Persistence is the ability to continue to get up no matter how many times you’ve been knocked down. It requires will power, flexibility, strength of character, determination and a desire to succeed at all costs.
If there was one common denominator that could be applied to successful people, it would be persistence.
The value of persistence lies in maintaining your goal while re-positioning yourself to get there without continually hitting your head against a brick wall.
So, what can you do to maintain persistence?
Here are 8 tips to help you persist and achieve your goals:
1. Maintain your Vision
Decide what you want out of life, and then work with a vision for the future. Keep your goal firmly planted in the front of your mind so that every action step you take will lead you closer to achieving what you want.Explore the possibilities and much more!
2. View Setbacks as Life Lessons
Nobody achieves their goals with one straight shot at the target. Understand there will be setbacks, failures and mistakes but don’t let a negative or sideways step move you off the path.
Mistakes are merely “life lessons” so view each backward or sideways step as an opportunity to learn.
3. Act with Courage
Don’t allow fear of failure to stop you. As human beings, we all fail from time to time. It’s the winners who get back up and start again. Act with courage and determination to achieve the things you want in life.
4. No doesn’t mean “No”
There will always be those who will try to discourage and dishearten you. There will also be those who say “No”.
“No” isn’t a personal affront. Nor does it mean “Stop”. “No” may simply mean “this doesn’t suit me right now” or “I’d rather do it a different way”.
If you hit a brick wall of “No’s”, simply back-track and find a new and brighter path to travel to reach your destination.
5. Exert Control over your Actions
Make a conscious decision to make every step count. Keep your vision clear in your mind at all times so that your actions become a part of the process to get you where you want to go.
6. Think Creatively
Often we become so fixed on the goal, we forget that other options exist. Be prepared for the fact that not only will the road to achieving your goals take a number of unexpected turns, the goal posts may shift too. Allow yourself to stay flexible and understand that what you originally envisioned may alter to become a fresher, more realistic outcome.
7. Believe in Yourself
Have faith in the fact you will achieve your goal, no matter what circumstances or situations arise. When times get tough – and they usually will – keep your focus clear and don’t get bogged down in “I can’t” or “I won’t”.
8. Pick a Support Team
You don’t have to do it alone. Gather a team of family and friends who you know you can count on to offer your support and guidance when the going gets tough. There is nothing like a friendly pat on the back to keep you going when you feel you’ve given as much as you have to give.
This voice taunts you whenever you set a goal. It criticizes you when life gets difficult. It beats you down when you struggle to stand up against its running commentary.
You know you shouldn’t let self-doubt bother you, but it’s a sneaky critter. Sometimes, you just can’t contain it and it slips past your barriers.
And self-doubt is greedy. When it’s loose, it devours your confidence, strips logic and reason from your mind, and steals happiness from your heart. In return, it leaves you with only fear and insecurity.
You try to remove self-doubt by forcing yourself to “think positive,” which usually doesn’t work as well as you think it should.
The more you fight your self-doubt, the more it fights back. However, with self-knowledge and understanding, you can use self-doubt for your benefit.
A Story about Crushing Dreams and “Being Realistic”
When I was a child, I was in love with drawing. For me, drawing was as exciting as going to the playground.
At some point in my childhood, I decided I’d become an artist of some kind. But the critics in my life were quick to cut me down. I’ll bet you’ve heard the same kind of clichés:
“Art is great but not a ‘realistic’ future goal. While it’s a nice hobby to have, you can’t really make a living out of it. You’ll just be another starving artist.”
As children, we internalize these negative messages and parrot them back. If the adults say so, it must be true, right? By adulthood, every time we have a small hope, we’re the first to snuff it out:
“Drawing is nice but not necessary. I’ll never be as good as the real professionals anyway. I don’t even have a degree from an accredited art school.”
For years I stopped myself before I even tried. I did it because I was afraid.
I was afraid of what people would say. I was afraid everyone would hate my art. I was afraid of failing as an artist.
When fear grabs you, your beloved goal forever feels out of reach. But it doesn’t just stop there, does it?
If left unchecked, the infectious bite of fear and self-doubt can spread. You unconsciously start questioning your knowledge and abilities in everything you do. And if you’re like me, you desperately want to find a cure.
Attitude. It’s a common word. I love its mystique. It should be an all-the-time thing, but people who think they have a good one often slip at the first hint of trouble. The others, who maintain a good one with regularity, are likely getting help from attitude’s brethren of the faith variety. All will always turn out well.
Attitude is also similar in nature to self-esteem. Someone can’t give it to you. You have to build it on your own. It’s lonely and self-taught.
Think positively. This might be easier for me to type than for you to do. Start small. Repeat. Think back on your life. Have you, for the most part, been successful? If so, why would you allow the thought of some fictitious improbable future prevent you from thinking positively at this moment? It’s actually more likely that all will turn out well. Try it. It works.
Slow down the speed of your emotions. When you catch yourself thinking negatively, take a deep breath. You need to practice becoming mindful of your racing thoughts because your automatic thinking and behaviors have unfortunately become automatic.
The environment you build for yourself…
Set goals high and monitor progress instead of specific results. Being realistic never changed anything. Being “unrealistic” does. Set goals for yourself that are higher than you can imagine. This might sound contrary to breeding positivity and it will be if all you focus on are the outcomes of your attempts. Enjoy the journey along the way and pay attention to what you’re accomplishing as opposed to the target goal you set for yourself. It’s the one time I suggest you look back in proportion to looking forward. Get into process and out of outcome. Read Out of Reach But in Sight: Using Goals to Achieve Your Impossible.
Make sure you can commit. Setting high goals is ridiculous if you can’t commit to working toward and achieving them. This exercise also involves determining the things in your life you will need to sacrifice to achieve what you want.
Behavior plays a key part…
Don’t ever give up—being true to yourself. Let’s get something straight. Winners quit. They quit the right things at the right times. They also choose the right things to start and focus only on those things. That’s why you wouldn’t consider thinking of them as quitters. If you’ve entangled yourself in something that isn’t your passion, be true to yourself and find something else that is. It’s your life. You’re only lying to yourself if you continue doing something you don’t want to.
Make no excuses. You are a victim of your own vibration. You are accountable for everything you do and everything that happens to you. Accept it. Own it. If you ignored the other thirteen items in this post, this one alone will carry you to the right place.
Surround yourself with the right people. You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Do the math. Relationships are meant to empower you and should never victimize you. If any relationship isn’t helping you become who you want to be, walk away. Speaking of…
Avoid the wrong people. I call this addition by subtraction. It’s different than surrounding yourself with the right people and a little more painful.
A healthy mindset gives you stylish rose-colored glasses…
Be grateful. It’s impossible to have a bad attitude when you have gratitude. Be grateful for everything you have because there are people who will never have what you have today.
Believe. Whether you think you can or can’t, you’re right. Whether you think you will or won’t, you’re right. I’ve never met a person I didn’t believe in and I know more people than anyone I know. If I believe in you, you should too.
Have faith. Pair faith with belief and all will turn out well. I pinky swear.
Plan, do, learn, fix, and repeat…
Prepare for the best, worst, and everything in between. You’ll sleep better at night knowing you have all contingencies covered.
Learn. Your life will never get easier, but I assure you, you will get wiser. You might as well enjoy the getting wiser part.
Since ancient times, society has always praised winners. Winning is and has become the central core of society , and everything that we do revolves around this one dynamic. And I just want to add a favorite quote “Winners never quit and quitters never win”.
Victory tastes very sweet and there are many advantages to winning, as the harder the win was, the sweeter the taste of victory is. You start feeling better about yourself and you improve your confidence, you boost up your morale and your desire to win, becomes greater than the fear of losing.
So you ask how to become a winner? Here you go – 9 killer tips to become a winner in life.
1. Set up specific goals, you need to know where you are going.
Imagine you are in a race, but you don’t know where is the finishing line, would you be able to win? No, you wouldn’t. That’s why you need a specific target, you need to know exactly what direction are you going in, and where the finishing line is. And learn to work towards something rather than working aimlessly.
2. You need to learn to take responsibility for your actions
You can’t blame others for your mistakes, and you can’t useexcuses. Winners are people that are self aware about their own mistakes, they understand that it’s their choices and decisions that brought them there. Winners don’t use excuses, they find solutions.
3. Form a winning habit
Strange right? But that’s what you have to do. You have to form a winning habit, and habits are hard to develop. To form a winning habit, you need to start looking things at a different perspective, you have to look at them like challenges. You should try to challenge yourself daily, form a habit of doing every day something you couldn’t do before.
You shouldn’t be afraid to fail, what you should do is learn to accept your failures as a lesson. You shouldn’t let failing demotivate you, you should get the best out if it, and that’s the lesson and you should use that lesson as a guide to help you win next time.
5. Be eager to learn every day
Try to learn something new every day, read a book or meet new people or do something different. Because when it comes to winning, having more knowledge is basically power.
6. Take risks
Don’t be afraid of taking a risk. Because if you are too cautious, you might miss the opportunity and you might not have a second one.
7. Stay focused
Keeping your focus towards the finishing line is what matters. Don’t slack, always keep your mind and focus towards your goal. Because if you are not focused, then you are not doing things seriously! And if you are not doing things seriously you can’t become a winner guys.. It’s simple!
8. Visit motivationgrid.com every day (joking) ! Be committed
The main difference between losers and winners is that winners are committed to winning. Winners know what they want and therefore do whatever they have to do, to get there. You need to stay dedicated in order to become a winner in life.
9. You have to be willing to work harder than others
And in the end it all comes to working hard. Let me give you an example with sports – If your competition is doing 200 push ups every day, you have to do 300. Don’t forget that the more effort you put, the better results you will have, and that’s not only in sports, it applies to all fields of life.
A mix of hard work and determination can get you anything in life.
Success is a mind game. If you don’t believe this, take a look around.
There are a whole lot of people who have extraordinary talent, passion and mad skills but they aren’t killing it in business or winning in the game of life. Do you know a gifted web designer or coach who’s barely making ends meet?
Maybe you’re friends with an incredibly smart and driven entrepreneur who can’t pay the rent. Maybe that talented but not very successful person is you. You could be thinking, “I know I have the skills to succeed but I have no idea how I’m going to pay the bills this month.”
When it comes to rising to the top, talent, skills and passion are just part of the game plan. The rest? It’s all about your mindset.
Here are 4 of the most powerful mindset traits successful people share. Check them out. Then play up the ones you have and work on the ones you don’t.
You’re all set to achieve your goals. You’re driven and you’re geared up. You don’t mind doing the work to get there. In fact you’re looking forward to it.
So, when exciting projects and collaborations enter your radar, you say yes…to all of them. You think being successful is about having a bunch of amazing projects going at the same time. I hate to be the one to tell you this but that’s not true.
Truly successful people are very careful about choosing the projects they’re going to work on. Their main focus is to follow through and finish what they start. No matter how good the project, no matter how great the idea, you won’t see results or massive forward movement in your life and business if you never finish what you start.
Remember: going all out for one or two good projects beats going halfway on a hundred great projects. Always.
Success Mindset Trait #2: Go for Growth
In her book “Mindset: Changing the Way You Think to Fulfil Your Potential”, Stanford University Psychologist Dr. Carol S. Dweck explains that successful people have a growth mindset.
A growth mindset arises from the belief that achieving success is about continuous, consistent improvement. If you have a growth mindset you see success as a journey rather than a destination. This means you’re always open to learning and improving until you achieve your goals.
Successful people have a growth mindset and they’re happy to keep trying until they get what they want. They’re willing to try all kinds of strategies and techniques because they know they’ll eventually get them where they want to go… And they’re right.
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This one’s about checking your negative beliefs at the door. You need to believe you can succeed before you do because your beliefs influence your outer behaviours and actions.
When you have a strong belief in your ability to succeed, you’ll naturally direct your focus toward solutions rather than problems. If your beliefs about yourself and your ability to hit your goals are negative, it’s almost impossible to achieve what you set out to do.
Even if you manage to get to your goal, the road to success will be a very steep all-uphill climb. Every win will feel like a hard won war. Every obstacle will feel insurmountable. Most people give up long before they get to the top.
Successful people avoid this pitfall because they can take forward actions that are consistent with their positive inner beliefs. They’re able to get up off the couch and take the right actions that help them become super achievers. Those who don’t believe they can handle obstacles won’t even try. They lose even before the game begins.
Successful people understand who they are. They know their goals and dreams inside and out. They know their values, their skills and their abilities. They are also incredibly clear about their weaknesses. They don’t try to be amazing at everything and they don’t try to be someone they’re not.
If you can’t stand parties and networking events, maybe staying at home and connecting via online events might be best for you. If you know you can’t navigate the uncertainty of entrepreneurship, maybe work for someone you like and trust that it’s the path which will bring you the most joy and fulfilment.
High achievers never forget that their mindset is where it’s at when it comes to achieving ongoing success.
When you make an effort to work on your mindset, all your other incredible personality traits and skills will come together to propel you to your destination.
And the added benefit? You’ll have a lot more fun getting there.
Change your mindset, change your life. It sounds so easy, yet many of us tell ourselves it’s too late to change careers or that we don’t have enough time to learn something new. Living with these limiting beliefs creates a self-fulfilling prophecy: we believe we can’t, so we don’t. If we instead lived in terms of “I can” and “I will”, imagine what we could achieve!
I believe our thoughts have incredible power over our everyday lives, and that our moods and behaviors are a reflection of how we think. Over the years, I’ve developed 7 hacks to ensure I’m always in the right frame of mind to be successful and happy — and it starts with imagining possibilities instead of focusing on roadblocks.
Anyone can transform their mindset and learn to ask “Can You Imagine?” too. Here are the 7 mindsets of highly successful (and happy) people.
Let’s say you feel like you’re not getting ahead at work. A fixed mindset says the situation is the way it is, and it will never change no matter what you do. A growth mindset says you can create change if you work hard, adapt to feedback and implement strategies for personal development. It goes without saying which type of people go further in their careers.
It comes down to the difference between limiting and empowering beliefs. If you believe your growth is confined to its current state indefinitely, you’re unlikely to develop. But if you start to believe in your capacity to achieve greatness, you’ll find that everything in your life will follow suit.
2. Adopt An Abundance Mentality, Not Scarcity Mentality
About 6 years into 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, my top employee resigned. This wouldn’t have been the end of the world … except he was leaving to start a competing junk removal business. At first, I was gutted — then, I wanted revenge. I became obsessed with shutting his business down, to the detriment of my own company.
Now I know that I was stuck in a scarcity mentality: I thought there was only enough success for one of us. I’ve since learned that this kind of thinking breeds a culture of paranoia where everyone lives in fear. Now, our company thrives on an abundance mentality: we believe that everyone benefits when we share ideas, even with the competition. By recognizing that there’s more than enough success to go around, we’ve freed ourselves from limitations.
3. Stop Fearing Failure. Instead, Be Willing to Fail
The number one reason entrepreneurs don’t succeed is because they’re afraid to fail — that fear can even keep them from starting something in the first place.
The fact is, no one ever fell to the top of the mountain; you can’t reach the peak unless you take the first step. We believe in the philosophy WTF (Willing to Fail) because the only way to grow is to make mistakes. Risk is scary, but stagnation is worse — and the more you believe you’ll fail, the more likely it is that you will. Remember: if you’re not progressing then you’re failing anyway, so you’re better off taking the chance.
4. Create a Long-Term Vision Instead of Only Short-Term Goals
You can’t reach a destination if you don’t know where you’re going. Same goes if you’re climbing the corporate ladder, switching jobs, or starting a new business. Before you can create a strategy and set your short-term goals, you first need to write a long-term vision of success.
I’ve always been more concerned with where our company is going than how we’ll get there. I’m a visionary entrepreneur, so for me, it’s not a matter of blindly putting one foot in front of the other — it’s about shooting for the moon and working backwards to bring our vision safely back to earth. We call our vision our Painted Picture: a crystal-clear snapshot of how our business will look, feel and act every five years. It’s a way of keeping everyone aligned and motivated to succeed as a team.
Growing up, I was a bit of a rebel. But despite what my parents and teachers told me, this didn’t hold me back. If anything, my affinity for troublemaking made me a better entrepreneur.
Risk-averse people who stay in their comfort zones rarely lead the pack. It’s the people who move fast, break things and defy convention who change the world. Success is all about grit, guts and gumption — so if you want to progress your career, you better get comfortable colouring outside the lines.
INSTANT, FREE ACCESS to Loral Langemeier’s New York Times bestselling ebook. The Millionaire Maker!
After twenty-eight years in business, I’ve learned how important it is to make quick (and tough) decisions, and that to get ahead you need to avoid unproductive indecisiveness. Stop letting your lizard brain control your thoughts and actions — instead, take charge and start acting on instinct. In most cases, your intuition will steer you in the right direction.
7. Let Positivity Flow Into Everything You Do
If you’re only going to change one thing about the way you think, this should be it. It’s scientifically proven that optimists are happier and more successful than pessimists (provided they’re realistic about goals and outcomes). As an eternal optimist, I always try to see the good in every situation. If we’re falling short on some aspect of the business, I don’t see it as impending doom — I know it’s only a temporary obstacle we need to overcome.
The best part is that positivity breeds positivity; when you adopt a glass-half-full attitude, it will start to guide everything you do. The truth is success doesn’t automatically bring happiness — but a positive frame of mind will invite success into your life. All it takes is a few simple tweaks to your thinking to become your happiest, most fulfilled self.
The late Zig Ziglar was one of the most respected modern day experts on success, motivation, and leading a balanced life. In his book Born to Win!, he argues that success cannot be defined in one sentence, but instead it is comprised of many things. One could argue that the definition depends on the individual and that one size does not fit all.
Here are 19 different definitions of success. Not all of these will resonate with you, but chances are at least a few of them will. Use these or find inspiration here to create your own definition of success that can be applied to your unique life.
Success can be achieved when you try your best in all aspects of everything you do, even if that doesn’t lead to big results. If you’ve done your best, you should feel proud of your efforts.
2. Success is setting concrete goals.
Be realistic and concrete when setting goals. Success does not come from setting abstract goals. If you know where you’re heading, that is a success in itself, even if you don’t ultimately arrive to the planned destination.
3. Success is having a place to call home.
Home is where your heart soars. You are always successful when you can call a place home. Home doesn’t have to be a specific structure. It can be a country, a city, or even a person. If you have a place you feel comfortable and safe, you’re already achieving something great.
4. Success is understanding the difference between need and want.
If you can meet your monthly obligations and fulfill your basic needs, you are successful. Being able to identify when you absolutely need something and when you can do without it often leads to financial stability and is a great way to succeed.
5. Success is believing you can.
If you believe you can, you will succeed. Self-belief doesn’t come naturally to everyone, so if you’re able to tell yourself that you can achieve the goals in your plans, you’re doing great.
6. Success is remembering to balance work with passion.
Work without passion creates undue stress and empty achievements. Focus on what excites you. If you’re happy at your job, that’s great. However, even if you aren’t, you can balance your formal job with hobbies or volunteer work you’re passionate about.
7. Success is taking care of your needs.
Remember to put on your own oxygen mask before assisting others. Self-care is essential if you want to have any meaningful impact on the world around you.
8. Success is learning that you sometimes have to say no.
Success only comes with a balanced life. Part of balance is learning to say no. Saying no doesn’t mean you are selfish; it simply means you have priorities and know what you need to give your attention to at any given time.
9. Success is knowing your life is filled with abundance.
Love, health, friends, family…life is filled with abundance. Recognizing this is an important step to feeling grateful for all life has given you. If you can feel this, you are already experiencing success.
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10. Success is understanding you cannot keep what you don’t give away.
You will only succeed if you help others succeed. Learning to give instead of always take is part of creating a world we all want to live in. When you help others, you will also create an environment where others want to help you.
11. Success is overcoming fear.
Conquering a fear makes you feel invincible. Even if it’s confronting just one small fear each week, that is certainly something to feel proud of. The bigger fears will take more time, but any work you do to overcome fear will lead to success.
Successful people understand that learning never stops. Take time each day to converse with someone with opposing views, read an interesting article on a topic you know little about, or watch a TED talk on new research. It doesn’t take long to learn, so get started now.
13. Success is learning that losing a few battles can help you win a war.
Successful people choose their battles wisely. When you know which battles will ultimately help you achieve your goals, you will be successful.
14. Success is loving and being loved back.
Opening your heart to others is difficult and can produce fear. Having the courage to love and accept love from others is a step toward a fulfilling life and great success.
15. Success is standing your ground when you believe in something.
Successful people never give up on things they believe with all their heart. You may hold views that many people disagree with, but if you’ve done your research and know that it’s the right belief for you, you shouldn’t let it go without a fight.
16. Success is not giving up.
Perseverance creates grit, and grit achieves success. Even if it takes years to achieve a goal, persisting is key if you want success.
When you feel like giving up, remind yourself what you’re fighting for. As long as you have a strong “why” you will be able to persist.
Anytime a goal is reached or an obstacle is overcome, take time to celebrate, even if it’s something small. All goals require smaller objectives to be achieved first, so each time you complete one, take time to appreciate the work you put into it.
18. Success is never letting a disability hold you back.
Disabilities do not define a person’s success. The body and mind will compensate. Just because you can’t do absolutely everything doesn’t mean you can’t do something. Do what your body and mind allow and always push yourself. That is true success.
19. Success is understanding that you control your destiny.
Your destiny is controlled by you and you alone. Take responsibility for your actions and their consequences and you’ll find that you naturally become more successful.
The Bottom Line
Success can be defined in many ways. If you are experiencing happiness, love, or adventure in this moment, you’ve already found success. Keep it up.
But like financially illiterate individuals can’t understand how to become wealthy, or health-illiterate individuals can’t understand how to lose weight, success can look impossible to achieve.
But success — true, lasting success — is within your grasp. It is possible. It is available, to every person, at this moment.
Right now, you can make a decision to become a student of success. You can start on a journey that will take you to a future where everything you want is possible.
The principles to get there aren’t easy, but they are simple.
If you want to achieve true, lasting success in your life — the kind of success that will be the foundation for your life’s legacy — you need to master these 14 principles first.
1. Most People Will Never Be Successful.
“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don’t wish it were easier; wish you were better.” -Jim Rohn
Sadly, although anyone can choose to become successful, most people never will.
This is because when it comes down to the final word, most people will choose comfort over growth. Ultimately, they see the price for true success and say, “no thanks.”
This is one of the most important characteristics of the “mediocre majority” — they are unwilling to trade comfort and stability for the pain of wild growth.
Success costs you.
To reach higher function, you must be willing to become a child again, to learn and grow in new avenues. You must constantly be willing to become a small fish in a big pond again.
Most people simply aren’t willing.
The simple truth is, everyone could become healthy, happy, and fulfilled, starting right now, as you’re reading this. It is a choice that is available at all times. Yet, most people never take it.
In the words of Warren Buffet: “That’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can do it, but I guarantee not many of you will do it.”
The choice to become 100% financially independent is available now.
The choice to have extremely rewarding and intimate relationships with your friends and family is available now.
The choice to become fit, active, and healthy is available now.
The choice to experience intense and complete emotional healing is available now.
But most people won’t take it.
Each of these avenues has a high cost. They require you to change your life. To shed old habits and adopt new ones. To sever ties with toxic individuals. To admit “I don’t know.”
Benjamin Hardy put it this way: “Anything is possible if you are willing to pay the price.”
Many people make these decisions every day, and change the trajectory of their lives, and their family’s lives, forever.
But many, many more people never make this choice.
They continue to live in ordinary, average lives, just like everyone else around them.
And in the words of Seth Godin:
“Is there a difference between ‘average’ and ‘mediocre?’ Not so much.”
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2. Evolving is Painful. That’s Why Most People Don’t Do It.
“Arrogant or critical people are often people with low self-esteem who are afraid of taking risks. That’s because if you learn something new, then you are required to make mistakes in order to fully understand what you have learned.” -Robert Kiyosaki, Rich Dad Poor Dad
Evolving is painful.
Becoming a better version of yourself requires time, energy, humility, and study.
Evolving means constantly becoming a child again. You must become a young, teachable student again, over and over.
You must constantly be admitting, “I don’t know.”
There is so much you don’t know that will be revealed to you over the course of your studies and self-discovery. And the most helpful way to “grease the wheels” of this journey is to remain humble and open to correction and teaching.
The worst thing you can do is insist you already know everything.
Michelin-star chef Gordon Ramsay had a show called Kitchen Nightmares where he would audit a struggling restaurant’s food processes.
There was a particular episode where a failing restaurant was led by a stubborn and arrogant chef who refused to change his menu or learn new tricks.
Ramsey came in and began cooking marvelous new dishes for the restaurant. He prepared a particular sea bass dish for the owners, which they loved.
However, the chef refused to try the dish. “I already know what sea bass tastes like,” he argued dismissively. “I’ve been cooking for 38 years.”
Instead of learning a free, valuable lesson from a world-class expert, this man chose pride over growth.
This is how most people react to criticism — defensiveness and immaturity.
Instead of humbly admitting they don’t know everything and gratefully accepting wisdom and teaching from experts, they choose pride and stagnation over humility and massive growth.
Evolving is painful. Most people simply choose not to do it.
But once you decide to become someone who is open to correction and teaching, you become an unstoppable force.
If you shift your mindset into being an open, thirsty mind that is hungry for knowledge (and humble enough to accept correction), you’ll become more capable than 90% of the population to achieve massive success.
The ancient stoic philosophers like Marcus Aurelius, Seneca, and Epictetus all ascribed to learning how to turn challenges into triumphs.
It was Aurelius, emperor of Rome who first penned the thought, “the obstacle is the way.”
Aurelius had to deal with problems you and I don’t typically face — assassination attempts, betrayals by his top advisors, and the incessant efforts of his enemies to overthrow Rome.
What he learned through all of this was not to run from problems; in fact, they are exactly where you should go.
It is through solving difficult problems and overcoming frustration and fear that allows you to develop patience, poise, and peace in the most dire of circumstances.
The reason so many NFL teams, CEO’s, and personal development coaches have been studying the philosophy of Stoicism in recent years is because solving these obstacles directly (instead of running away) is exactly how to become a stronger, faster, smarter, and more poised person.
Becoming successful often means an entire transformation in many parts of your life. The relationships, finances, health, and personal habits of successful people often look radically different the the average person’s.
This change is difficult. Evolving is painful, so most people don’t do it.
But for those who truly desire to become successful, the obstacle — fear of rejection, frustration, setbacks, anger, impatience…
This is exactly where you need to focus your efforts.
“You can either step forward into growth, or backwards into security.” -Abraham Maslow
Growth means learning. It means working, doing, creating, resisting, failing.
Comfort means safety. It means stability, protection, pleasure, and feeling good.
Growth cannot happen as long as you choose comfort over learning. Growth and evolution are incubated in pain and discomfort.
Most people choose comfort over pain, and so remain in average, mediocre lives.
If you want to succeed and experience true, lasting success, you need to know that all the necessary growth and evolution you must experience cannot happen while you’re comfortable.
There is so much you need to know and need to learn. The path to success is paved with obstacles that can only be overcome by reading books, gaining mentors, failing and trying again, and learning from your mistakes.
These cannot happen if you continue to mindless numb yourself through TV and drugs, sleep in longer than you should, or cling to what is “easy” instead of what is “challenging.”
Growth and comfort cannot co-exist.
If you want to become a new, better, healthier, richer, stronger, smarter person, it cannot be achieved while you choose comfort over growth.
5. Becoming Extraordinary Means Giving Up a “Normal” Life.
“If you want to live an exceptional and extraordinary life, you have to give up many of the things that are part of a normal one.” -Srinivas Rao
If you want to experience true success and become extraordinary, it means you must give up many parts of a “normal” life.
Nowadays, “normal” means a lot of things.
“Normal” means buying things you don’t need to impress people you don’t like with money you don’t have.
“Normal” means binge-eating an entire pizza while binge-watching an entire season of a TV show.
“Normal” means sleeping in as late as you can. It means doing what others tell you to do. It means following conventional advice, never leaving the safety of the herd.
Normal is “the way things have always been done.”
But “extraordinary” is something quite different.
If you want to live an extraordinary life, that means you’ll have to start acting very differently from how everyone else is.
One of the most basic tenets of becoming extraordinary is simply having the courage to go against the tide.
In the words of Benjamin P. Hardy, “Ordinary people seek entertainment. Extraordinary people seek education and learning.”
Extraordinary means buying books, online courses, and conference memberships instead of buying alcohol, doodads, and luxuries you don’t even need.
Extraordinary means saying “no” to merely good opportunities and waiting for the truly great ones.
Extraordinary means investing your money in assets, not liabilities. The wealthy don’t become wealthy by sitting on their hands — they spend enormous amounts of time becoming extremely financially literate and make their money work for them.
Extraordinary means becoming fit and healthy so your body and mind are able to function at extremely high levels so you can produce work that can truly change the world.
Extraordinary means devoting the majority of your time learning and investing in personal development.
Most people don’t prioritize the characteristics of the extraordinary lifestyle. Being extraordinary means doing things others won’t.
“Would you be as successful if you followed all the rules and always behaved and never took chances? No, you’d be just like everyone else, scared about failing and worried about being liked.” -Tim Grover, personal trainer of Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant
6. Willpower Doesn’t Work.
“Most people approach goals and personal improvement the hard way. Rather than changing their environment, they strive to overcome their current environment.” –Benjamin P. Hardy
Most people are terrible at achieving goals.
As much at 92% of people give up on their New Year’s resolutions just a few weeks into January.
When asked, most overweight and broke people declare they would like to become fit and financially successful.
But they continue in their unhealthy habits and foolish financial decisions.
Most people are terrible at achieving goals because they rely on willpower to do so.
A simple secret about success is that willpower doesn’t work.
According to the latest psychological research, your willpower is like a muscle. The more you use it, the more tired it gets. Essentially, willpower is a finite resource that becomes depleted with use.
As a result, your willpower is nearly gone by the end of your long, strenuous days. Suddenly, you don’t even stand a chance resisting that junk food and watching TV.
Commitment is something entirely different. Commitment goes above and beyond your energy, stamina, or how you feel, even after an extremely strenuous day.
If you’re truly committed to something, in your mind, it’s as though you’ve already succeeded. All doubt and disbelief are gone.
“When you commit to an enormous goal that far exceeds your current capability, willpower won’t solve your problem. Rather, you’ll need a new environment that organically generates your goals — a context that forces you to become more than you currently are. Once you design the right conditions, your desired behavior naturally follows.” -Benjamin Hardy
As long as you rely on willpower alone to accomplish your goals, you will never succeed on truly enormous levels.
It is only through an unwavering commitment to a new lifestyle that truly allows you to accomplish extraordinary things.
7. Consistency Beats Intensity.
“Long-term consistency beats short-term intensity.” -Bruce Lee
In 1974, boxer Muhammad Ali was scheduled to fight George Foreman. Foreman was considered by many observers to be the favored to win the fight due to his superior punching power. He was stronger and more experienced than Ali.
Rather than try to match Foreman at his own game, Ali adopted a different tactic, which became famous in their “Rumble in the Jungle” fight. It was called the “rope a dope” technique.
During the fight, Ali put himself in a protected stance, put his back against the ropes of the ring, and let Foreman punch him relentlessly.
At the time some observers thought that Ali was being horribly beaten and worried that they might see him get killed in the ring.
But the ropes on Ali’s back allowed him to absorb the punches without taking a lot of damage. While Foreman exhausted himself fruitlessly attacking Ali, Ali was waiting for the moment to strike.
At the end of the 8th round, Ali knocked out Foreman and won.
Often, the stronger and faster opponent gets beaten by a weaker, slower adversary.
It’s because in the long run, it’s not about intensity — it’s about consistency.
This is the essence of Angela Duckworth’s groundbreaking book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance. In short, it is not the individual with the greatest starting position or motivation that usually wins — it’s the person who has the most “grit.” The person who can last the longest.
The individual who is able to make a stronger commitment to maintaining their course despite whatever happens…
This is the person who will reach their goal.
Will Smith, critically acclaimed actor and producer, was once asked about his motivation and how he got to become to successful.
“The only thing that I see that is distinctly different about me is I’m not afraid to die on a treadmill,” he explained.
“I will not be out-worked, period. You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me, you might be all of those things you got it on me in nine categories.
But if we get on the treadmill together, there’s two things: You’re getting off first, or I’m going to die.”
Success is all about consistency.
It’s not about never falling down — it’s about getting up every time you fall down.
“You will fall. And when you fall, the winner always gets up, and the loser stays down.” -Arnold Schwarzenegger
Most people rely on short, intense bursts of inspiration and motivation in their attempts to be successful. Maybe they read an inspiring weight-loss story, or just watched Gladiator.
After this inspiration, they act like a crazy person — they work tirelessly, day and night. They go to the gym 6 days in a row for two weeks, they write 5,000 words for their book, they throw out every piece of junk food they have in their house.
But what usually happens to these people?
The same fate that befalls nearly 92% of individuals who make New Year’s Resolutions: they give up a couple weeks later.
Enthusiasm is common.
Endurance is rare.
“Fall seven, rise eight.” -Ancient Japanese Proverb
8. Success Means Choosing Education Over Entertainment.
“Your level of success will rarely exceed your level of personal development, because success is something you attract by the person you become.” -Hal Elrod, The Miracle Morning
Choosing to learn instead of being entertained is a trademark characteristic of successful people.
Mastering success means learning to love being a small fish in a big pond. Most people don’t want to admit those three little words…“I don’t know.” Instead of choosing to learn, they reject the opportunity and instead go back to entertaining themselves.
But achieving your ultimate life requires a tremendous deal of learning. It requires an intense dedication to gaining knowledge, learning important lessons, and receiving teachings that add to your wisdom, experience, and education.
Some of the greatest and most successful minds of our time are also voracious readers. They make time for their education.
Warren Buffet (worth $74.4 billion) advocates to read hundreds of pages a day.
Mark Cuban (worth $3.4 billion) dedicates three hours a day to reading.
Bill Gates (worth $90.2 billion) reads 50 books a year, nearly a book a week.
Elon Musk (worth $15.2 billion) is an avid reader that claims he learned to build rockets by reading books.
The most successful people of the world don’t spend their precious and most potent time binge-watching TV, playing excessive video games, or partying into drunken oblivion.
The extraordinary people of this world dedicate massive amounts of time and money into investing in themselves.
This is done through reading books and blogs, attending conferences, seminars, webinars, and trainings, participating in “Mastermind groups,” collaborating with others, and working with several mentors.
Successful people choose education over entertainment.
Odds are, your life’s greatest work requires you to close the wide gap between what you know and what you don’t.
In the words of Benjamin Foley, “The goal of life is not to relax on the beach, sipping mojitos all day. The purpose is to find something you love that also adds value to the world.”
If you want to find that purpose, and actually start creating and doing work that impacts the loves of thousands…
You’ll need to get educated.
If you want to be extraordinary and successful, choose education and learning over entertainment.
“The first draft of anything is shit.” -Ernest Hemingway
I have a friend who is writing a novel.
It’s his first novel, and he works very hard on it. In fact, he’s been working on it for years. Sometimes I check in with him to see how it’s going. It’s usually going “alright.”
Here’s the thing he doesn’t understand:
His first book probably won’t be that good.
And that’s OK. His second and third books will probably be better.
But he’ll never know if he never publishes the first one.
I’ve written 2 eBooks so far. The first one sold exactly zero copies. The second one sold about 20 copies.
I imagine my next one will sell a little more. Same goes for the one after that.
My first 2 eBooks weren’t that great. I put a lot of work into them — a lot. But I also clicked “publish.” Most people never do that. They spend years building this intricate, almost-perfect creation that’s never quite “done.”
They don’t realize they’re only prolonging their own success.
Most people want to be wildly successful on the first try. But this almost never happens.
Everyone’s first draft isn’t that good. That’s because we haven’t learned what “great” is yet. We are not able to produce great work without first producing a lot of crap.
In the words of renowned radio host Ira Glass:
“All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not.
A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work.
It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions.”
My friend would do far better for himself if he simply published his book, accepted some criticisms and the fact that he didn’t immediately make the New York Times Best Seller list…and start on his second book.
It will probably do better than his first book did. Same goes for his 3rd and 4th books.
Success isn’t about creating; it’s is about consistently practicing quality actions. Every day. Over and over. Unsexy, boring work.
Michael Jordan didn’t become great while on the court of his widely-publicized games. And Michael Phelps didn’t become the most decorated Olympian of all time solely through his widely-publicized Olympic appearances.
These individuals became great alone, in practice, every day, for years. Over, and over, and over.
“Champions aren’y made in the ring. They are merely recognized there.” -Joe Frazier
Everyone’s first draft sucks.
Get over it, publish it, and try again. Your second draft will be better.
I used to juggle being an entrepreneur on the side while working full-time.
I used to believe that even if I slacked off all day at work — scraping by, just doing the minimum to not get fired — I could switch gears from the lazy, unmotivated worker I was to a disciplined, creative entrepreneur when I got home.
But that never worked.
How you do one thing is how you do everything. If you spend all day being bored, lazy, and irresponsible, you can’t simply “flip a switch” and become a truly responsible, disciplined, hard worker while at home, in your relationships, your finances, or your health.
Many people think they can compartmentalize their discipline and effort — working hard in some areas but not in others — but you can’t.
When one area of your life is suffering, all the other parts suffer. Conversely, when you develop one part of your life, all the other parts benefit too.
Are laziness, irresponsibility, and avoidance normal parts of your day? Even if they’re in areas you don’t deem worthy of your efforts — are they there?
If they are, they need to be changed. The whole cannot become healthy if there are still toxic areas that remain unaddressed.
Like a broken ankle or a dislocated shoulder, the entire body will suffer if even one part remains broken.
11. You Can Become Anything If You’re Willing to Pay the Price.
“You can learn, have, or be anything if you are willing to pay the price.
You can be a millionaire in not a long period of time.
You could be an established expert on any topic.
You could be a successful business owner.
You could have deep spiritual understanding.
You could do an Iron Man triathlon.
You could be an empathetic, caring, and loving person.
You could have beautiful and meaningful relationships with your romantic partner, business colleagues, mentors, and other people who inspire you.
You could be the person you know within yourself you can be.
You can live the life you know within yourself you are meant to live.
But you have to pay the price.”
The price for being extraordinary is a high one. It means severing ties with toxic individuals. It often means waking up earlier, eating healthier, and saying “no” to things you used to say yes to.
The truth is, there are probably dozens of daily activities you do that don’t serve you. They only serve to distract you, bring you down, or keep you “busy.”
Paying the price of success means changing these behaviors. The choice to become extraordinary is not unlike the addict who knows he has to quit to survive; do you keep doing the same things, or are you willing to change everything to transform?
For many people, the answer is no. They see the price tag for a truly successful life, and suddenly they’re hesitant and reluctant.
But if the prospect of the reward — becoming extraordinary and truly successful — is worth it to you…
When you’re with your loved ones, do you look at your smartphone or pay the price?
When you have 5 extra minutes, do you “zone out” or do you pay the price?
When you have a choice between the easy and comfortable path or the difficult and challenging path, do you pay the price?
When your alarm goes off in the morning, do you just press “snooze” or do you pay the price?
You can have anything you want. But this success requires a heavy price.
Are you willing to pay?
12. Success is a Lonely Road.
“The more bold you are, the more rejection you’ll experience.” -Todd Brison,
The thing about becoming truly successful is that most people never do it.
The world is full of members of the “mediocre majority.” Most people will never be successful. They may try, or claim they want to, but in reality, it never happens.
This reality becomes all the more keen for the few individuals who actually choose to become truly successful and extraordinary.
It’s lonely. There’s not a lot of company.
Only those who have reached the top of the mountain know how few tracks are up there.
If you want to be truly successful, you need to understand this road will probably be very lonely, for a time.
Even the most well-intentioned people around you may begin to disparage and discourage you from leaving the safety of the herd. Family, friends, and loved ones all may not understand your choice to go on a new path.
In some cases, they may even become resentful and hurtful.
This is because since many people never reach their dreams, they don’t want others to reach theirs. In order to prevent the reality that you achieved your goals while they did not, they strive to keep you in the herd, or ostracize you when you leave.
If you want to reach new heights and achieve success unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before, it will likely involve loneliness, rejection, and ostracism.
When my wife and I were still living in San Diego, I was extremely busy. I had written an eBook, started a podcast, gotten a craft beer certification, and read 30 books, all while in full-time grad school and full-time work.
When we moved to South Korea, our lives became extremely simple. And I began saying “no” to almost everything.
Some of these opportunities included:
Overtime at work
High-paying private tutoring
Youth basketball coach
Remote data administrator
I said no to all of them.
That’s because I realized they were all “good” opportunities, but not “great” ones.
None of these opportunities made me think, “Hell yes!”
From now on, if any opportunity doesn’t make you say, “Hell yes!” you must say no.
Most people are stuck in obligations they don’t even like, simply because they didn’t have the courage to say no. As a result, their days are spent doing things they don’t like that suck precious time and energy that could be spent on building their legacy.
You need to say “no” more.
In the words of Warren Buffet:
“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”
When you say yes to the “kinda-good” opportunities — the ones that make you say things like, “Sure, that could be fun,” or “Alright, that sounds interesting” — you forfeit your chance to say yes to amazing opportunities.
Your life’s legacy requires your best work, and a lot of time to do it.
You can’t create a legacy if you’re always distracted with good-not-great opportunities, even if you’re making a few extra bucks.
14. Acting “As If” Becomes Acting “As Is.”
“Act as if you are already the healthiest person you can be. Do not wait until you feel better about yourself or until you believe you have what it takes. As if you are self-actualized and your beliefs will follow suit. Act while you fear rather than waiting until you feel unafraid.” -David Richo, How To Be an Adult
One of the most important factors about becoming successful is self-belief. In other words, your level of how successful you will be is generally accurate.
This sentiment has been echoed throughout history.
Said Henry Ford, “Whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right.”
In a letter to a struggling friend, Bruce Lee said, “What you habitually think largely determines what you will ultimately become.”
Do you believe you can win? Can you envision yourself with your goals completed? Can you see yourself with everything you’ve ever wanted?
If you can’t, you’ll almost certainly never.
What you focus on, expands. This is why most critical, judgmental, and negative people invariably have negative, toxic lives.
If all you focus on is how much of a victim you are, you’ll always be a victim. If all you can see is how unfair your circumstances are, you’ll be doomed to stay in your stagnation.
Winners become winners by acting like one.
Acting “as if” can be a playful game, where you toy with the balance of shedding off who you were or are, and instead don the costume of who you want to be. It may sound silly, but this is a powerful exercise for your mind.
Robert Kiyosaki, author of the acclaimed finance book Rich Dad Poor Dad, recounted a time when he had lost a large amount of money, leaving he and his wife broke.
“I’m a rich man,” he would tell himself. “And rich men don’t do that.”
Even though he had literally lost all his money, he still acted like a rich man. He still donned the “costume” of a wealthy, financially secure individual, and so that’s what he became.
If you’re rich, you don’t make bad investments or foolish financial decisions.
So act like you’re rich.
If you’re a healthy, fit individual, you don’t eat garbage. If you’re a loving, caring husband, you love and serve your wife. That’s just what you do.
Even if you’re not there yet, don the costume. Acting “as if” will eventually become acting “as is.” This is how people become truly successful, especially if they or no one else around them has ever done so — they imagine themselves as that person. Then they act accordingly.
And in the words of Paulo Coelho:
“When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”
If you’re broke, overweight, unhappy, or stuck, act as if you’re not. Act as if you’re a rich, fit, content individual with a purpose.
You’ll become that person.
But you have to believe it.
“One will never get more than he thinks he can get.” -Bruce Lee
“Where you are is a result of who you were, but where you end up depends entirely on who you choose to be from this moment forward.” -Hal Elrod
Mastering success isn’t easy, but it’s simple.
Success isn’t mysterious. It’s not a magical puzzle that only a select few have the ability to solve.
It’s available right now.
But mastering success requires you to become a more open-minded and humble learner than you ever have been before.
You must learn from the experts. You must admit you don’t know.
You must recognize reaching new heights requires an entirely different you.
This is good news. We were not meant to stagnate or remain in comfort for long. As anyone who has chosen comfort over growth for too long knows, that very comfort sours and becomes a prison of fear, shame, and isolation.
The real, fulfilling life is waiting for you on the battlefield.
It’s not easy out there. But the rules are simple.
In his book, “The 8 Traits Successful People Have in Common,” author Richard St. John conducted intensive interviews with more than 500 highly successful people, from Bill Gates to Martha Stewart and collated the data to see if any common traits existed.
He found all those interviewed shared 8 traits, which he calls the “8 to be great” because “they’re the foundation for success and greatness in any field.”
1. Have a problem, because big ideas come from everyday problems.
2. Be observant: Eye-Q can be more important than IQ.
3. Listen: Ears are antennas for ideas.
4. Asking questions leads to ideas.
5. Borrow an idea, and build it into a new idea.
6. Make connections: Take one thing and connect it to another.
7. Make mistakes: Mistakes and failures lead to great ideas.
8. Write your ideas down.
6. They seek to continually learn
Self development plays an integral role in these leaders lives. They are never too old or wise to be students – this eagerness to learn keeps them at the forefront of trends, innovation and allows them to be reactive.
Continuous learning means becoming good at something, then getting better, and then seeking to be our absolute best, St. John writes.
7. They provide value to others
It’s important to ask yourself who you serve
Once you’ve determined who you serve, you need to figure out what unique value you can offer. Martha Stewart, for example, learned to be a master homemaker, and “her expertise had high value for millions of women clamoring for tips to make a better home,” he writes.
According to St. John, shift your focus off of yourself and onto the people you serve, to set yourself up for financial success: Do what you love. Serve others what they love. Get money in return.
8. They work hard and play hard
All of those interviewed admitted to working very long hours, on average each person was working up to 14 hour days. Oprah Winfrey, for example, told St. John that she “would never see daylight.”
Whilst hard work is necessary, it’s also important to have fun whilst you work – this allows you to avoid “burnout”. St John writes that successful people aren’t workaholics; they’re “workafrolics” because they have fun with their careers.
He recommends having an 80/20 split – meaning 80% of your work should be enjoyable and the remaining 20% should consist of the serious, not-so-fun stuff.
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