampton.

Featured photo credit: Laurenz Kleinheider via unsplash.com

Reference

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