Success principles

Success principles August


‘Success is important only to the extent
that it puts one in a position to do more things one likes to do.’

Sarah Caldwell



You only get out what you put in
Life is simple. It is only as good as what you make it. You cannot experience life while sitting on the side lines. So breakthrough the crap, get off the fence and get in the game of life. Take control of your life and take action. The more energy, time, passion and excitement you put in, the more you get out of it!



Behave with 100% integrity
Integrity is regarded as ‘the honesty and truthfulness or accuracy of one’s actions.’ To have integrity, is to lead by example. In other words, don’t be double standard. Practice what you preach. It’s good for your karma.



Be a ‘Front Seater’
Successful people are always on the hunt for more knowledge. At success principle #92 we saw that attending seminars is one of the success principles. So what do you do when you attend those seminars? Are you a front-seater or a back seater? Those who sit right at the front almost always appear more confident. They also come prepared with notebooks and pens. At coffee- or lunch breaks these people make a bee-line for the presenter and ask questions. What does the crowd down the back do? Well, some have had enough and go home, others slip into a nearby bar for a drink and many race outside to get a quick-fix of nicotine. Don’t hide at the back of the class. There are already plenty of back-seaters. They’re everywhere in life, not just at seminars… Be a front-seater!



Make eye contact
Some people struggle to make eye contact with others. In fact it all has to do with really listening. During a conversation, if you focus completely on what that person is saying, you won’t have to worry about making eye contact correctly. If you are truly listening, you will just naturally focus your eyes on his/her eyes. Remember that maintaining eye contact is how you quietly prove to a person that you are interested in what s/he is saying. It’s a vital way to demonstrate respect.



Walk 25% faster
When you start to pursue your dreams and to live your life to the fullest, the best thing to have is an abundance of personal energy. Personal energy being that feeling that you are ready to take on anything. What good is it to have great personal goals if there is simply not enough energy to follow through with them? If you have that extra energy everything will become easier to do. A good way to raise your energy is to move to boost your metabolism. The more you move, the more energy you’ll have.



Stop all excuses!
‘My health isn’t good enough! I’m not intelligent or educated enough. I’m too old [or too young]. I’m just unlucky…’ The four most heard excuses. Just read the papers or surf the web! Somebody younger [or older] than you has just made it big. They even had less qualifications or were dyslexic. People have recovered from crippling illness to become world champions. What’s your big excuse? You live in the best age ever for anyone of any age, sex, race or location to succeed.



Speak up
Participate more in what’s going on around you. To be a true and authentic leader, you have to find your voice and speak your truth. Not what others think is important. Speaking up is a muscle that has to be exercised, so you just have to start. After all, if you want to lead others in a meaningful and purposeful way, they need to hear you. Until you speak your beautiful, authentic voice, you won’t know the impact you could have on others. So please speak up!



Be creative!
When something goes wrong most people can’t help dwelling on what’s gone wrong. Successful people [or those aspiring to be successful] however set their minds racing to see if they can find a way of the turning the problem round. They are thinking: ‘Is there an opportunity here?’ Curiously there usually is a solution if you only search hard enough. Think out of the box.



Move and sweat daily
Regular movement keeps you healthy and alert. It boosts energy and mood, and relieves stress.



Recognize a big chance
If you’re like most people, throughout your life a few great opportunities will land on your doorstep. And again, if you’re like most people, you’ll ignore these rare opportunities because you won’t recognize them as great chances for success. Don’t feel bad. Everybody misses a few, no one gets them all. Realize that opportunity doesn’t always knock. Sometimes it whispers. And how do you recognize a big chance? Does it sound like it could be a big idea? If no, don’t bother looking any further. If the answer is yes, accept the reality that it won’t be perfect. There will be obstacles between the current moment and achievement of the imagined goal. And timing is everything. Is right now the right time for this idea? There are a lot of great ideas that don’t become great opportunities until the time is right for them.



Marry the right person
This one decision will determine 50% of your happiness. As Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook puts it: ‘Your life partner is a career decision.’ Marry someone who will support your career aspirations, is proud of your successes and share 50/50 in the childcare and house care.



Learn by modeling
Modeling accelerates growth. Everything that you learned as a child was learned by modeling: walking, talking, writing. As grown ups we confuse modeling with comparison. Stop comparing yourself to others! You can always learn something of value. From anyone! Look around, identify in people the qualities that you most admire and then ask yourself: ‘How can I bring more of that quality into my life?’



Work at something you enjoy
And that is worthy of your time and talent. You’ve heard this career mantra before: ‘Do what you love and the money will follow.’ But as any aspiring poet or starving artist can tell you, it just isn’t that easy. Finding a way to do what you love and still make enough money to support a family can be a real challenge. Still, many experts say finding a way to follow your career bliss is worth the effort. People who do what they love for a living tend to live happier, more productive lives. And those who don’t are often made sick by working at jobs they hate.



Over deliver
That you make promises you can keep is common sense at it’s best. What about giving people more than they expect? Over deliver and wow your customers. It increases customer satisfaction and good word of mouth which leads to referrals. Remember: you can never add too much value for your customers. Watch out for under-promising, though. You’ve probably heard the ‘under-promise and over-deliver’ advice a zillion times. No one is getting excited about a weak promise. If your initial offer isn’t strong, you don’t stand out from the crowd. Promise bigger and better than your competition and then over deliver!



Be the most positive person you know
‘Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know’ ~H. Jackson Brown
Don’t be a grump in life! Mike sure that when people think of you they think of a positive and spirited person. Learn to show cheerfulness and enthusiasm [even when you don’t feel like it]. Always make the best of bad situations. You have the power to be the change you want to see in the world and make lemons to lemonade. Remember that your mind can only hold one thought at a time, so make it a positive and constructive one.



Be forgiving
When someone hurts you, you can hold on to anger, resentment and thoughts of revenge. Or you can embrace forgiveness and move forward. Be forgiving of yourself and others. Let go of grudges and bitterness. Move away from your role as victim and release the control that the person and situation have had over your life. Forgiveness leads to healthier relationship, greater spiritual and psychological well-being, less anxiety, stress and hostility, lower blood pressure and fewer symptoms of depression.



Be generous
Being generous begins with treating each person as though they have already achieved the potential for greatness that is in every one of us. It is in essence a sincere desire to make others’ lives easier or more pleasant. Remind yourself every day of the generosity you want to not only feel, but show. When interacting with others, notice the things you could do to make their lives easier or happier. Think of specific ways you can be good to the people you know. Extend this thoughtfulness to strangers, even if all you do is smile and say hello. Remember that generosity is not just a decision, its a lifestyle.



Persistence, persistence, persistence
Being persistent is a skill that can help you to reach a goal, to get what you desire. It can even be a means by which you assert yourself in the face of stubborn or difficult people. The application of persistence to any task, interaction or goal is what distinguishes between those who are successful and those who fail in any endeavor. Indeed, a lack of persistence or ‘giving up too soon’ is one of the most common reasons for failure.



What goes around comes around
Treat everyone you meet like you like to be treated, really is a good guide for life. Maybe you come across some really mean and inconsiderate people every day and it’s easy to get sucked in and start taking out your own aggressions out on others. However, this just creates an endless cycle of anger. Break the cycle and be the change you want to see in the world. Be kind to those that are unkind to you and show those around you that someone else’s problems don’t have to become yours. So no matter how much others try and bring you down, remember that you are a good and kind person that treats everyone with respect and dignity.



Save money
Discipline yourself to save money on even the most modest income. Managing money creates freedom. If you want to create financial abundance, you’ve got to start managing your money. The real trick to managing your money is not what you do, it’s how you do it. Make it a habit and a system. There is a very true wealth principle: the habit of managing your money is more important than the amount.



Commit to constant improvement
The key to long term success is to dedicate yourself to continuous improvement. If you become one tenth of one percent more productive each day, that amounts to one half of one percent more productive each week. One half of one percent more productive each week amounts to two percent more productive each month and 26% more productive each year. First, make a plan to become a little bit better every single day. Learn and apply one new idea each day to help you to become more productive and effective at your work. The effect will amaze you. Second, be patient. Don’t expect overnight changes or instant results. Become a little bit better each day and your future will take care of itself.



Don’t let fear hold you back
How often is fear holding you back from what you really want, in business, in your relationships, in your goals? Fear is the most paralyzing emotion going. Fear serves a useful purpose. It ensures us that we look at consequences before plowing ahead without consideration. It’s a protective instinct, but one that’s gotten out of hand in a society geared toward ‘success’. Allow yourself to dream big about what you want to achieve in your one life, and then give yourself permission to go for it all. Conquer your fears along the way!



Don’t underestimate yourself
Has someone ever warned you, ‘Don’t sell yourself short’? We all know that means that you are underestimating your abilities. That your level of confidence is lower that it should be. Most people are capable of more than they imagine. We all have fears and concerns when we try something new. The problem is the older we grow, the more doubts we have. When you underestimate yourself, you really limit your life experiences. You hold yourself back from accomplishing your goals, and you find reasons to talk yourself out of doing the things that interest you. Reconsider your options, look at your situation in a more positive light, and just go for it. Don’t underestimate yourself!



Value your closest relationships
Understand that happiness is not based on possessions, power or prestige but on relationships with the people you love and respect. The quality of your life is closely tied to the quality of your closest relationships. Your actions and words need to send an unmistakable message to those people that they really do matter to you. One of the most common problems in relationships is that people just assume that their friend, mate, partner, or children somehow ‘know’ how valued they are. They don’t! A meaningful relationship does not happen by accident, it needs to be built and maintained. A close relationship deserves your time and energy. If you take a relationship for granted, sooner or later it will fall apart.



Be loyal
We live in a world where selfishness seems to be the rule of the day, and personal gain the objective of most relationships. One of the most honorable character traits a person can develop is the ability to be loyal, whether to family, friends, an employer, or clubs and organizations to which we may belong. Loyalty is the hallmark of great leadership. Loyalty is a lasting measure of excellence. Leadership that puts the welfare of employees, customers and suppliers before personal gain. And that selflessness of a company, putting people and principles ahead of profit, is the surest way to be successful these days.



Be honest
Sometimes you have to be brave and be unfearlessly honest in saying ‘I don’t know this’, or ‘I’m worried I won’t be able to do that’, or ‘That makes me uncomfortable’. Then you can be brave enough to move into that awkward space of exploring and trying something new. The ‘novice phase’ of true growth. Then you can be brave enough to keep going when you’re in that ‘not-good-at-it-yet’-part of learning new things and you will eventually break through. Break through into new knowledge, new capability, a new and bigger comfort zone. For a leader in the 21st century, that’s critical.



Be decisive
Being decisive means to be able to quickly make a decision to do something, or not to do something, even if the choices are ambiguous and all of the facts are not yet known. An example of being decisive in ordinary life is that a decisive person can order a meal quickly even if the menu is very long while others sit and read the menu again and again and can’t make up their mind. Successful people are very good at making decisive decisions. It allows them to act and do while others would only think and do nothing. You can start to become a decisive person by making a decisive decision right now to stop being indecisive. To be decisive be informed, get clarity, understand the problem, consider the pros and cons of alternative choices and trust your gut to make the right decision.



Stop blaming others
We like being the victims. We like having the option of blaming someone for the problems we’re facing. Blaming others robs you of the power that you truly possess. When you blame others for the circumstances in your life, you place the control and responsibility for your life in their hands. As long as you blame others for where you are in life, you are powerless to transition to the place you are destined to be. The day you stop blaming others is the day you begin to discover who you really are.



Be bold and courageous
When you look back on your life you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the things you did. It truly takes faith and courage to step out and live your dreams and your destiny. When you make a decision to walk in purpose you will inevitably face obstacles and challenges. But remember, the mere fact that you have a desire is an indication that you are already equipped to accomplish the dream! So go ahead today and manifest your greatness!



Accept not being liked
‘Learning to withstand criticism is a necessity for women.’ ~Arianna Huffington
Don’t sacrifice being successful for being liked. Unfortunately, you may have to develop a bit of a tough shell. Especially women who are strong and ambitious can are sometimes viewed as unlikable or worse, the dreaded, ‘B’-word.



Take notes!
Keep a notebook with you at all times. If you wake up at 3 a.m. with a brilliant idea, write it down. A blank notebook becomes a suggestion box for your brain, opening you up to new ideas. Aristotle Onassis, the legendary Greek shipping tycoon, gave this advice: ‘Always carry a notebook. Write everything down. When you have an idea, write it down. When you meet someone new, write down everything you know about them. That way you will know how much time they are worth. When you hear something interesting, write it down. Writing it down will make you act upon it. If you don’t write it down you will forget it.’

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