“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.”
Whether in business or life, there’s a fine line between success and failure. Booker T. Washington’s quote highlights the inevitability of obstacles on the path to success. In fact, I firmly believe success and failure go hand-in-hand. Those looking to succeed must first fail or learn from those who failed.
Successful individuals aren’t just born, there’s a lot more that goes into the equation. I’ve found those who are highly successful have a lot more in common than we may think. If you’re seeking success, these habits may come in handy.
1. Fail. No matter how hard you work, failure can and will happen. The most successful people understand the reality of failure, and its importance in finding success. Rather than running and hiding when you fail, embrace it. Learn from this mistake and you won’t fail in the same way again.
2. Set goals. Those who are successful set daily achievable goals. Find success by solidifying S.M.A.R.T. — smart, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely — goals. Stop juggling a mental to-do list of just long-term goals and establish small daily goals to achieve your vision.
3. Don’t rely on luck. Many relate success to being in the right place at the right time. While this is an element of success, there’s also the crucial involvement of blood, sweat, and tears. Don’t hold yourself back by waiting for the perfect timing or idea. Some of the most successful people got there by hitting the ground running, even if timing wasn’t perfect.
4. Track progress. Success comes from regularly monitoring behaviors, strategies, and tactics. How can you make adjustments if you don’t know how you’re doing? Hold yourself accountable by checking your progress as often as possible.
5. Act. Successful people don’t always know the right answer, but the keep moving anyway. Don’t let obstacles stall you when you’re searching for the right solution. Taking action will lead to answers.
6. Connect the dots. Those who are successful have the ability to see the greater picture. They identify and connect the tiny details to get there. Look at things in a “past, present, and future” context to receive favorable results.
7. Display realistic optimism. Those who succeed truly believe in their abilities. This respectfully drives them forward. Assess your abilities to gain a clear understanding of what you are able to accomplish. This will allow you balance yourself through the aid of find someone or something else.
8. Continued improvement. Successful people habitually thrive on self-improvement, whether it’s in terms of learning from mistakes or simply using their weaknesses as opportunities. Channel this habit by continually searching for ways to be better. Maybe your networking skills are rusty or you need some extra training — set goals for improving your weak spots.
9. Commit. Success doesn’t come without effort. The most successful individuals are often the most committed to what they’re working toward. Throw yourself into your tasks and go the extra mile every single day. Make no exceptions.
10. Be alert. A keen sense of awareness breeds success. If you’re not keyed into your environment, you’re sure to miss opportunities. Do you know what’s being said within your company, feedback from clients, or even in your entire industry?
11. Persevere. Truly successful people never give up. Do they ever fail? Yes. But as times get hard, their stamina to move forward doesn’t wane. Develop a willingness to work through the challenges you encounter along the way.
12. Communicate with confidence. Those who are successful have an ease for convincing others. They don’t manipulate or pressure, but logically explain the benefits. Communicating with confidence will allow you to more easily negotiate your visions.
13. Display humility. The most successful individuals lack an ego. It’s their fault when they fail. Hold yourself accountable for every aspect of your life by focusing on remaining focused and humble.
14. Be flexible. Plans may change. Successful people roll with the punches. Rather than getting frustrated, swiftly maneuver in another direction.
15. Make connections. Successful people often attribute their achievements to the help of others. You can’t and won’t be able to do this alone. Invest in generating mutually beneficial business connections and partners. Even if you have all the skills necessary to run your company, a business partner could complement your weaknesses.
Initiating these habits of successful people will fuel you on your search for achievement.