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4 Ways That You’ll Ensure Failure

4 Ways That You’ll Ensure Failure

Are you sometimes left feeling completely lost as to why your life isn’t the way you always envisioned it to be? We all feel this way from time to time. Many people really want a better life, but they just don’t know how to achieve it, and we all want to be successful in life, whatever success means to each person.  Unfortunately, only a few people actually change their dreams into their reality. What stops you from achieving all that you desire? What separates those successful individuals from those who could have been successful?

For many people, success is the elusive goal. 80% of the reason why you may not be achieving your goals is most likely due to internal factors; you’re blind to these barriers, and they may be holding you back from obtaining what you want. There are many habits for success which you can develop, and there are many reasons why you might not be achieving success as well. Below are 4 common ways that you might be sabotaging your success without even knowing it.

1. “I’ll get back to that later.”

How many of your daily actions are proactive and reactive? When you hear about the successes of others, you normally don’t read about everything that happened before that moment. If you do, however, you will find that 99% of those individuals took aggressive action each day to close the gap between where they were and where they wanted to be.You must stay focused and direct all of your efforts and actions towards your ideal outcome.  Doing something halfheartedly will bring you half the results.

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It is common to want to give in to activities that give you momentary gratification, but don’t be ignorant to the fact that they are distracting you from your focused objective. If you want to be successful, you must put results before comfort, and prepare to go that extra mile and make more effort. If you have a goal, take action every day to get you closer to achieving them. Did you know that one of the main reasons individuals don’t obtain what they want is because they get distracted and don’t stay focused? It is your choice whether you want to be committed and focused on achieving your goals or not—it’s that simple.

“You can always find a distraction if you’re looking for one.” — Tom Kite.

2. “I’m too scared I will…”

If you don’t take risks in life, you will never achieve all you can. You might avoid certain situations, or perhaps you procrastinate with certain tasks or back away from opportunities without even realizing it. You can achieve what you desire in life, and the only limits you have are the ones that you set for yourself. Everyone is scared, but the difference is whether you allow fear to stop you from living your dreams.

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You must get out of your comfort zone and do different things if you want different results, so start to get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable.  Fear is natural; being ambitious is not about being fearless—we will always have fears at different stages—but rather simply learn how to get over your fears. Did you know that resisting fear actually strengthens it?

“Life’s not about waiting for the storms to pass…It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” – Vivian Greene

3. “I quit”

Similar to not moving forward because of fear is giving up because of obstacles and hurdles. At every stage of your personal and working life, you will face different challenges; the key is to not give up, but instead look for another route if it doesn’t work out the way you wanted. Do you really think that you can achieve all you want effortlessly and easily? You will have to overcome challenges along the way, deal with difficulties, and if you can get through that, success will be yours.

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Do you find yourself saying something along the lines of “I tried to but I couldn’t  or “I couldn’t because he/she…” and “What is the point? It will never work out”?  If you give up every time you face an obstacle, you will never achieve greatness.  Did you know that there are countless cases of individuals who gave up just before achieving success? Perseverance is a key characteristic in all successful individuals.

“When you feel like giving up, remember why you held on for so long in the first place.” – Unknown

4. “I want it now!”

It is hard not to get impatient when you feel like you are trying and trying but not seeing results, but being patient is an essential principle for success. Take one step at a time, but take consistent steps and over time you are sure to reach your goals. Remember that change doesn’t happen overnight; you must be firmly committed to achieving what you desire. If you tend to give up easily, it will be a challenge for you to succeed, but it is important to give yourself time, granted you are taking the right action!

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When you plant a seed, you don’t constantly dig it up to check that it is growing; you trust that a stem will soon appear. Your attitude towards results should be similar—keep going and always remind yourself of the end goal, the purpose for your actions. Did you know that patience is the difference between success or failure?

“Patience is a necessary ingredient of success” – Benjamin Disraeli

Remember to stay focused, be courageous, patient and don’t give up—success will be yours!

What are your obstacles to success? Do you know what you do that holds you back from success?  

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Kirstin O´Donovan

Certified Life and Productivity Coach, Founder and CEO of TopResultsCoaching

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Last Updated on January 24, 2021

How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

Do you say yes so often that you no longer feel that your own needs are being met? Are you wondering how to say no to people?

For years, I was a serial people pleaser[1]. Known as someone who would step up, I would gladly make time, especially when it came to volunteering for certain causes. I proudly carried this role all through grade school, college, even through law school. For years, I thought saying “no” meant I would disappoint a good friend or someone I respected.

But somewhere along the way, I noticed I wasn’t quite living my life. Instead, I seem to have created a schedule that was a strange combination of meeting the expectations of others, what I thought I should be doing, and some of what I actually wanted to do. The result? I had a packed schedule that left me overwhelmed and unfulfilled.

It took a long while, but I learned the art of saying no. Saying no meant I no longer catered fully to everyone else’s needs and could make more room for what I really wanted to do. Instead of cramming too much in, I chose to pursue what really mattered. When that happened, I became a lot happier.

And guess what? I hardly disappointed anyone.

The Importance of Saying No

When you learn the art of saying no, you begin to look at the world differently. Rather than seeing all of the things you could or should be doing (and aren’t doing), you start to look at how to say yes to what’s important.

In other words, you aren’t just reacting to what life throws at you. You seek the opportunities that move you to where you want to be.

Successful people aren’t afraid to say no. Oprah Winfrey, considered one of the most successful women in the world, confessed that it was much later in life when she learned how to say no. Even after she had become internationally famous, she felt she had to say yes to virtually everything.

Being able to say no also helps you manage your time better.

Warren Buffett views “no” as essential to his success. He said:

“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”

When I made “no” a part of my toolbox, I drove more of my own success, focusing on fewer things and doing them well.

How We Are Pressured to Say Yes

It’s no wonder a lot of us find it hard to say no.

From an early age, we are conditioned to say yes. We said yes probably hundreds of times in order to graduate from high school and then get into college. We said yes to find work, to get a promotion, to find love and then yes again to stay in a relationship. We said yes to find and keep friends.

We say yes because we feel good when we help someone, because it can seem like the right thing to do, because we think that is key to success, and because the request might come from someone who is hard to resist.

And that’s not all. The pressure to say yes doesn’t just come from others. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves.

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At work, we say yes because we compare ourselves to others who seem to be doing more than we are. Outside of work, we say yes because we are feeling bad that we aren’t doing enough to spend time with family or friends.

The message, no matter where we turn, is nearly always, “You really could be doing more.” The result? When people ask us for our time, we are heavily conditioned to say yes.

How Do You Say No Without Feeling Guilty?

Deciding to add the word “no” to your toolbox is no small thing. Perhaps you already say no, but not as much as you would like. Maybe you have an instinct that if you were to learn the art of no that you could finally create more time for things you care about.

But let’s be honest, using the word “no” doesn’t come easily for many people.

3 Rules of Thumbs for Saying No

1. You Need to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Let’s face it. It is hard to say no. Setting boundaries around your time, especially you haven’t done it much in the past, will feel awkward. Your comfort zone is “yes,” so it’s time to challenge that and step outside that.

If you need help getting out of your comfort zone, check out this article.

2. You Are the Air Traffic Controller of Your Time

When you want to learn how to say no, remember that you are the only one who understands the demands for your time. Think about it: who else knows about all of the demands in your life? No one.

Only you are at the center of all of these requests. You are the only one that understands what time you really have.

3. Saying No Means Saying Yes to Something That Matters

When we decide not to do something, it means we can say yes to something else that we may care more about. You have a unique opportunity to decide how you spend your precious time.

6 Ways to Start Saying No

Incorporating that little word “no” into your life can be transformational. Turning some things down will mean you can open doors to what really matters. Here are some essential tips to learn the art of no:

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1. Check in With Your Obligation Meter

One of the biggest challenges to saying no is a feeling of obligation. Do you feel you have a responsibility to say yes and worry that saying no will reflect poorly on you?

Ask yourself whether you truly have the duty to say yes. Check your assumptions or beliefs about whether you carry the responsibility to say yes. Turn it around and instead ask what duty you owe to yourself.

2. Resist the Fear of Missing out (FOMO)

Do you have a fear of missing out (FOMO)? FOMO can follow us around in so many ways. At work, we volunteer our time because we fear we won’t move ahead. In our personal lives, we agree to join the crowd because of FOMO, even while we ourselves aren’t enjoying the fun.

Check in with yourself. Are you saying yes because of FOMO or because you really want to say yes? More often than not, running after fear doesn’t make us feel better[2].

3. Check Your Assumptions About What It Means to Say No

Do you dread the reaction you will get if you say no? Often, we say yes because we worry about how others will respond or because of the consequences. We may be afraid to disappoint others or think we will lose their respect. We often forget how much we are disappointing ourselves along the way.

Keep in mind that saying no can be exactly what is needed to send the right message that you have limited time. In the tips below, you will see how to communicate your no in a gentle and loving way.

You might disappoint someone initially, but drawing a boundary can bring you the freedom you need so that you can give freely of yourself when you truly want to. And it will often help others have more respect for you and your boundaries, not less.

4. When the Request Comes in, Sit on It

Sometimes, when we are in the moment, we instinctively agree. The request might make sense at first. Or we typically have said yes to this request in the past.

Give yourself a little time to reflect on whether you really have the time or can do the task properly. You may decide the best option is to say no. There is no harm in giving yourself the time to decide.

5. Communicate Your “No” with Transparency and Kindness

When you are ready to tell someone no, communicate your decision clearly. The message can be open and honest[3] to ensure the recipient that your reasons have to do with your limited time.

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How do you say no? 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

    Resist the temptation not to respond or communicate all. But do not feel obligated to provide a lengthy account about why you are saying no.

    Clear communication with a short explanation is all that is needed. I have found it useful to tell people that I have many demands and need to be careful with how I allocate my time. I will sometimes say I really appreciate that they came to me and for them to check in again if the opportunity arises another time.

    6. Consider How to Use a Modified No

    If you are under pressure to say yes but want to say no, you may want to consider downgrading a “yes” to a “yes but…” as this will give you an opportunity to condition your agreement to what works best for you.

    Sometimes, the condition can be to do the task, but not in the time frame that was originally requested. Or perhaps you can do part of what has been asked.

    Final Thoughts

    Beginning right now, you can change how you respond to requests for your time. When the request comes in, take yourself off autopilot where you might normally say yes.

    Use the request as a way to draw a healthy boundary around your time. Pay particular attention to when you place certain demands on yourself.

    Try it now. Say no to a friend who continues to take advantage of your goodwill. Or, draw the line with a workaholic colleague and tell them you will complete the project, but not by working all weekend. You’ll find yourself much happier.

    More Tips on How to Say No

    Featured photo credit: Chris Ainsworth via unsplash.com

    Reference

    [1] Science of People: 11 Expert Tips to Stop Being a People Pleaser and Start Doing You
    [2] Anxiety and Depression Association of America: Tips to Get Over Your FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out
    [3] Cooks Hill Counseling: 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

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