Success is something that most people want; it’s written into the very fabric of our souls.
But there’s a stark and massive difference between simply wanting and engaging in actions and behavior, which will result in the attainment of success.
In today’s multimedia and social media connected world, we have near-constant access to the profiles, pictures, and videos of the rich and famous partaking in the fruits of their success. The fast, exotic European luxury cars, private jets, exclusive yachts, sprawling estates, six-pack abs, bronze-tan skin, perfect hairdos, and custom-fitted clothes.
We see the wealth and luxuries of another person’s lifestyle and wish it could all be ours too. Many times we obsess to the point of becoming envious and depressed – because it seems too far away and unattainable.
In reality, behind each social media post and celebrity-centric news story, we don’t see the hard work, discipline, and dedication that it has taken for those people to achieve their economic, social, business, or educational status. Perhaps, even more importantly, what we also don’t see are the heartaches, struggles, pain, and tears that they have been through, while they were on their journey – but that is another topic best saved for another post.
Because we have a habit of looking at the world through a superficial lense, I want to narrow the focus on the things which we don’t focus on every time we look at the lives of the successful.
Today, I’m going to zoom in on the “7 Keys of Successful People”.
#1: Truly successful people don’t lounge around in bed all day. Instead, they wake up well before the average person. Think about this: If you live to become 80 years old, that means you have 29,200 days to live your life on this side of eternity. So, let’s do the math. There are 24 hours in a day, and if you live 29,200 days, you have precisely 700,800 hours to accomplish everything you were created to do. To look at it another way, if your sleeping 8+ hours a day, that means that over the course of your life you would have spent at least 233,600 hours sleeping. That is a third of your life! Genuinely successful people value rest and understand the need for a good night’s rest, but they also know that the moment their feet hit the floor, they are on the clock and only have about two-thirds of their day to plant, cultivate, and grow.
#2: Successful people have an active vision and plan which covers the short term (9-12 months), the near term (3-5 years), the long term (5-10 years) and a legacy term (10-20+ years). They write the plan down, filter it through seasoned counsel, and stick to it. Failing to plan is planning to fail.
#3: Successful and prosperous people read – A LOT! Every self-sustaining millionaire and billionaire will expand and enrich their knowledge base. They are continually learning and developing their minds. Sure, in this fast-paced society we live in, sometimes we don’t have the time to read an actual book, but what about audiobooks and podcasts? With the advantage of technology, there is almost no excuse for not enriching your mind with valuable information and tools to help you grow intellectually.
#4: Surround yourself with eagles; not turkeys. Those who are successful surround themselves and orbit around people who will give sound advice and speak the truth. They keep company with those who hold them accountable.
#5: If you’re on time, you’re late. Successful people know the value of a timeline and respect deadlines. They stay ahead of schedule and plan accordingly. They understand that time is a valuable and irreplaceable commodity. They don’t waste theirs or another person’s time by showing up at the last minute or canceling unannounced.
#6: A closed mind is a locked door to the world’s most valuable asset. Successful people are willing to listen and learn. Their ego is not so sensitive that they can’t take constructive criticism and not so big that there isn’t room for new ideas.
#7: Honest self-reflection yields the fruit of experience. A successful person will do a gut check and assess areas of weakness as pathways for growth. They see mistakes as an opportunity to learn, not as things from which to stubbornly shy away. Mistakes only become problems when they are chronic and permanent.
This is just a shortlist of some key ingredients which are employed by some of the most successful, influential, and wealthy people today. Your life is a gift from God, created for a unique and special purpose which only you can discover. Learn to live it intentionally and with a standard of excellence and one day you’ll look in the rear-view mirror and see that you’ve gone higher, farther and faster than you ever thought possible.