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21 Habits Of Successful Entrepreneurs That Everyone Should Learn

21 Habits Of Successful Entrepreneurs That Everyone Should Learn

What do Richard Branson (Virgin), Bill Gates (Microsoft), and Sara Blakely (Spanx) have in common besides being guests on Oprah? They all share these 21 admirable traits that I encourage you to adopt if you want to blaze your own path to financial freedom and happiness. (Hint- Oprah has them too!!!)

1. Fear Doesn’t Paralyze Them

Oprah says “I believe that one of life’s greatest risks is never daring to risk.” The feelings associated with fear are produced by chemicals released when are body goes into fight or flight mode. Entrepreneurs realize that there is no imminent danger, just huge potential for success when they feel this and it actually gets them motivated to move forward rather than paralyzing them.

2. They have a passion – making money is simply a byproduct

They all make money because they have found a unique way to solve their customer’s problem. None of them founded their company with a goal of getting rich. They had an idea. They had a plan that they followed. They know what the consumer wanted and delivered.

3. Entrepreneurs see failure as part of the path to success

They know that Henry Ford went bankrupt three times and that Coca-Cola only made $200 in their first year in business. They don’t see failure, they see failed attempt. Each failed attempt puts them closer to success.

4. Successful entrepreneurs surround themselves with a great team

They know their strengths and surround themselves with a team whose complimentary strengths make for a balanced workplace.

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5. They indulge themselves

Building in rewards on your path to success is not only a great motivator, but often by creating small goals along the path to the finish line, you actually gain momentum towards the end which is the exact opposite of how a race is typically won.

6. They’re intentional

Their actions are aligned with the intention behind their goal. This allows them to avoid being sidetracked along the way. Having a clear and specific intention allows your energy to flow.

7. They start before they are ready

This is Marie Forleo’s mantra. Why? Because when we wait the perfect time, we are waiting for an impossible thing. Nothing is ever perfect

8. They are the chess players and not the pawns

They make bold moves and plan for all eventualities. They control the game only because they have released their attachment to outcome. This allows for bold moves.

9. They don’t waste time on email and social media

They use communication methods to their advantage. It doesn’t zap their valuable time.

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10. They think outside the box

In the world today, the most successful billionaires have the same 24 hours and the same access to information as the rest of the planet. They set themselves apart by thinking differently than everyone else.

11. Their cup is always half full

Seeing opportunity in everything is a mindset not a personality trait. Successful people recognize their destructive thought patterns like self-doubt and hesitation and then they change them.

12. They take notes

Recognizing that they have very full lives, they take notes about anything that is not relevant to the task at hand and they return to it later. This organized focus allows creative multitasking without letting their work become scattered.

13. They work hard and play hard

For most successful entrepreneurs there is huge overlap between work and play. They know when to go hard and when to relax and rejuvenate.

14. They give useful feedback

Not only do they have a plan, they will listen to yours and give thoughtful advice. They know what they are good at and are generous in helping others to realize their dreams.

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15. They like getting feedback

Being in a small percentile of super successful people, they recognize that their brains work differently than other people’s and they go to others for input recognizing that many perspectives are needed.Even if they find more critics than supporters than aren’t dissuaded from an idea once they get started.

16. Entrepreneurs network constantly

You never know where the next fabulous partnership will be formed so networking is part of what they do at every wedding, school ceremony and business meeting. There is never a wrong time to make the right connection.

17. They ask lots of questions

They are naturally curious about how things work and how others think. Asking questions not only endears them as interested, it also allows them to steer conversation to where it is most useful for them.

18. They surround themselves with the best

This included everything from the best staff and office equipment to the best doctors and lawyers. Their belief that everyone in their life is the best at what they do attracts people who want to be at the top.

19. They are thankful

They recognize the good things in their life and are regularly thankful for them. This is the attitude of gratitude. In Oprah Winfrey’s words “What you focus on expands, and when you focus on the goodness in your life, you create more of it.”

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20. They don’t sound rehearsed

They got where they are by being in touch with what they have that the world needs. They speak about it from the heart and never sound like used car salesmen who have a rehearsed elevator pitch and closing argument.

21. Their self-worth doesn’t fluctuate with their bank balance

Think of Donald Trump- his bank balance has been up and down like an elevator but his confidence and self-worth stay constant.

Start channeling these habits until they are second nature. Acting successful ultimately leads to being successful.

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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