Advertising
Advertising

14 Habits Of Highly Excellent People

14 Habits Of Highly Excellent People

Highly excellent people seem to have it all figured out, don’t they? There’s stress and chaos going on all around them, but they barely break a sweat. They just go about their excellency and leave the rest of us who aren’t feeling very…well, excellent…to wonder what we’re doing wrong. What can we do to upgrade our lives and become highly excellent people? What are they doing that’s so different from what we’re doing?

As it turns out, a lot. Here’s a breakdown of what highly excellent people have in common so you can get in on the action too:

1. They focus on quality over quantity.

Their priorities are top of mind and never waver. Instead of being bogged down by details and expectations, they keep their stress levels in check by accomplishing what’s most important to them first, and then dedicating the time that’s left to the little extras.

2. They put their health/well-being first.

Highly excellent people know they can’t accomplish anything of any quality when they feel like sh…crap. They always put their health and well-being first: They exercise regularly, eat healthy, and always make time for leisurely activities and hobbies they consider relaxing.

Advertising

3. They know their strengths and weaknesses.

We all have strengths and weaknesses, but instead of suppressing their weaknesses and struggling to overcome them, highly excellent people accept and work with their shortcomings (after all, the harder you try to deny something about yourself, the stronger it becomes). From personal experience, it’s also a great way to keep your self-esteem intact. Nobody can accept who you are in your entirety until you do.

4. They trust their instincts.

Highly excellent people are a sucker for their instincts. They don’t cater to what others expect of them – their compass always points toward what they expect from themselves.

5. They have high standards.

Not only do they have high standards, they don’t allow the concept of high standards to intimidate them. They understand nothing’s perfect, but find deep satisfaction in doing things to the best of their ability. They know it’s a lot easier to do things right the first time than to have to redo them later.

6. They have a plan.

Highly excellent people know exactly what they want, both professionally and personally. They have a very clear picture of what their life will look like if they keep striving and keep moving ahead. They also don’t settle for anything less than what they want.

Advertising

7. They don’t sacrifice their creativity.

By that I mean, they don’t let the concept of potentially living out of a shopping cart intimidate them. Sure, they might go through the occasional financial drought where all that’s on the menu is peanut butter sandwiches, but at least they feel alive. They don’t take on jobs they don’t believe in for the sake of making money – they use the threat of having to do so as fuel and work harder on their big picture.

8. They set realistic goals.

They don’t create to-do lists that not even a robot could complete in a timely manner. When they set their goals, they always factor in time for, you know, eating, sleeping, even going to the bathroom. They appreciate showering too.

9. They singletask.

Highly excellent people know multitasking is a crock. See #1.

10. They constantly adjust their course.

Success doesn’t happen in a straight line. It’s more like steering a car: You keep the car straight by moving the steering wheel from side-to-side to stay on track. This is how highly excellent people tackle their goals: They constantly evolve, integrate new strategies, and reevaluate after each step.

Advertising

11. They automate what will never change.

Laundry, drag. Dishes, barf. Emails, puh-lease! This is where many of us trip over ourselves as highly excellent people breeze right past us. Instead of becoming annoyed and disrupted by the ongoing details of maintaining their lifestyle, they use them to their advantage by creating creativity pillars.

What they want to accomplish isn’t easy. Their day is filled with uncertainty, but the above ongoing tasks are certain. They will always be there. Highly excellent people have automated these habits so they can get them done quickly while using the least amount of energy possible. Genius, no?

12. They do what they love.

I mean, really, what else is there?

13. They work smart.

They work in short bursts of 30 to 90 minutes, with short breaks in between to regroup and rest before moving on to the next task. Some days they’ll only work for four hours, while others they’ll work eight. It all depends on what needs to be done that day. They do what it takes to make it happen, but without burning themselves out in the process.

Advertising

14. They trust in their talent.

No matter who tries (whether intentionally or not) to disrupt their thought process or plant seeds of doubt, highly excellent people know without a doubt that they’re doing exactly what they want to be doing exactly when they want to be doing it. Can their critics say the same?

What do you admire most about highly excellent people? Let us know in the comments.

More by this author

Krissy Brady

A women's health & wellness writer with a short-term goal to leave women feeling a little more empowered and a little less verklempt.

25 Questions That Help You Understand Yourself and Your True Potential 9 Daily Habits That Will Change Your Life 7 Ways to Eliminate Your Excuses 20 Things to Do When You Feel Extremely Angry 11 Benefits of Almond Milk You Didn’t Know About

Trending in Productivity

1 5 Values of an Effective Leader 2 How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them 3 The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work) 4 30 Practical Ideas to Create Your Best Morning Routine 5 Is People Management the Right Career Path for You?

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

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)

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.

Advertising

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!

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Advertising

Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

Read Next