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Published on October 9, 2019

7 Essential Success Tips to Achieve What You Want in Life

7 Essential Success Tips to Achieve What You Want in Life

Have you ever wondered what makes a person successful and why some achieve easier than others?

Over the years, I have followed numerous success tips to help me be and achieve the success that I craved. I thought I knew quite early what it took to be successful. But, the full realization came when I noticed that success is different for each of us. This is something that also changes as we grow and is about a lot more than just setting a goal.

As we become clear on our own definition of success, it changes how we view our lives. With this different insight, our goals can become more directive and our motivation and achievement levels increase.

The Business Dictionary says,[1]

“Success is the achievement of an action, completing an objective or reaching a goal.”

This is an interesting explanation, but it’s vague and it doesn’t really give you a true picture of what success is for you personally.

And if you move forward without this clarity, you could eventually achieve that objective or goal and feel anything but successful.

So, the first tip to becoming successful is to know what success means for you. When you have identified this, you will know what your objective or goal is and how to achieve it.

The second part to this is your mindset, because this also plays a key role. You have probably noticed that some people find it easier to reach their goals than you do. You are doing the same things, yet they achieve and you don’t. It can be frustrating and I get that. But frustration gets you nowhere and can in fact be the very thing that causes you to get in your own way. When you develop a success mindset, your thinking and emotions will support you. This means you will find it easier to achieve what you want.

Listed below you will find 7 secrets to developing a success mindset. Implementing these consistently will give you the greatest opportunity to achieve what you want in life.

1. Be Clear on Your Version of Success

Gaining clarity on this will affect your mindset positively. It is vital to being and feeling successful.

We all know on some level what success means to us. The thing is we normally know this on an unconscious level, and this can make it difficult to access our truth. This means we need to communicate with ourselves in a certain way to find those answers.

Find a quiet space and sit down with a journal and pen. Maybe even do some deep breathing or mediation to change your state.

When your mind feels still, ask yourself these questions and even write it down at the top of your page:

  • “What does success mean to me?”
  • “What does success look and feel like?”

And wait. Be patient and allow this to flow at it’s own pace.

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The answer may not come straight away and that is okay. Your own version of success is quite likely related to what is most important to you. It can be buried deep and this means it can take time to surface.

But once you have asked the question, you will eventually hear the response; sometimes when you least expect it.

2. Define an Irresistible Destination

This means “begin with the end in mind,” which is a quote by Stephen Covey — an incredibly successful educator, businessman, speaker and author of the best seller The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

It’s essential for your success that you begin with the end in mind. Because when you can see your outcome, the steps to achieve it become clear.

You possibly know that already, but there is even more to this.

Writing beige goals is one of the biggest mistakes I see people make when identifying their outcome. What I mean by this is a goal that’s dry and uninteresting with no juice in it. Just a big black dot point on a white page, or spreadsheet.

What’s juicy about that?

When you define your destination, it must be irresistible; because when it is, you will feel absolutely drawn to it. Just like that first juicy mango of the season in your local market, you can smell it and have to taste it.

Your goal must be juicy and written as if you are experiencing the moment right now. See what you are achieving in your mind’s eye and create a clear picture.

Close your eyes and imagine what you will be seeing around you. Notice what you will hear and how it will feel to achieve it.

Step into the picture and experience it as if it’s happening right now.

Open your eyes and write down what you saw, heard and felt. Give a date you achieved it. Writing it in present tense is vital here.

We achieve what we want twice, first in our mind’s eye and secondly in our physical reality. As you read and visualize your goals regularly you will give yourself maximum opportunity to achieve them.

3. Maintain Alignment with Your Goals and Visions

You’ve possibly heard reference made to the importance of alignment. But like I did for a number of years, you’re not really sure what it means.

Alignment is key in achieving success and it’s about aligning your goals with what is important to you. This means your goals must run parallel with your values and your version of success.

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Your values are powerful core motivators and if you write goals out of alignment, then you can often get in your own way.

For instance, you may set a goal to grow your business and this means you will spend more time in your business than usual. Spending quality time with your family may be of utmost importance to you. But, working on this goal will mean you have less time with your family.

If you don’t bring this into alignment by adjusting the goal in some way, your energy will dilute from trying to do everything. Or you will miss your family and resent your business. In both of these instances, your low energy or resentment could cause you to miss your target.

Alignment is a crucial step that can’t be skipped. When you set your goals, spend some time exploring how they align with your values and what is important to you. And more importantly, notice where they don’t align.

Where you notice a misalignment, adjust your goal in some way. In the example above, this may mean adjusting the deadline. Or you could involve your family in the achievement of the goal, like a holiday away.

Take focused time to do an alignment check each time you set a goal. It is worth the time and energy invested for the positive outcomes achieved.

4. Massive Action Is Not Always the Most Effective Way for Success

Contrary to the popular belief that “massive action” brings success faster. I believe one of the key tips for success is our willingness to take aligned sustainable action instead.

Success is achieved by stepping out of your comfort zone, but not always by taking massive leaps. For some, this can feel overwhelming because of everything else they value in life.

So you either put it off or do it ineffectively.

For example, say you want to increase your client base by 10% and start networking. After your 6th networking event that fortnight you end up exhausted and annoyed, because you haven’t had time for anything else. Plus you haven’t found the extra clients you wanted. You’ve missed exercising and doing stuff with friends. Your energy became low after about the 4th event and this all affected how you showed up.

In this example, “massive” action didn’t work because your actions were not fully aligned with your values or even your goals.

You don’t have to do everything at once and achieve your goal at the same time. It’s the fastest way to burn out, which was the turning point in my own success journey. It’s unsustainable!

You will gain greater benefit by breaking your actions down into smaller chunks.

Identify which actions are most aligned with your goals and then prioritize them into smaller steps. This way, you can still align with your values and have time for what is important to you.

So in the example above, maybe identify which networking events you are most likely to find your ideal client and attend two to three each fortnight. As you take action in this way, it maintains your energy and allows you to show up effectively. And you may be pleasantly surprised to find that instead of slowing your achievement down, it actually speeds it up, while you do less.

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5. Reflect and Readjust Without Beating Yourself Up

Reflection is one of the most crucial success tips. Yet, it is one of the key components that is often forgotten in an effort to rush to the finishing line.

Two of the fundamental NLP principles of success are to have sensory awareness and behavioural flexibility.[2] This means for each action we take, we must maintain awareness of whether it worked. And then be prepared to change what we do as much as it takes to achieve the outcome we want. Reflection helps you do this well.

However, fear of failure or fear of missing out leads people to omit this all-important process. In rushing to the next thing, we can often miss that one essential tweak that can make the difference.

It’s crazy to keep going blindly full steam ahead without pausing for a progress check. After all, we wouldn’t even dream of taking a right turn without first looking in our rear view mirror. Just a quick look enables us to see if we need to make a speed adjustment or take the next turn instead.

It’s also important to be kind to yourself when you reflect. Beating yourself up does no good at all. In fact, it lowers your motivation and makes it difficult for you to work to your full potential. This is the space of blame and self judgment.It keeps you stuck, and unable to see the changes you could make.

Reflection needs to be done from a place of non-judgment, where you give yourself positive and constructive feedback at regular intervals. Depending on the activity that could be weekly, monthly or quarterly.

There is always something you have achieved; acknowledge yourself for that. Look for lessons and things you can change.

When you reflect in this way frequently, you can save massive amounts of time and achieve things faster. This crucial step will also assist you to retain an empowered mindset and stay motivated to achieve what you want.

6. Persistence and Determination Are Key Requirements

Your attitude is a key player in your success levels.

If you give up easily, then you will find it increasingly difficult to achieve the life you want. But developing a persistent can do attitude will give you a boost to eventually find your way through to the finishing line.

This isn’t about doing everything or persisting at something for too long that isn’t working. Persistence and determination means being like a dog with a bone. You keep chewing away at it, adjusting your chewing technique until your outcome is accomplished.

True success takes time and requires a certain type of attitude. If you see someone achieve success overnight, they are normally the exception to the rule. It takes learning and practice, and can sometimes take years.

Think about how a farmer reaps his crop. These amazing people live a life that is not for the faint hearted, yet they still keep going. It takes a whole year of seasons to enjoy the benefits of their hard work. If their crop is hit by a storm or natural disaster, they don’t give up. They do what it takes and eventually enjoy their harvest, even if it takes another year or two.

Be like a farmer, stay persistent and determined to do whatever it takes. If it doesn’t work, then find another way. There is always a way to achieve what you want.

As you practice this more, rebooting your determination daily, you will feel successful in yourself. And you will feel this empowerment even before you reach your target.

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7. Take Good Care of Your Mind and Body

What we do with our body and our mind has a dramatic impact on how successful we are.

Anthony Robbins says we must adopt a physiology and psychology of excellence, which is the fifth success principle of NLP. But what does that really mean?

Over the years, I have found out the hard way that our mind can impact our physical health. Even more so our day-to-day behavior.

The reverse is also true. Our body has an enormous effect on our emotional state, which also affects how we show up.

Both of these key elements can affect our results. If we feel low in energy or view an experience in a negative way, we will show up in a less than desired way.

For example, you attend a luncheon feeling tired because you haven’t been looking after yourself. No one speaks to you and you lose confidence because you feel like you don’t fit in. This will affect your facial expression and your posture. People may even avoid you because you possibly look unapproachable. Because of this, you don’t go again and lose the opportunity to meet new clients.

On the other hand, if you were feeling energized, you would find it easier to look at the positive side. You might realize those who feel out of place themselves, so you go and speak to them. And possibly even find a new client. By adjusting your psychology in the moment, you changed the outcome and your energy played a key role in this.

Because of this connection, it’s essential to care for your mind and body, and just as importantly your spirit. As you do this regularly, you will find it easier to see the positive side of all situations.

You can do this by creating a wellness routine; preferably in the morning before your day starts. Include a form of exercise you love. A healthy diet and drinking plenty of water also plays an important role. Meditation and any form of spiritual practice like a gratitude journal, yoga, TaiChi and QuiGong will care for your mind and spirit. Spending time in nature or walking outdoors is wonderful for uplifting your state and helping you feel calm.

As you continue to nurture your mind, body and spirit, you will notice that you handle everyday situations in a different way. Your performance will excel and you will experience more successful outcomes.

Bottom Line

There are numerous success tips and here, I have named 7 of the most impactful. It’s not about following every tip you find; it’s about which you choose and consistently implementing them.

As you get clear on your own definition of success, you will begin to know what is important to you. This will give you a solid foundation to develop your own mindset and achieve what you want in life.

More About Success

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Business Dictionary: Success
[2] NLPAcademy.co.uk: Getting clarity in the uncertainty of life

More by this author

Deb Johnstone

Deb is a professional mindset speaker and a transformational life, business and career coach. Specialising in NLP and dynamic mindset.

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Last Updated on September 24, 2020

How to Take Advantage of the 80 20 Rule to Succeed in Life

How to Take Advantage of the 80 20 Rule to Succeed in Life

The world of productivity has several hacks or tricks to help you manage your time: to-do lists, the Pomodoro Technique, Parkinson’s Law… All of these strategies are great strategies in their own way, but one strategy stands above all the others: the 80 20 rule.

This particular strategy has been used the most and is regarded as the most helpful in developing time management and other concepts in life.

But what’s so special about this rule? How does it give you success and how do you use it? Let’s explore the specifics.

What Is the 80 20 Rule?

Many people regard this rule as the 80 20 rule, but it has a proper name: the Pareto Principle[1]. The principle was named after its founder,  the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, in 1895. Pareto noticed that people in society were divided into two categories:

  • The “vital few,” which consisted of the top 20 percent with respect to money and influence.
  • The “trivial many,” otherwise known as the bottom 80 percent.

As he researched this further, he came to discover that this divide didn’t apply only to money and influence, but other areas, too. Virtually all economic activity was subject to his previous observation.

He observed that 80% of Italy’s wealth at the time was controlled by only 20% of the population.

Since the development of this rule, humankind has used this particular ratio in all kinds of situations. Even if the ratio isn’t always exact, we see this rule applied in many industries and in life. Examples are:

  • 20% of sales reps will generate 80% of your total sales.
  • 20% of customers account for 80% of total profits.
  • 80% of the revenue will stem from 20% of the workers.

Either way, I’m sure you can piece together why people call this rule the 80 20 rule over Pareto’s Principle[2].

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Make Your Life and Your Business More Efficient with the 80-20 Rule - Salesforce Canada Blog

    In terms of how this particular rule will be able to work for you, it’s a matter of applying this rule to how you spend your time. For us to see success, the goal is simple.

    We need to set it up in such a way that 20% of our input is responsible for 80% of our results.

    Another way to think about it is we use 20% of our time on activities that give us 80% of our results in a given area of life.

    How Does the 80 20 Rule Work?

    To best explain this, let’s visualize a bit.

    In an ideal world:

    • Every employee would contribute the same amount of effort to work.
    • Every feature that’s released for an app or product would be equally loved by users.
    • Each business idea you come up with would be a hit.

    In that scenario, planning would be a breeze. There wouldn’t be any need to analyze anything so long as you put in the effort.

    But that’s not reality.

    Yes, the effort is certainly an element, but what the 80 20 principle states is that everything is unequal. Invest in 10 start-up companies, and you’ll find only a few will pass year two and make it big. You’re in a team of five, and there’ll be one person doing more work than others.

    We wish our lives were always one-for-one in terms of input and output, but that’s simply not true. Understanding this is key to understanding how the 80 20 rule really works.

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    So how does it really work?

    It’s a matter of focusing on what’s giving you the most in your life for little of your time.

    Going back to the few examples I’ve presented above, consider this:

    • If two start-ups you invested in are making it big, focus on having a more direct hand, and see if you can help them prosper more.
    • If 20% of sales reps are giving you 80% of your sales, focus on rewarding those and keeping their spirits high and motivated.

    These scenarios can go on and on, but the idea is to place your efforts on the 20% that is actually making the difference in your life. Another term that’s good to know is the diminishing marginal utility[3].

    Pareto didn’t come up with this one, but the law goes as follows: each extra hour of effort or worker will add less “oomph” to your finished results.

    Eventually, you’ll hit a point where you will spend a lot of time on small and unimportant details, similar to perfectionism.

    So before hitting that point, you want to have a laser focus on the most important details, from family and relationships to your work or business. Prioritize the activities that are going to move you forward the most, and be wary of adding extra time, effort, or more hands into those particular tasks moving forward.

    How to Take Advantage of the 80 20 Rule

    So now that you have an understanding of the 80 20 rule and how it works, what is the best way to take advantage of it?

    Depending on where you are applying this rule, this can be used in all kinds of fashions.

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    For example, you can apply this rule to goal setting, as demonstrated by Brian Tracy in this video:

    Or you can apply it in terms of general productivity as explained in this article: What Is the 80 20 Rule (And How to Use It to Boost Productivity)

    The core of this rule is that it forces us to ask ourselves the questions we wouldn’t consider otherwise. It helps us to place our focus in the right places with regards to all things in life.

    In short, the 80 20 rule places us in charge of our lives and helps us set out on our goals and dreams. With this in mind, here are some things you can consider concerning this rule.

    1. Focus on Your Big Tasks First

    While this is the essence of the 80 20 rule, it’s still worth mentioning. Why? Because so many of us feel intimidated by the biggest task. We instinctively avoid it and opt for smaller tasks first.

    We think that if we complete enough small tasks that we will feel motivated to finish that really big one later. But that’s really false hope at work.

    Once we finish off a lot of small tasks, we either feel drained, or we tell ourselves we’ll do this the next day.

    Instead of doing all that, bite the bullet and tackle the largest task first.

    If you need help with prioritization, check out this article.

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    I argue this by challenging you to ask yourself this one question:

    “Is the task I’m about to do the top 20 percent of my activities or the bottom 80 percent?”

    I’m sure you’ve seen time and again you or other workers spending a lot of time on one task for most of the day. In those kinds of grinds, you’re barely getting ahead and have next to nothing to show for it. That’s because they’re putting all their attention on work that’s in the 80 percent.

    It’s normally the big tasks that are part of the 20 percent.

    Another way to think about this is that everything we do starts a habit. If every day we spend our energy on low-value tasks, we will always prioritize those.

    2. Stretch This Into Personal Life

    While I’ve been talking about business and setting goals, remember you can use this in other areas of your life, too.

    Take your personal life and ask yourself some of these questions:

    • How much TV do you watch on a regular basis? What sort of shows are you legitimately into? These questions can help you in recognizing what shows you are watching purely for consumption. By applying the 80 20 rule, you can cut back on Netflix, TV, or YouTube video consumption and prioritize other areas of your life.
    • What does your wardrobe look like in terms of colors? Are there specific colors that you like? Knowing what you wear most times will help you in sorting out your wardrobe significantly. It also saves you time to come up with what to wear every morning.
    • How many newsletters do you actually read? This question can help you in figuring out which newsletters to unsubscribe to and can clear up a lot of space in your inbox. It can also relieve pressure from having to check your emails constantly.
    • How much time do you spend on your phone every day? How much of that time is actually doing something meaningful? These questions can help you in clearing out various apps that aren’t helping you with your goals. In fact, this can curb the need to check your phone constantly.

    Final Thoughts

    The 80 20 rule is the productivity hack that many of us need, and for good reason. As you can tell, it’ll help you to focus and prioritize the more important aspects of your life.

    Not only that, but it’ll maximize those outputs at the same time and ensure you’re not spending too much time working on them. All you need to do is start asking questions and taking action.

    More Techniques to Help You Succeed in Life

    Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

    Reference

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