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10 Things All Highly Successful People Do

10 Things All Highly Successful People Do

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 February 21, 2019

7 Natural Memory Boosters That Actually Work for All Ages

7 Natural Memory Boosters That Actually Work for All Ages

Forgot a name? Misplaced your keys? Taking longer to find the right words? Don’t panic. There’s plenty you can do to improve your memory.

You’re probably expecting us to reveal 7 little known and newly discovered herbs from the forests of the Amazon, the peaks of the Himalayas and the Arctic tundra. No such luck.

Despite Americans spending hundreds of millions of dollars a year on Ginkgo Biloba, Ashwagandha, Periwinkle, Bacopa, Vitamin B’s, Omega 3’s and memory boosting supplement cocktails, there is very little scientific evidence they actually work. [1]

Instead, we’re going to offer you 7 completely natural memory boosters, backed up by scientific research. It may take a little more effort than a magic memory pill, but the benefits will transcend your memory and improve your overall quality of life as well, making you more fit, energetic, happy and sharp.

How Do We Remember?

The first process in remembering is creating a memory.

This is where our brain sends a signal, associated with a thought, event or piece of information our mind is processing, over our brains neural pathways, called synapses.

Think of our neural pathways like roads and information like trucks. The better the roads, the more trucks can be driven.

The second step in remembering is memory consolidation.

Consolidation is when the brain takes that thought, event or piece of information and actually stores it in the brain. So now we’re talking about taking delivery of the trucks and storing its contents in the warehouse.

Consolidation helps us store information and label it properly, so its organized and easy to retrieve when needed.

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The last step is memory retrieval.

That’s the step whereby we try to retrieve the information stored in our brains. You know when you have the name of someone on the tip of your tongue.

You have the information; it’s been stored, but you just can’t find it. Our memory recall is typically better the stronger the memory is and the more often we’ve used it.

Memory decline is a normal part of aging. However, new scientific research is discovering many new ways for us to improve memory creation, consolidation and retrieval–no matter our age.

7 Natural Memory Boosters

So how to work on memory and boost your brain power? Here’re 7 brain boosters backed by science that you should try:

1. Aerobic Exercise

Aerobic activity is about as close as we get to a magic pill for our memories. Exercise helps your brain create new capillaries and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which creates new brain cells and connections. To put it in plain english, aerobic activity changes our brains and helps it grow.

Studies have shown that exercising increases the size of the hippocampus and improves memory. In fact, even if you start exercising as an older adult, you can reverse cognitive decline by 1 to 2 years and protects against further decreases in the size of the hippocampus, which is essential for memory. [2]

In another study, reviewed by Dr. Ian Robertson of the University of Dublin, they looked at a group of people of 60 years and older, who engaged in “active walking” for four months.

They compared them with another group of people who only stretched over the same period of time. After testing both groups before and after the 4 month period, the walkers improved their memory and attention considerably more than the stretching group.

So which exercises are best and how much do we have to exercise?

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Turns out, it doesn’t really matter whether you run, swim, row or bike. What does matter is that you push yourself beyond your current abilities, keep doing more, keep getting better. Set yourself short term goals and keep pushing the goal posts.

2. Sleep

You need your sleep. The deeper the better. Sleep helps improve your procedural memory (how to do things, like how do I navigate my iPhone) and declarative memory (facts, like what’s my password). [3]

Even short naps from 6 to 45 minutes have been shown to improve your memory. In one Harvard study, college students memorized pairs of unrelated words, memorized a maze and copied a complex form. All were tested on their work. Half were then allowed to take a 45 minute nap. They were then retested. Those who took a nap, got a boost in their performance. [4]

Another study showed that getting REM (deep) sleep can increase your memory and mental performance by 33% to 73%. Getting a deep sleep helps the brain consolidate memories through dreams and “associative processing”. However, the study also revealed that heart rate variability in deep sleep also contributed significantly to increased memory performance. [5]

3. MIND Diet

Healthy eating, particularly more dark colored fruit, vegetables and oily fish has been shown to improve memory and stave off cognitive decline.

The MIND diet is proven to reduce the risk of dementia. It’s a mix of the popular Mediterranean diet and the low blood pressure DASH diet. [6]

The study kept track of the diets of almost 1,000 older adults. They were followed for an average of 4½ years.

The study concluded that “people whose diets were most strongly in line with the MIND diet had brains that functioned as if they were 7½ years younger than those whose diets least resembled this eating style.”

The study also showed that people who followed the MIND diet in the study reduced their chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease in half.

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So what does the MIND diet consist of? Lots of vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, berries, beans, fish, poultry, olive oil, whole grains and wine.

4. Relax

We all know that stress is bad for our health. It can raise our blood pressure, impact our immune system and interrupt our sleep. Stress also impairs our memory.

When our body gets stressed, it releases cortisol into our blood stream, which can cause short and long term physical changes to the brain. While cortisol has sometimes been shown to cause increases in short term memory, it can actually decrease our long term recall memory.

To help reduce the stress in your life, try relaxing with meditation, yoga or breathing exercises. Unplug–even for just a few hours. Stop checking your emails, social accounts and news. Release some endorphins with some exercise.

Bottom line, the more anxious and stressed we are, the less clearly we think, the poorer our memory works.

5. Continuous Learning

The mind is like a muscle. The more you challenge it, the stronger it gets. The more you learn, the more you can learn.

Research shows that learning can actually change the physical makeup of your brain. Not too long ago, we used to think that you were born with a fixed amount of brain cells, which declined with age. New research now shows that we can actually increase the number of brain cells we have throughout our life.

Aside from staying physically active, learning new skills and studying can actually keep our brains healthier. Consider taking a continuing education class, studying a new language, learning a new instrument, playing new card games. [7]

Studies show that the more complex the task, the more benefits for your mind. Simply showing up to class is not enough. You need to be actively engaged. Anything that forces you to focus and learn something new and get out of a rote routine will help you sharpen your mind and boost your memory.

6. Stay Social

The more deep and meaningful social connections you maintain, the more you protect your brain. Bottom line, the more friends you have, the more people you work with, the more you’re forced to use your brain.

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Social isolation and loneliness are significant risks of dementia. Without interacting with others, our brains wilt. Isolation and loneliness lead to depression, physical and mental decline. [8]

In a 2016 study published in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, seniors with a full social calendar did better on memory, reasoning, and processing speed tests. [9]

What to do?

Party! Seriously, get together with friends as often as possible. Have family dinners. Choose social activities or sports like tennis, golf, cards or go for walks with a friend. Bottom line have fun, build meaningful social relationships and stay connected. Not only will it make your mind sharper and your memory better, you’ll be happier, too!

7. Wakeful Rest

This one is getting harder and harder to do. In a world where we can’t sit on a bus, go up an elevator or go to the bathroom without our phones, doing absolutely nothing to distract our minds is becoming increasingly difficult.

But, the results are in. Doing nothing is great for your memory. Quietly resting for 10 minutes, after you learn something will help you remember and help you create more detailed memories. [10]

What we do minutes after we learn something new has a significant impact on how well we retain the new information. In another study, it didn’t matter what you did after you learned something new, as long as you weren’t distracted by outside factors. In other words, you could be thinking of your day, making a grocery list, or thinking of a story. In either case, wakeful rest for a period of 10 minutes helped the brain process and consolidate your memories so that you were better able to recall the information at a later date. [11]

Conclusion

You don’t have to spend a dime on cocktails and supplements promising a quick boost to your memory power. There is very little conclusive scientific evidence suggesting supplements will help improve the memories of healthy individuals–not for Ginkgo Biloba, Vitamin B, fish oils, Vitamin D, Folate or other supplements claiming they a secret formula.

There are far cheaper and more effective ways to boost your memory: exercise, rest, eat well, learn, love, laugh and relax. Who wouldn’t want that prescription?

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

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