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10 Things Successful People Do Differently

10 Things Successful People Do Differently

Bill Gates.

Oprah Winfrey.

Steve Jobs.

These names all come to mind when we think of successful people.

And even though all three are great examples of success, there are lots of other people who are successful in their own right, although we may not be as familiar with their names.

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But their habits? Well, that’s a different story. You see, successful people all do similar things. As Brian Tracy says, “Success leaves tracks.” It’s these “tracks,” the behaviors and habits, that set them apart from the ordinary folks who just work their 9-to-5 jobs, clocking in and out every day, never looking to get ahead.

If you want to be one of the greats, if you want to be a big success in life and leave ordinary behind, do these 10 things successful people do, and get ready for the big results that are sure to follow if you do them consistently.

1. They commit to their goals

When successful people set a goal, nothing gets in their way of achieving it. They commit 100 percent to the outcome, knowing that one difference between successful and unsuccessful people is that the successful ones commit to a goal and don’t stop until they achieve it.

2. And they persist until they achieve them

Obstacles to success are normal and should be expected. They can’t always be planned for. However, you can decide when you commit to success that you’re going to persist no matter what obstacles arise. Go around them, go over them, or push through them, but persist no matter what happens. That’s what successful people do, and so should you if you want to mimic their success.

3. They take responsibility

Successful people know that they are the masters of their own destiny. You don’t hear them complain about the things that stopped them from success. You won’t hear them make excuses. Instead, they push forward knowing that they are the only thing that will make or break their success.

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4. They work hard

Have you ever met someone who is super-successful and lazy? Neither have I. The truth is that the road to success is paved with hard work. If you want to achieve great results, you’ll need to wake up early, stay up late and put in your time. Success doesn’t just come to those who want it. You’ve got to pay your dues.

5. Find people who are doing what they want and emulate them

A college professor once gave me some of the best advice I ever received. He said, “if you want to be wealthy, hang out with wealthy people. If you want to be funny, hang out with funny people. And if you want to be poor, hang out with poor people.”

The truth is that people naturally mimic the behaviors of those around them. Mindset is contagious. So if you want to be a big success in life, spend time with others who are already successful.

Don’t know anyone successful? That’s ok. You can read books written by them or about them. Listen to their radio interviews or watch them on TV. Attitude and success is contagious, so catch it by hanging around some of the greats.

6. They believe in themselves and their vision

The school of hard knocks ain’t easy, so if you want to achieve big results, you’ve got to believe in yourself. The world’s most successful people have unshakeable confidence in themselves and in their vision. Without it, they’d have to give up too easily after a few obstacles got in their way.

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How’s your confidence? Do you believe you can achieve your dreams? I’ll tell you something in case nobody told you before: you can do whatever you want in life, you’ve just to first believe it, and then work like mad to get it.

7. They take care of themselves

When was the last time you saw a successful person who was obese or extremely overweight? Sure, these people exist, but they’re the exception to the rule. Most successful people know they need energy to get ahead, and the best way to have that is to eat right, exercise and get proper rest. Which brings us to our next point…

8. They rest and recharge

Hard work is a requirement for success, but you can only push yourself 24/7 for so long. Successful people work hard and then unplug so they can refresh their minds and bodies.

If you’ve been pushing it to the limit, think about unplugging for a long weekend or more. Once you get back to the grind, you’ll be more effective at getting the results you want.

9. They constantly learn

Successful people believe that learning never ends. This doesn’t mean they’re going to school to get new degrees, although they may. Even without formal education, they’re constantly reading and learning from others around them, perhaps from books, trade magazines or conferences, or from others who are ahead of where they want to be.

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What have you learned recently that can get you closer to the success you want? If you haven’t picked up a book, trade magazine or listened to CDs or MP3s that can get you smarter in your field, it’s time to start.

10. They make mistakes and learn from them

Successful people aren’t afraid to take risks. Because of their unshakeable confidence, they treat any mistake as a learning opportunity.

Think about the last mistake you made. Didn’t make a sale? Reevaluate your sales call and make it better next time. Screwed up a presentation? Read a book on how to present successfully so you can crush your next one. Failed in your last relationship? Call your ex and ask what you can do better with your next partner. So go take some risks, don’t be afraid of making mistakes, and if you stumble, learn from it so you can be better next time.

These are 10 things successful people do. How many of them are you doing today? If not all, or most of them, it’s time to upgrade your behaviors so you can get the success you deserve.

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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