7 Critical Keys to Success
The keys to success in life are not dependent upon intelligence, social background or economic standing.
Instead, they are a result of many factors including willingness to adapt, a willingness to work and an unshakeable belief in oneself. In addition to these three important characteristics:
Here are 7 critical keys to success:
1. Build and maintain success habits. Indisputably, the most successful people in life have developed and continue to maintain good habits. These habits include: taking care of health both physical and mental; engaging in self-discipline and integrity, and upholding a productive attitude.
Interestingly, most successful people track their habits. Knowing where and how much time they spend on a particular habit helps them prioritize better and spend their time more wisely.
2. Set goals. Decide what you want and go after it! In order to get what you want in life you must set goals. In the course of setting your goals, devise an action plan and then resolve to accomplish something each day to move towards it.
As the famous eastern philosopher Lao Tzu put forth: "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
In 1970, Dr. Edward Banfield of Harvard University, after extensive studies on success and priority setting, wrote that the most important determinant of personal and financial success is having a "long-term perspective"(i.e. setting goals). He found that the longer a person took in planning and acting, the more likely it was that he/she would achieve personal and career success.
3. Learn from others. None of us has the time or will be around long enough to figure everything out for ourselves. There are so many wise and experienced teachers, both past and present, who have the expertise to guide us through our journey to success. Learn, read and study the works of others to enrich your own understanding of what you need to know in order to get where you want to be.
4. Be flexible. Rarely in life do things go according to plan, therefore cultivating psychological flexibility is a must for any type of success. On the road to success, it is crucial to be able to re-evaluate and re-adjust your plans when conditions for which you have no control over change.
To that end flexibility keeps you from getting stuck. It helps you brainstorm and opens you up to more possibilities and opportunities. It helps deal with change and uncertainty.
Indeed, there are many unpredictable and unforeseeable circumstances that present themselves on the road to success so the ability to be flexible is invaluable.
5. Believe in yourself. Unfortunately, when you don't believe in yourself and your potential, it is unlikely that anyone else will either. Unknowingly, negative thoughts you may have about yourself and your abilities reveal themselves in your behavior and body language. As a consequence, this tends to hinder your efforts.
Similarly, when you don't believe in yourself rather than controlling an event and your role in it, you become controlled by the circumstances.
Fortunately, there are many ways you can cultivate belief in yourself including remembering past accomplishments (we all have some), working hard, staying positive and understanding that success does not happen overnight.
6. Never give up. In the words of Winston Churchill; "Never, never, never give up!" Know that anything worthwhile is not easy to come by. More often than not, achieving success is an uphill battle of challenges, adversity and obstacles.
As I cite in my article, "The Power of Persistence," the important quote by Calvin Coolidge says it all:
"Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."
7. Be respectful and considerate of others. First of all, there is no substitute for the Golden Rule. Secondly, if we want to build or have success in any type of relationship, whether it's personal, business, or otherwise, we must respect and be considerate of others.
Certainly, no one wants to deal with a know-it-all, bully or self-centered person. Likewise, in any relationship there must be reciprocal giving, sharing and support. Indeed, good relationships are the hallmarks of a successful career and a well-balanced life.
The above 7 critical keys to success are fundamental to long term and sustainable success. Study, acquire, and practice them and you will be well on your way!
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