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20 Things Average People Do That Prevent Them From Being Successful

20 Things Average People Do That Prevent Them From Being Successful

We all hate it. The word ‘average’ is becoming an insult nowadays. Do you think you’re average? If you really want to stop being just one of the crowd, read further and stop being average forever.

1. They watch too much TV.

Watching TV is fine but too much is not good. It takes too much of your time with little benefit. Most of the programs are geared to entertain and not to educate. Plus, advertisements can influence you to buy the things you don’t need. Reduce, or stop altogether, watching TV because your time is too precious to be spent in front of an evil cube.

2. They play too much.

When you play too much that means you are spending too much time doing unproductive things. It’s okay to play if you want to release your stress, but like the case of TV above, too much playing around wouldn’t be good for our productivity. Reduce the amount of entertainment in all forms and focus more on doing meaningful work.

3. They are too lazy to track their time.

Tracking time is boring. But most people forget that it’s one of the most beneficial activities that promotes productivity. By tracking time, you will be more aware of how you use time. This will help you be more cautious of how you spend every second of your life. Time is a non-renewable resource, so it’s better to use it as efficiently as possible.

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4. They wake up late.

Waking up late means that you have less time to do things. It’s actually a hint of you being an unproductive person. Most people have the most energy in the morning, but if they aren’t awake at that time, all that energy will go to waste. That’s why waking up early is super important if you want to get more things done in a day. Waking up early can also help you to be better prepared because you can use that morning to get a good breakfast and relax before facing a busy day.

5. They rely too much on inspiration and motivation.

Moments of inspiration rarely come. If you rely on it too much, you will never get anything done. You are obligated to do what you are meant to do, no matter how inspired you are feeling on a particular day. That’s just how life goes.

6. They are lazy.

Being lazy is a huge barrier for productivity because it doesn’t promote action. When you’re not doing anything, you’re automatically average. Avoid laziness and stay active.

7. They don’t act on their thoughts.

All of us have great ideas and thoughts in our mind. What separates the successful with the average is that successful people act on their thoughts and try to turn their ideas into reality. Don’t discount the power of your thoughts and ideas. As long as you believe in them, act.

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8. They make too much assumptions.

Making assumptions about anything is bad if you don’t test it. Never ever settle to an assumption and think that it’s a fact. Assumptions need to always be tested because living on assumptions is the same as not living at all.

9. They lack critical thinking skills.

Most people don’t question the things they read, listen or hear. Questioning is important because it helps us to be better critical thinkers. There are too many people out there who are keen on lying and persuading you to their evil cause, and it’s up to you to question the things these people say and make sure that it’s in your interest to join them.

10. They have a fixed mindset.

When you want to learn something that’s difficult, will you give up? Will you say that the difficulties are caused by your lack of talent and you can’t do anything about it? If you say yes, then you have a fixed mindset. Average people have a fixed mindset and they believe that they’re stuck with whatever they think they’re born with. Don’t be like that. Cultivate a growth mindset and do whatever you want in life, no matter how difficult it might be. As long as you put in the effort, you’ll surely grow.

11. They lack patience.

Delaying gratification has been discovered to be a strong determinant of success. If you can’t delay rewards and seek quick fixes, then you might be average. Learn to seek rewards that are huge and takes time to achieve, and avoid small rewards that aren’t worth your time.

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12. They don’t take notes.

Average people forget that they have limited capacity to memorize things. There are memory techniques that can help us remember things, but they are short-term fixes. Learn to take note of the things that are interesting and insightful–your ideas, observations, and experiences. Carry a notebook with you so you can jot down all of them in one place.

13. They don’t listen to others.

Most of us love ourselves. We love to talk about us, but rarely do we become interested in others. You already know yourself and you are always with yourself. Why not be more interested in others? Always talking about yourself won’t bring you much benefit, but listening to others can give you interesting insight into yourself and the world around you.

14. They feel entitled.

Why are there so many complainers today? Many people have really strong sense of entitlement. They think that others should do this and that, and if they don’t, these complainers would tell that they don’t deserve that kind of service. Avoid complaining and speak out your concern in a respectful way. People don’t care about you and the world also doesn’t revolve around you. But they will care if you respect them.

15. They talk bad about others behind their back.

Gossiping is food for average people. Don’t talk bad about others behind their back because that makes you a coward. If you don’t like something about someone, talk to the person. It might hurt the person’s feeling but that’s better because at least the person can improve himself based on your feedback.

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16. They are too lazy to read books.

It’s difficult to find someone who makes reading a daily practice. Reading is a good replacement for the empty entertainment we have today. Learn to read every day and you’ll be closer to success.

17. They read passively.

You’ll still be average if you read passively. If you read only to consume the information and leave it at that, it’s a waste of time. Read to think and act. After reading a book, think about what you’ve read, summarize it, share it with your friends, or do just about anything so as long as you don’t let the information go stagnate inside your mind.

18. They hate to create.

Creating anything takes time and effort. And we know that it’s easier to be a consumer than to be a creator. Be a creator. Write a book, create a podcast, or record a video. There are many things you can create in this world and it’s a waste of your existence if you don’t do at least one of them.

19. They lack a strong purpose.

Everyone’s heard about it. You must live with a purpose. But having a purpose is not enough. Your purpose must be strong. To create that strong purpose, you’ll to remind yourself of the purpose every day. If it doesn’t make you continue moving, then it’s time to find a new one.

20. They call others average.

No, I’m not calling you an average person in this article. That’s up for you to decide. In the end, no one has the right to call others average. No one’s average in this world; their actions are average but the one’s doing it are not. So, stop looking at others as if you’re better than them. You are yourself, and they are themselves. Everyone has the potential to succeed as long as they stop doing average things.

Featured photo credit: Colleen is bored/Jason Scragz via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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