Welcome to WF Home Business
Many people want to achieve success in life, but it’s easier said than done. There are so many distractions that it can be challenging to discipline oneself to accomplish a monumental goal. By keeping the following advice in mind, however, you can dramatically increase your chances of becoming successful in whatever you choose to pursue.
Method 1 of 3: Planning for Success
1. Imagine becoming successful. Einstein said the imagination is more important than knowledge. The more vividly and accurately you imagine your success, the easier it will be for the rest of yourself to follow through. The same way engineers first imagine a bridge and then build it, you can be the engineer of your success, too.
- Dedicate a few minutes every day to imagining your success. Imagine yourself in a movie in which you are successful. What are you doing in the movie? What is your success like? Savor the feeling of your success, and use it as motivation to stoke your fire.
- Cultivate a healthy motivation when imagining your success. Successful people all believe in themselves and their missions. At the same time, you do not want to alienate other people with extreme narcissism. Understand that other people want to be just as successful as you do; your goal should not be to trample over them to get what you want.
2. Find the purpose or goal of your life. Identify the things you love to do, the things that give you satisfaction. Once you identify what you love to do, use this information to find the purpose of your life or the objective of your life.
- Finding what you love to do will give you motivation along the way. Imagine being forced to do a triathlon when your true passion is chess. Pretty difficult, huh? Now imagine the opportunity to participate in a chess tournament. It’s much, much easier to persistently chip away at your goal if your goal is something you enjoy doing.
- How do you figure out a purpose or goal in life? It’s different for everyone, and for some it’s difficult, but there are several ways you can try to figure it out:
- Talk with a career coach or visit a good psychologist.
- Try out several different careers, remembering that even a less-than-fulfilling job can help you learn.
- Try making a career out of something you love. Whether it’s brewing beer or advising on art, you’re more likely to be successful doing something you know you love.
3. Define the meaning of success as you see it. You cannot have success if you do not know what it means for you. Everyone views success differently and using someone else’s standard for success is like eating another person’s lunch and expecting to love it. Set clear goals and be realistic.
- How will you know when you have achieved your goals? Your standards should be quantifiable, or else you could spend your entire life chasing after a vague goal.
- For example, let’s say you want to be good at your job. You get a promotion, you get a raise, but you still haven’t reached your goal because you could always do better, right? You could always get promoted even further, or make even more money. Whatever you have will never be enough.
- Instead, create benchmarks: “My goal is to increase my productivity by 30% and only be late for work five times per year, at the most.” These are quantifiable goals that when achieved, give you a sense of satisfaction and completion, making you feel successful and confident.
4. Selectively lower your confidence. You read it right: lower your confidence. It’s a truism in business that you need to have high self-confidence to get things done. But some people think, and for good reason, that lower self-confidence makes people more successful, for these reasons:
- Lower self-confidence makes you pay attention to critical feedback and helps you be more self-critical. If you’re convinced you’re God’s gift to engineering, you probably won’t be receptive to feedback. Nor will you be able to criticize yourself effectively. Successful people do exactly that.
- Lower self-confidence makes you work harder and prepare more. If you’re not convinced you’re going to nail your presentation next Monday, you’re likely to spend more time practicing and going over your numbers. This is a great habit.
- Lower self-confidence makes you less narcissistic. Less narcissistic people are respected more by co-workers, and happy co-workers make a more successful team. It’s no secret that respect will make you successful.
5. Set a timeline for when you want to achieve your objective. If you don’t know when you will achieve your objective by, then it’s hard to know whether you have failed. Give yourself a timeline that is difficult but doable. Winning a Tour de France from scratch in two years is not reasonable, but booking a comedy gig in front of at least 20 paying customers probably is.
6. Identify the things/skills/material needed to achieve your objectives. If you want to be a famous speaker, for example, you need a broad vocabulary, subject knowledge, speech writing, voice clarity, and presentation skills. This is identifying short term objectives to achieve long term goals.
7. Be curious about life. Many successful people have an insatiable curiosity. If they don’t understand how something works or don’t know the answer to a question, they find out. Often, this takes them on a quest of self-discovery, one in which the journey is just as important as the destination.
8. Identify the skills you need to sharpen and the skills you can outsource.Outsourcing is all about time-management. You may think of yourself as a superman or superwoman, but there are limits to your powers. Outsourcing certain less essential tasks gives you more time to focus on the things that are absolutely essential to your craft.
- Use the last example as a template; to become a great speaker, you need to improve voice and presentation skills as these are the basic skills needed for a speaker. But if you are lacking speech writing or subject knowledge skills, you can try to outsource them to an expert. This is called working smart. Many great leaders don’t write their own speeches; they focus on delivering it right.
Method 2 of 3: Execution
1. Execute your small objectives, focusing on your main objective.Don’t find reasons to procrastinate. Jump headfirst into the challenge and start chipping away. You never know what problems will present themselves before you step into the arena.
- Break your goal into small steps. Does the goal of starting a technology company seem impossibly unattainable? Break it down into smaller goals. Focus on streamlining your idea; then focus on getting funding; then move onto building a prototype, etc. If you have the vision to attack your goal piece by piece, it’s easier and less daunting to execute.
2. Stay away from distractions as much as possible. Distractions are either the spice of life or the forbidden fruit, depending on your perspective. But let’s be clear: it’s almost impossible to be 100% focused on your task 100% of the time. Distractions are okay in low doses. But when your goals start taking a backseat to petty distractions, it’s time to banish them.
3. Surround yourself with other people who are successful. When you’re surrounded with people who are highly-driven, it’s encouraging. You can bounce ideas off people, and they can even connect you with other people. Surrounding yourself with driven, successful people is a way to create a culture of success.
- Study successful people. Look around — who has the success that you envision for yourself? What are they doing? How do they approach life? Ask them for advice. Model some of your approaches around theirs, if possible. Knowledge is as free as it is powerful.
4. Trust other people to do their job. It’s hard to be successful if you don’t trust the people around you. You’re constantly micro-managing everything, leaving yourself spread thin and the others miffed about you not giving them a chance. Being successful is partly about assembling an able team around you. If you can’t trust others enough to let them do their job, you probably won’t succeed at that.
- Trust in people because trust can be an incredibly motivating factor. If you trust in someone, they’ll want to do well because they want to reward your trust in them. This is a powerful motivator.
- Trust in people because you need to. As John Donne once wrote, “No man is an island.” What he meant by this is that no man works alone, entirely independently, however much he thinks he does. We depend on other people, whether we like it or not. Placing trust in other people is a necessity, not an option.
5. Find a mentor. A mentor is someone, usually with a bit more experience than you, who knows the trade, offers advice, and helps you in your pursuit. Behind many successful people are mentors. Mentors get satisfaction out of knowing that their guidance has literally bred success.
A mentor will help you:
- Network. Networking is making connections with people who have connections. Contrary to popular belief, networking is mutually beneficial. You offer expertise, opinion, or opportunity to someone in exchange for something back.
- Troubleshoot. Troubleshooting is learning about how to make ideas or applications even better. Your mentor can help you figure out what you need to change in order to make your idea(s) even better.
- Strategize. A mentor will probably have more vision than you because s/he’s been in the game longer, with more successes and failures. You can draw on their legacy of experience to strategize about the future.
6. Gather as much information as you can. Listen. Study. Understand. Learn. Repeat. Humans are amazing creatures because we can look at the world, make intellectual connections, and use those connections to make our lives better (or potentially worse). This is what information allows us to do. Never turn your “learning switch” off. You never know when your flash of insight will come!
7. Look at what the numbers are telling you. Did you ever have an idea about something but were afraid that the numbers (i.e. metrics) wouldn’t back it up? That fear is normal, but it’s a good idea to let the numbers give you guidance. Better to be wrong and adapt than to stubbornly insist you’re doing it right when the numbers don’t back that up.
- For example, in 2011, the CEO of Netflix, Reed Hastings, tried to convert the successful DVD-renting business into a streaming-only enterprise, provisionally called Qwikster. Hordes of Netflix devotees ended their subscription. Netflix’s stock price dropped nearly 80% at one point.
- Instead of blindly continuing his vision for the company, Hastings reconsidered. He apologized for his actions, redoubled his efforts to focus on content, and temporarily shelved Qwikster. Hastings let the numbers — and the people — tell him what to do.
8. Take calculated risks. Step out of your comfort zone. Successful people think big and act big. Don’t wait for opportunities to fall in your lap. Sniff them out. Successful people make big investments (in their careers, in their businesses, in their education) and all investments involve risk. Study your risks, make sure the odds are in your favor, and take a leap. Be bold. Three calculated risks to consider:
- Partner with a competitor. Whether you’re a long distance runner or rolling out back-end solutions to technology giants, partnering with the competition may help you pool your resources, motivate you to work harder, and build new relationships.
- Lead, don’t follow. Leading the way can be dangerous. You’re taking on the headwinds literally, perhaps, or you’re banking on an idea — like Facebook or Google — that someone has already tried before. Summon up the courage to do something different.
- Hit singles and doubles, not home runs. Of course, hitting a home run isn’t a bad thing at all! It’s just that you can’t rely on them to win the game every single time. Try letting singles and doubles add up to the same value as home runs.
9. Solve problems. People who are successful encourage progress by solving problems and answering questions. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, look around and try and think of ways you can contribute. What are people struggling with or complaining about? How can you make life easier for them in an effective way? Can you re-design or re-organize some aspect of the situation so things run more smoothly? Can you create a product or provide a service that fills a critical gap?
Which problems are you motivated to solve?
- Social problems. Facebook reinvented the way we interact with one another. Can you think of a similar social problem that needs reinventing?
- Technology problems. Companies like Dell design smaller and more powerful computer processors that help our user experience line up with our expectations. Can you help people do with technology what they already want to do?
- Strategic problems. Consultants like IBM help other companies and individuals become more productive, profitable, and prudent. Can you help someone else solve a strategic problem?
- Interpersonal problems. Psychologists and marriage counselors help other people navigate the complex web of personal relationships that make up our lives. Can you help people better get along with one another?
10. Use technology, don’t let it use you. Technology can be incredibly powerful; it connects us with people around the world in the blink of an eye; it computes algorithms accurately and quickly; it makes mundane tasks, like data entry, easier and less painful. But technology can be a burden if you let it. It can sap your energy and productivity, leading to wasted opportunity. The beauty and the bane of the internet, specifically, is that TED Talks can turn into watching Ted the movie quicker than you can say “ADD.”
Method 3 of 3: Redoing
1. Be persistent. You’re going to fail — that much is a given. What will define you is how you pick yourself up after you’ve fallen. Don’t give up. If your first attempt didn’t work, don’t quit.
- Don’t let failure define you. When asked about his 10,000 failed attempts to develop a storage battery, the prolific American inventor Thomas Edison responded: “I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
- Don’t make excuses. Don’t rationalize your failure by placing the blame on someone or something else. Accept when something is your fault. This will help you identify what you need to change to get better. An excuse after failure is a refusal to make the situation better.
- Learn from your failures. Each failure is an opportunity to learn. If you make a mistake and refuse to learn, odds are you’ll make that same mistake sometime down the line. If you make a mistake and learn from it, you won’t waste your time making the same mistake again.
2. Accept that life is unfair. It’s a fact. You can moan about it and wish that it were different, or you can go out there and do something about it. So stop wasting time about the unfairness of it all and think how to use the situation for your benefit. Newton could have complained about the apple falling from the tree and hitting his head. Instead, he identified the law of gravity and is now known as the father of physics.
3. Remember that success does not guarantee happiness. Success is equated with achieving a goal, but don’t assume it will always bring happiness. Many people make the mistake that if they accomplish this or that, they’ll be happier. Fulfillment and satisfaction have a lot more to do with how you approach life than withwhat you do in life. Keep that in perspective.
- Don’t burn bridges along the way. A lot of life is about personal relationships, so don’t forsake them. If you’ve invented a cheap, efficient way to make nuclear fission, but everyone dislikes you, you have no spouse, and no friends, will it be worth it?
- Value experiences over objects. Humans can be extraordinarily obsessed with money. It’s strange, too, because scientists think that our memories of our experiences make us happier than objects we can buy with money. Focus on making great memories with great people along the way, and you should be happy.
4. Remove fear and doubt from your way of thinking. Focus on staying positive in every situation. You will be surprised how effective you can be when your thoughts are guiding your actions, not the other way around. If you fail, don’t be fearful about starting over; be happy that you’ve been given a chance to be even more successful.
- Trust yourself and believe in your abilities.
- Always be humble. Too much pride will always be your downfall.
- Not everyone will be happy for you and your success. Some people are insecure and jealous. Be prepared for them, and look past them until you find the people who are happy for you and who support you in all that you do.
- The key to becoming successful is finding one thing that you love and mastering that one thing.
- There is not any shortcut for success. It’s just the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure!
- Success does not come through willpower alone. It takes consistency and determination. Doing something once won’t make a huge difference; it’s when you do that one thing many times over that you can achieve success.
- What will make you a success is already in you.
- Do not worry too much about other people’s views. Just adhere to what you want to achieve.
- Pushing success on others usually backfires. Lead by example. If they see your accomplishments, they may start to wonder how they can do more of what you’re doing.
- Be polite and respectful. Remember, you don’t have to trample over other people to become successful.
Did this article help you?
Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 1,123,686 times.