Sometimes, success is not about knowing what to do, but it is about knowing what NOT to do. Like what Benjamin Franklin said, “Beware of little expenses. A small leak will sink a great ship.”
You may not aware that you are making mistakes that cause you great success in life. No matter how skillful, talented, or knowledgeable you are, if you continue to make mistakes, success will still elude you.
For example, if you want to have a healthy body, you eat more greens and you commit to exercising, but if you don’t get rid of your bad drinking habit, you will never achieve the health level as you expected in the future.
Life is like running a marathon, you can be running on the right direction, but if there are things and people constantly distracting you and trying to get you off course, you may not be able to finish the marathon in life.
The same goes with success in life. You know what you want, you have clear and specifics goals, and you understand your plan, but if you don’t get rid of bad habits simple mistakes that consistently derail you, you will never reach your goals and dreams.
So, learn to avoid making mistakes that will take you away from the success you want. Here are the 10 common mistakes to avoid if you want to succeed in life:
1. Don’t know what you want out of life
Do you know what you want out of your life? Sadly, most people don’t. They have no idea about what their dreams and goals. They don’t even spend time thinking about their future.
Every morning, they wake up to their alarm, prepare themselves and go to work. And during the weekend, they party on Friday night, sleep longer and wake up later on Saturday and Sunday. They binge on movies and dramas, they play games, and they check updates on social media every hour.
Day after day, week after week. They repeat the same kind of daily life. And after a few years, they discover that this is not the kind of life they want to live in. Yet, they don’t do anything about it.
Does this explain your life? If this is the kind of life you are going through, stop!
Start being conscious about what you want to achieve out of your life and start living an intentional life.
Spend time thinking about the future you want to create. Make plans to achieve them and start taking consistent action to live the life you want.
The first step to success is to identify what success means to you. Stop being like most people and live life without any purpose and goals.
If you need help to find out what you want to do with your life, read this article, 5 Easy Steps How To Find Out What You Want To Do In Life.
2. Not keeping your goals and dreams in your head
Dreaming about what you want and having a vision in life is just the beginning. What you need to do then is to keep that vision in your head, all the time.
Most people have dreams. They have a glimpse of the kind of future they want to live, but they keep that vision in their heads long enough. They only think about their dreams and goals for just a minute.
And then they are distracted by other things or they tell themselves to stop dreaming and start living in ‘reality’.
If you want to succeed in life, you must constantly program your goals and your dreams into your mind. You want to condition your subconscious mind with the things that you want most in life.
I bet you have heard the phrase, “You become what you think about most of the time.” So, if you don’t think about your dreams and goals, instead, you think about other things, guess what will happen in your life? Nothing.
Extraordinary people who achieved outstanding success in life constantly holding their dreams and goals in their head.
People like Elon Musk, Jack Ma, Michael Jordan, Lionel Messi, Richard Branson, etc., know what they want, and they consistently think about them.
They can’t help but think about their dreams and goals, at any moment. They live their dreams, they breath, eat, talk, walk, and sleep with the thoughts of achieving what they want.
Jack Ma once said that his wife complained and told him that he belonged to his business, Alibaba, not her. This is because Jack constantly thinks about his business, how to do better, how to solve the problems he faced in his business, how to make more sales, how to improve, etc.
Jack said that even when he was taking a bath or in the toilet, he can’t help but to keep on thinking about his business and company.
This is how your thinking can shape your life. What you think about most of the time, will become true in your life.
Hence, be more committed to your dreams and goals. Keep them in your head and think about the success you want most of the time.
If you want to learn more about how to set empowering goals, check out Goal Setting Formula masterclass.
3. No action or poor execution
This is where most people fail – they don’t take action. They dream about what they want to achieve, but they don’t do anything about it.
You have to understand that the distance between your goals and your life is called action. Without action, nothing will come to fruition.
Don’t just think about what you want but don’t do anything about it. If you are truly committed to your goals and dreams, you will take the necessary action.
Create a plan and stick to your plan. If you want to lose weight and have a fit body, you can’t just think about it and hope that it will magically happen upon you.
You need to work for it. Nobody can do your exercise for you. Only you can do that.
Follow the Rule of 5. Take 5 action steps every day – big and small.
Regardless of whether it is to make a phone call, to write 100 words, do 10 push-ups, read for 10 minutes, or meditate for 5 minutes, do it.
Take 5 action steps each day. If you stick to the Rule of 5, you will have 5 little wins every day. And in a week, you will have created 35 wins. Within a month, you will have 150 wins. In a year, you will create 1,825 wins.
Can you imagine how these 1,825 small wins can positively impact your life?
Thus, take action and stick to your plan. Don’t procrastinate. Do something and do it now.
If you are someone who always procrastinates and doesn’t take action, read my article below:
4. Doubt yourself and too afraid to fail
Another common mistake why people fail to succeed in life is that they doubt themselves. They are too afraid to fail. They worried too much and they concerned about the uncertainty that they are going to venture into.
Never let your doubts stop you from living the life you want. As what Les Brown said:
“Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.”
When you doubt yourself, you will fall back and won’t go all out.
Think about all the professional athletes and champions who made it to the Olympics. Do you think that people who go to the Olympics doubt their abilities and think that if they are no good?
I doubt it seriously. Extraordinary people are able to produce outstanding results in life because they don’t doubt themselves. They have fears and they too, are concerned about the uncertainty, but they plunge into action and do it anyway.
There is a best-selling book called Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, written by Susan Jeffers. And that’s exactly what you need to do. Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Never let your doubts and fears stop you from living your best life ever. Have the courage to face the difficulties and challenges in life.
You either face the pain of discipline and do the hard work, or you have to face the pain of regret for not pursue the success you desire in life.
5. Not asking for help
Do you know that you can’t succeed alone? You can’t achieve everything all by yourself. You need help. You need support from others.
This is why people build companies and organizations. When you have the help you needed, you can go faster and achieve more.
Most people make the mistake to think that they can achieve everything all by themselves. As a result, they don’t ask for help.
They try to do everything on their own and they think that they can be successful that way.
If you are a solopreneur who is trying to build a successful online business on your own, most likely, you’re going to fail.
You need help. You need the advice from other successful people who have done it. And you need the support from others to build, grow, and spread your business. You can’t do it all by yourself.
Therefore, stop trying to do things on your own from now on. Make it part of your plan to seek help and support. Think about who you can recruit into your team. Visualize the success you want and ask yourself who can help you to get there, and then ask for the help you require.
6. Doing the same thing over and over again
Another common mistake most people make is that they do the same thing over and over again.
Don’t get me wrong, yes you need to be consistent with what you do, but once a while, you need to try something different to get a different result.
If you keep doing the same thing, you will be repeating the process and get the same old results.
Don’t repeat a year of your life for 75 times and call it life. You must breakthrough and venture out of your comfort zone. Do something different and challenge yourself to get better results.
If your goal is to build a successful website, but after going through a year of hard work but you are not getting the result you want, perhaps, you need to change your strategy. Do things differently.
When spice things up, you will get different results. And yes, you will fail and there is no guarantee that you will get the outcomes you want, but that’s exactly the point.
Failures build your character. You want to experience different things to gain better experience so that you can become better and better.
Always remember this quote from Tony Robbins:
“Success in life is the result of good judgment. Good judgment is usually the result of experience. Experience is usually the result of bad judgment.”
So, don’t be afraid to do something different. You must challenge yourself to do something uncomfortable from time to time. That’s how you grow.
Here’s a great article you should read: 5 Things I’ve Learned by Doing Things Differently.
7. Making excuses and blaming others
If you want to be successful, you must get rid of the habit and mistake of making excuses and blaming others.
There is no way you can succeed if you always make excuses. And when you blame others, you are giving away the power to change the situation to someone else.
Think about it, if you say that your colleague or your partner is the one that is causing you to fail at your project, don’t you mean to say that you are not in charge of it and that’s why it fails?
When you give excuses and play the blame game, you are giving away your responsibility.
But if you take the responsibility and think that it is your own mistakes or actions that cause your project to fail, you can then do something different to make a positive change.
Saying that traffic causes you late to work makes you feel powerless because there is nothing you can do about the traffic.
However, if you take full responsibility and say that it is you who choose to wake up late, you now have a chance to make a change. You can get up early and go out a little earlier to beat the congestion.
This is why you must take responsibility for everything that happens in your life. You are where you are now because of your own thinking, decisions, and actions.
Hence, stop blaming others and don’t make lousy excuses to avoid the problems.
8. Choose instant gratification
Instant gratification means opting for the immediate temptations that forgo a future benefit. And this is what most people do, as a result, they fail to produce the long-term result they want.
We always have a choice. To watch TV, to play games, or work on our goals and dreams.
Whatever you choose, try to delay gratification and do the difficult things first. This is because things that are easy to do will have no benefit in the long-term. But things that are difficult to accomplish usually give you a better reward in the future.
If you get to choose between enjoying now and working hard, which will go for? Your answer says a lot about your success in life.
Successful people choose to do difficult things. They delay gratification and choose to do the uncomfortable so that they can enjoy the benefit in the future.
On the other hand, unsuccessful people choose to do comfortable things now by opting for instant gratification. They choose to watch TV, play games, waste time on social media, have fun, etc., rather than choosing to work on their dreams and goals.
This is a very common mistake most people make. They prefer to enjoy now and to feel the pain later.
So, choose to delay gratification and do the difficult things first. Do what is hard now so that you can enjoy later.
9. Fail to upgrade and improve yourself
If you are not upgrading and improving yourself, you will never achieve a higher-level success.
Most people don’t read, learn and they don’t take on new courses to improve their knowledge. Plus, they don’t venture out of their comfort zone and do new things to gain new experience.
When you don’t improve and remain where you are, guess what, you will be the same in the future. You are where you are because of what you know. If you want to go to a higher level, you must learn something new and apply your knowledge.
If there is something that you don’t know how to do, just learn. Find the answer on Google, read books, attend classes, ask the experts in the industry for help.
“If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.”
Your success largely depends on if you are determined to learn and improve.
We change our phones a few years because they become outdated and obsolete, what makes you think you don’t have to improve and upgrade yourself?
If you don’t do it, you will become like your phone, outdated and soon become obsolete.
Someone who is more updated and willing to work harder will replace you.
10. Losing sight of your vision and purpose
Whatever you do, don’t lose sight of your vision. Never forget about your purpose and why you are into it in the first place.
I bet you have seen businesses started strong. The founder understands his why and he strives to deliver a good product and service. But eventually, the business falls because the founder chooses to focus on profit rather than providing a quality product or service.
Never let this happen to you. This is why you must keep your goals in your head all the time. Don’t lose sight of your vision and purpose. Remember why you do what you do.
It is easy to get lost and distracted in the daily hustle. And you must learn to review your goals and plans.
I have seen many bloggers started with high motivation. They say they want to create value to their community by sharing great blogs. But eventually, they lose sight of their objectives. They started to put up many ads on their blogs and they focus on making an income rather than making an impact.
You do not want this to happen. Write down your goals and objectives. Keep your vision, mission, and purpose in your head at all moment.
And if you want to, learn how to set goals using my formula here.
Use the right and proven method to set goals that will bring you the success you want.