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15 Small Things Successful People Do Every Day

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15 Small Things Successful People Do Every Day

There are certain people that come to your mind when you think about success. Perhaps they are people like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, or Larry Page. Yet the frenzy around these people can be so noisy that you start getting bewildered on what it actually takes to achieve success. The truth is that what successful people do daily, the things that define them, are actually discreet and little actions. Here are fifteen small things successful people do every day.

1. They focus on being productive rather than being busy

According to Tim Ferris, the author of the The 4-Hour Workweek, “Slow down and remember this: Most things make no difference. Being busy is often a form of mental laziness – lazy thinking and indiscriminate action.”

2. They wake up early

Sergio Marchionne, the CEO of Fiat and Chrysler, wakes up as early as 3:30am to deal with the European market. Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple Inc., starts his day as early as 4:30am to send emails. Jeffrey Immelt, the CEO of General Electric, says he wakes up by 5:30am for his daily workout routine.

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3. They focus on being with the best team

Renowned basketball coach Phil Jackson said, “The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.” Successful people know that they have to be with people who will complement them. Company and management expert Ken Blanchard says, “None of us is as smart as all of us.”

4. They focus on making small and continuous improvements

There is a concept that you cannot eat an elephant all at once. You have to take it one bit at a time. Henry Ford once said, “Nothing is particularly hard if you divide it into small pieces.”

5. They meditate

According to Oprah Winfrey on meditation, “the results have been awesome. Better sleep. Improved relationships with spouses, children, coworkers. Some people who once suffered migraines don’t anymore. Greater productivity and creativity all around.” Successful people take time to meditate. The founder of Def Jam, Russell Simmons, says Transcendental meditation changed his life.

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6. They take care of their bodies

Regular exercise doesn’t only keep the body physically healthy, but also helps with your mental state. The chief of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Frits van Paasschen, starts at 6am and runs 10 miles per day. President Barack Obama runs 3 miles or exercises 45 minutes per day, six days a week.

7. They have balanced lives

To achieve wonderful things in life, you need to maintain balance. Successful people keep a balance with making money, spending time with their family and loved ones, and achieving personal goals.

 8. They focus on the positive

In his book, The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor explains that a recent scientific study showed that doctors who are put in a positive mood before making a diagnosis consistently experience significant boosts to their intellectual abilities compared with doctors in a neutral state. Because of this, they are able to make accurate diagnoses almost 20% faster. Successful people are always optimistic about situations.

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9. They keep track of their progress

Eminem, Oprah Winfrey, and J.K Rowling all keep journals. They are able to keep track of their progress, set goals, reflect, and learn from their mistakes. They understand that they need a map to accomplish great things. Sometimes, this notebook or journal is the map they need.

10. They create their success

They understand that they are responsible for their success and that good luck is not something that magically happens. They know that you have to earn the right to be successful. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill states, “You are the master of your destiny.” You can influence, direct, and control your own environment. You can make your life what you want it to be.

11. They have successful friends

According to Jim Rohn, you are the average of your five closest friends. Successful people know this, and that is why they keep company with mentors and other successful people. In Tribes by Seth Godin, you are encouraged to find your tribe and make a difference in all of your lives.

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12. They inspire others to be successful as well

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs had a way of helping others to cultivate their creativity. According to Steve Jobs, “Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it; they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after awhile.”

13. They have a consistent schedule

Rameet Chawla, founder of Fueled, believes a consistent schedule helps with prioritization and focusing on what is important. With a consistent schedule, you are better driven to achieve success.

 14. They have a detailed plan

Before leaving the office at night, Kenneth Chenault, CEO of American Express, writes down top three things he wants to accomplish the next day. He begins each day with this list.

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15. They never procrastinate or make excuses

Mark Twain once said, “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” Successful people do not take chances, they take action and get the tough assignments done first.

Featured photo credit: http://www.parade.com via parade.com

More by this author

Casey Imafidon

Specialized in motivation and personal growth, providing advice to make readers fulfilled and spurred on to achieve all that they desire in life.

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Last Updated on October 21, 2021

How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

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How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

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More Tips to Conquer Time Wasters and Procrastination

 

Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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