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10 Things All Highly Successful People Do

10 Things All Highly Successful People Do
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S-U-C-C-E-S-S, that’s the way spell success!

Do you find yourself often Googling motivational quotes, searching YouTube clips for inspirational graduation speeches and videos, and reading anything that Stephen Covey (Author of “7 Highly Effective Habits of Successful People”) produces?

Successful people eat, sleep, and breathe personal improvement. Because of this, success is an art and not a science. So if you don’t mind, I would like to paint you a picture of 10 characteristics of highly successful people that you must emulate right now to create the best version of you!

1. They greet every individual by their name.

Dale Carnegie, the godfather of self-improvement, interpersonal skill development, and public speaking, always emphasized that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. Therefore take time to learn people’s names, their interests, their passions, and what’s important to them.

By simply putting a little effort into knowing people as humans and not statistics will go a long way when it’s time to rally the troops.

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2. They learn to delegate.

Being in a leadership position means you are charged with improving the present in order to ensure a prosperous future. If you are bogged down trying to do every single task your way or managing others to ensure they do it your way, you are going to burn out like a sparkler on the 4th of July.

You can find Paul Orfalea, founder of Kinko’s, constantly communicating to his team that “Busy is not a good word. It’s not a good excuse. Get it done; delegate it!” Successful people understand the value of delegating work in helping create autonomy and confidence from within others – which will pay dividends in the long run for everyone.

3. They communicate when times are good, bad, and ugly.

The Dalai Lama put it best with, “A lack of transparency results in distrust and a deep sense of insecurity.” You can’t argue with the Dalai Lama. Simply put – be transparent. Transparency, regardless of what is going on, will build trust, honesty, and respect among everyone you impact on a daily basis.

Highly successful people know that there is nothing more important in inspiring and motivating others than building trust, sharing honestly, and earning respect. Get’r done!

4. They are okay with being role models.

Albert Schweitzer, a great philosopher and humanitarian among other things, always emphasized that “Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.” Being a role model is not something you get to choose. Regardless of whether you want to be or not, you are a role model.

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So instead of worrying about having to be perfect all of the time, be authentic, humanistic, and strive to be the best version of you. Because somewhere out there, someone is watching what you do and what you say in the hopes of one day becoming the great, honest and transparent leader that is you.

5. They recognize the importance of recognizing others.

As Maya Angelou infamously put it, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Highly successful people know how invaluable public displays of recognition are with regards to empowering others. Constantly celebrate and recognize positive efforts and individual accomplishments.

Doing this illustrates that you are aware of even the small things that occur on a regular basis. And when it boils down to it, life is only about the small things. Every success is founded by a thousand small positive exchanges – one a day, every day, as often as you can.

6. They only try to be themselves.

Some of our greatest leaders are not stoic, as history would tell. Instead they are dynamic, eccentric (think Mark Cuban), zealous, and most importantly, humanistic. People relate and attach themselves to those who are authentic, energetic, and charismatic – all of which you can’t be if you are spending all of your time trying to be someone else.

Steve Jobs also said, “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”

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7. They don’t work for their work calendar.

Mark Cuban, one of the wealthiest and busiest men in America has been repeatedly quoted saying, “Time is more valuable than money,” especially when it’s your own. Sure, highly successful people’s calendars may look like the end of a Tetris game, but that doesn’t mean their time and conversations are dictated by Outlook invites.

Instead their schedule is whatever it takes to empower others to find their own success. Success isn’t dictated by meetings, it’s created through meaningful exchanges.

8. They constantly wear everyone else’s shoes

Sir Richard Branson has gone on record numerous times stating the importance of understanding and looking for the best in your people, “I love my people, I love spending time with my people, and most importantly I love learning from my people.” Follow in his footsteps by making it a point to spend some time with your peers by placing yourself in their shoes.

By doing this you will be reminded every day how invaluable the people in your life are to your success! In Sir Richard’s mind, no job is ever below him and every job is essential to his personal and professional success.

9. They live active lives

Just think of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. If life is an endurance sport, then success is our fuel. Becoming and staying successful is like running a marathon. In order to survive this marathon we need to fuel ourselves with the right things – people, thoughts, and experiences. As Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson says, “Success isn’t always about greatness. It’s about consistency. Consistent hard work gains success. Greatness will come.”

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Successful people not only train their minds, hearts, and will, but they train their bodies to endure the grind that is necessary to become successful too.

10. They take time to decompress

Doe Zantamata, author of the book “Karma”, accentuates through her literature that by “Taking time to do nothing will often bring everything into perspective.” Being successful takes a lot of energy, drive, and passion. No matter how centered or even-keeled we are, we are still susceptible to fatigue and burnout.

Highly successful people know how vital it is to take time for themself, re-focus, re-energize, and re-calibrate on their vision and goals. At the end of the day we are only humans doing the work of superheroes and even a superhero has a weakness.

Don’t let your lack of attention to your needs become your kryptonite. Create a great day!

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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