This is a guest article contribute by Stacey Marone from Scholaradvisor.
While it is true that success is something that most of us aspire for, we also know that achieving success is not an easy feat. Successful people would attest to that. It takes a lot more than sheer luck to get to where they are at present.
What does it take to be one, you might ask. Well, successful people would probably tell you that there is no definite equation to success. They would probably advise everyone else to work on focus, prioritization, and a positive mindset for starters.
Put in a lot of hard work too, they might say. After all, in Stephen C. Hogan’s words, “You can’t have a million-dollar dream with a minimum-wage work ethic.”
But surely, there must be something that distinguishes successful people from the rest who struggle to be like them.
And while we support the statement that there is no definite equation to achieving success, we have rounded up thirteen things that are common among people who are on top of their games.
Read on, and you might learn a few tricks that can help you attain success.
1. Treat time as valuable
The saying “time is gold” makes so much sense for successful people. They acknowledge that time is precious because one can never get it back. Once the time has passed, there is no turning back.
But acknowledging the significance of time is not enough. Successful people acknowledge that fact and act on it. This is the very reason successful people have high regard for schedules, calendars, and time management.
Successful people don’t take time for granted. Instead, they treat time, down to the minutes and seconds, as an essential.
Knowing that no one can extend a day to more than 24 hours, successful people choose to make the most of what they have. They segment their day to ensure that they have time for everything.
2. Understand and appreciate the value of schedules
Successful people are time-conscientious.
Schedules are a must for them, which explain the need for planners and calendars. Whether daily, weekly, or monthly, they would probably have it because they set aside a date or period for each of their activities.
Take a look at a $50 bill. You would recognize him as Benjamin Franklin, of course. Google search his name, and you would have a list of his numerous achievements. Fun fact: He has a daily schedule that lists down all of his activities within the day.
You see, schedules help you map out your day. Breaking down your 24 hours into small periods makes everything visible, so you would know if you are missing out on anything. Schedules also let you know if you are keeping a balanced lifestyle
Benjamin Franklin’s habit of following a daily routine and schedule played a significant role in making sure that he has time for what he needs to do, and what he wants to do.
3. Manage your energy
Successful people also recognize the fact that the human body has its limitations. One cannot expend too much energy, unless they risk their health because of too much fatigue.
Once you have a schedule figured out, you can see whether your day requires a high level of energy from you. If you think your body can handle such a schedule, well and good because it might signify that your body is healthy enough to take on a jam-packed day.
On the contrary, you can fix your schedule, taking into consideration the amount of attention and energy that an activity needs. For instance, if your body is likely to be more active in the morning it is better to schedule activities that require high energy during the first part of your day. The rest of your small activities can be done in the afternoon during your down time.
4. Do things one at a time
You might think that successful people are great at multitasking.
As a matter of fact, successful people avoid multitasking because it means diminishing focus on one activity while you are doing something else at the same time.
Their secret is to focus on a single task. In fact, some already identify the most important task of the day right upon waking up. This helps you keep your concentration on accomplishing your goal, and avoid the danger of overlooking small yet significant details in your work.
5. Delegate tasks
Any successful person would credit a part of his or her success to those who helped him or her.
Yes, a person’s success depends largely on the individual himself, but does not necessarily mean that there is no one else who contributed to the success.
To be honest, people who are more productive know the impact of working together with a team in order to do more. A successful person is smart enough to admit that he or she cannot do everything all at once. Therefore, he or she seeks the help of others, and delegate tasks to them.
Keep in mind that delegation should not mean incompetence on your part, but rather see it as a means to achieving greater productivity.
6. Make small victories count
Managed to present a proposal without stuttering? Closed a big business deal with a difficult client?
Regardless of the weight of an accomplishment, successful people view it as another step towards the fulfillment of their bigger goal. They appreciate these small victories because it is still an accomplishment nonetheless. They know that the journey to success is not a huge jump from bottom to top, but rather a series of small steps leading to that overall goal.
Always be grateful for those small wins. Let it boost your confidence, and remind you that you are right on track.
7. Know when to say ‘No’
Famous investor Warren Buffet may have to attribute a part of his success to the word ‘no.’ After all, he was quoted saying, “The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”
Successful people are not slaves to the word ‘yes’ because they know that saying yes to everything can spell the difference between a productive day or otherwise.
8. Learn the value of persistence
Successful people enjoy success because they have also experienced failure. But failures did not paralyze them or scare them.
What sets them apart from the mediocre is their drive to continue despite a previous failure. Their focus is not diverted or swayed by the defeat. Their mindset is still aimed at achieving triumph.
Failure is just another word for challenge. Always dare to overcome the challenge. Try and try until you succeed, as the common adage goes. Know that your hard work will pay off in the end.
9. Stay away from unnecessary meetings
Do you ever go to work, dreading the possibility of enduring two or more hours just for a meeting? Well, you may not be alone. Even successful people dislike the idea of meetings because it takes too much time without really accomplishing much.
In case a meeting is actually needed, implement a more strategic approach in handling a meeting.
Nowadays, conference calls via phone or video calls can be more efficient. It is also advisable to have an outline of the meeting’s point for discussion to keep the meeting on track.
10. Practice foresight
Another characteristic that contributes to the success of achievers is foresight. They are wise enough to consider that inconsistency is a human frailty, and think two steps ahead to ensure that nothing goes wrong.
While good preparation may get you ready, keep in mind to be on the safe side by anticipating problems or inconveniences that may surface in the future. Save a back-up of an important document to ascertain the data will not be lost or keep tabs on your team and their individual progress to avoid overlapping of workload.
11. Know when good enough can be okay
Perfection is good, but let’s admit it: it won’t be that easy to achieve.
Successful people know that for a fact, and would rather make do with the better options than waste precious time attempting to come up with the best.
If you are working with a team, trust your colleagues to produce an output where they have exerted the best of their efforts. It may not exactly be perfect, but what matters more is whether you have accomplished more in a shorter period of time.
12. Keep healthy and value self-care
There is a difference between a successful individual and an overworked one. Although people might often associate success with working hard, success should not be paid off with your health.
Eat right. Move your body. Keep hydrated. These may be a few lifestyle practices that successful people do to ensure that they are in the pink of health.
After all, how can you expect someone to be efficient in his responsibilities if he cannot even take care of himself?
13. Maintain a balanced lifestyle
Success may as well be measured by how a person balances his work and personal life. You must have time for other things aside from work. Spend time with your family, pursue your hobbies, and do other things that make you feel fulfilled.
About the Author
Stacey Marone is a freelance writer and a contributor for Scholaradvisor dissertation Service. In her free time she does volunteer work and helps individuals and organizations get better result in leadership and project management. Her passions also involve travelling and exploring new places.