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14 Things Successful People Do Differently

14 Things Successful People Do Differently

Do you know someone who is financially, emotionally, and physically secure? Ever met a man or woman with healthy relationships, a healthy pocketbook, a fit physique, and a charismatic smile that tells you they’re happy and they know it?

Ever wondered how successful people got that way?

As it turns out, these go-getters have a lot in common. Join their ranks and increase your personal and professional satisfaction with these 14 tips from successful people:

1. Define “success” for yourself.

What does your perfect day look like? How do you spend your time, who do you see, what do you do? Is there a family in this picture? Do you get dressed up or embrace your inner pajama-wearing night owl? No two definitions of “success” are the same, nor should they be — the state is that highly personal one where you are happy, healthy, and provided for.

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2. Recognize “success” as a dynamic state, with a changing definition.

What you want and need, what makes you happy, will evolve over time. Allow this evolution to shape your ambitions.

3. Enjoy the process.

Because what you want, need and pursue will change, focus on the process rather than a finite end state. After all, the process is all that you have to keep you going day in and day out; find satisfaction there.

4. Be willing to give things up.

If you have time “for yourself,” or “to relax,” or “you time” during your first year of startup in a new business, you aren’t working hard enough. Likewise, don’t expect a day off during a crunch season in your industry or at your company. “Work-life balance” often means taking only as much as you are happy with from one, to feed the other. In practice, there are a finite number of hours in the day. If you are using them to pursue success, there won’t be much left over.

5. Relentlessly pursue goals.

First, establish a quantifiable, readily explained goal, stated in simple terms. Then, dedicate all your resources of time, energy and money to it. If an endeavor does not further this stated goal, then do not pursue it.

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6. Study, every day.

There is such a vast amount to explore in this world and your corner in it. Successful people are intellectually curious, insatiably hungry for more information and new outlooks.

7. Take advantage of small chunks of time.

People who say they “don’t have time” are wrong — they do have time. They’re probably wasting it zoning out on the train, watching television while they cook, or in some other dribbling way. Know where your time goes, and use small parts of it. It takes a few minutes to return emails or phone calls, or make a little bit of progress around your house or office. Pull a weed every time you step across the lawn, always have a book handy, have the phone number of the next call you need to make at the ready, in case you find yourself in line. There are scraps of time littered throughout your day — use them productively.

8. Rest when needed.

We’re human. We tire. We need sleep. We need quality food and fuel. Give your body and mind these things, if you expect them to perform.

9. Keep a “brains book.”

Don’t rely on your memory — keep a small notebook with you at all times to jot down tasks, notes, and great ideas as they come.

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10. See challenges as a source of inspiration.

You will fail at some point, or many points. Dust yourself off, and resolve to be better. If you’re down, you’re out, and you’ll never become successful without staying in the game.

11. Allow not even the sky to limit you.

Someone who says you can’t means they can’t, or they haven’t tried. Dream big. Work harder.

12. Live joyfully.

Successful people are such by their own terms. When you get there, and as you work to stay there, enjoy it! This is your life, your days, your time, and you built this success. Be proud. Be happy.

13. Empower the team.

It takes a village to do most things worth doing. Also, you’re not the best at everything. Surround yourself with good people, pay them well, let them do their jobs. Trust them. Give them room to grow. Create an environment in which you are an important part of someone else’s success.

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14. Peel back the curtain.

Approach your own feelings, responses, and challenges with intellectual curiosity and a determination to become better.

Newly committed to excellence? Read up on the 20 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People.

Featured photo credit: Moon Shots via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

Do you think of yourself as a creative person? Do you play the drums or do watercolor paintings? Perhaps compose songs or direct plays? Can you even relate to any of these so called ‘creative’ experiences? Growing up, did you ever have that ‘artistic’ sibling or friend who excelled in drawing, playing instruments or literature? And you maybe wondered why you can’t even compose a birthday card greeting–or that drawing stick figures is the furthest you’ll ever get to drawing a family portrait. Many people have this common assumption that creativity is an inborn talent; only a special group of people are inherently creative, and everyone else just unfortunately does not have that special ability. You either have that creative flair or instinct, or you don’t. But, this is far from the truth! So what is creativity?

Can I Be Creative?

The fact is, that everyone has an innate creative ability. Despite what most people may think, creativity is a skill that everyone can learn and hone on. It’s a skill with huge leverage that allows you to generate enormous amounts of value from relatively little input. How is that so? You’ll have to start by expanding your definition of creativity. Ironically, you have to be creative and ‘think out of the box’ with the definition! Creativity at its heart, is being able to see things in a way that others cannot. It’s a skill that helps you find new perspectives to create new possibilities and solutions to different problems. So, if you encounter different challenges and problems that need solving on a regular basis, then creativity is an invaluable skill to have.Let’s say, for example, that you work in sales. Having creativity will help you to look for new ways to approach and reach out to potential customers. Or perhaps you’re a teacher. In this role you have to constantly look for new ways to deliver your message and educate your students.

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How Creativity Works

Let me break another misconception about creativity, which is that it’s only used to create completely “new” or “original” things. Again, this is far from the truth. Because nothing is ever completely new or original. Everything, including works of art, doesn’t come from nothing. Everything derives from some sort of inspiration. That means that creativity works by connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value.From this perspective, you can see a lot of creativity in action. In technology, Apple combines traditional computers with design and aesthetics to create new ways to use digital products. In music, a musician may be inspired by various styles of music, instruments and rhythms to create an entirely new type of song. All of these examples are about connecting different ideas, finding common ground amongst the differences, and creating a completely new idea out of them.

What Really Is Creativity?

Creativity Needs an Intention

Another misconception about the creative process is that you can just be in a general “creative” state. Real creativity isn’t about coming up with “eureka!” moments for random ideas. Instead, to be truly creative, you need to have a direction. You have to ask yourself this question: “What problem am I trying to solve?” Only by knowing the answer to this question can you start flexing your creativity muscles. Often times, the idea of creativity is associated with the ‘Right’ brain, with intuition and imagination. Hence a lot of focus is placed on the ‘Right’ brain when it comes to creativity. But, to get the most out of creativity, you need to utilize both sides of your brain–Right and Left–which means using the analytical and logical part of your brain, too. This may sound surprising to you, but creativity has a lot to do with problem solving. And, problem solving inherently involves logic and analysis. So instead of throwing out the ‘Left’ brain, full creativity needs them to work in unison. For example, when you’re looking for new ideas, your ‘Left’ brain will guide you to a place of focus, which is based on your objective behind the ideas you’re searching for. The ‘Right’ brain then guides you to gather and explore based on your current focus. And when you decide to try out these new ideas, your ‘Right’ brain will give you novel solutions outside of the ones you already know. Your ‘Left’ brain then helps you evaluate and tune the solutions to work better in practice. So, logic and creativity actually work hand in hand, and not one at the expense of the other.

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Creativity Is a Skill

At the end of the day, creativity is a skill. It’s not some innate or natural born talent that some have over others. What this means is that creativity and innovation can be practiced and improved upon systematically.A skill can be learned and practiced by applying your strongest learning styles. Want to know what your learning style is? Try this test. A skill can be measured and improved through a Feedback Loop, and can be continuously upgraded over time by regular practice. Through regular practice, your creativity goes through different stages of proficiency. This means that you can become more and more creative! If you never thought that creativity was relevant to you, or that you don’t have a knack for being creative… think again! You can use creativity in any aspect of your life. In fact you should use it, as it will allow you to to break through your usual loop, get you out of your comfort zone, and inspire you to grow and try new things. Creativity will definitely give you an edge when you’re trying to solve a problem or come up with new solutions.

Start Connecting the Dots

Excited to start honing your creativity? Here at Lifehack, we’ve got a wealth of knowledge to help you get started. We understand that creativity is a matter of connecting things together in order to derive new meaning or value. So, if you want to learn how to start connecting the dots, check out these tips:

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Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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