Just a short list…
1. Having your own definition of success.
You have to know what you’re about, what you are after, what you aim to achieve in life, what your mission or calling or dream or vision or goal is.
You can’t pick this up from other people. You have to figure it out yourself.
2. Being ambitious.
An essential starting point. If you don’t want something in the first place, why would you work for it?
3. Knowing what to do with the goals you set.
Goals are nice, and you should have your own. What do you do with them, though? Hang them on the wall and think about how nice they are? Say them out loud and wait for the universe to do the rest?
Or work toward them… There’s an idea.
4. Building deliberate habits.
We’re all creatures of habit, whether we like it or not. Best to consciously build habits that are productive, that help us move in the right direction, that promote self-discipline.
The tough part is establishing the habit. Once you’ve got it, you’ve just got to go with the flow.
5. Not wasting your energy/willpower.
Good habits help us avoid wasting willpower. Good habits are like tracks we can follow… and then we can use our willpower to accomplish other things.
6. Taking small daily actions.
Oh, these add up! Don’t despise the small actions, the daily details, the tiny steps forward. We all want to make great leaps of progress, but that’s not how it usually works.
How it (success) usually works is quietly, steadily, onward, every day, with consistency and diligence.
Step by step, line upon line, small act by small act, habit by habit…
7. Having a positive attitude/response to failure.
Failure is a way to learn, a way to grow, and a way to do better next time. It doesn’t mean you’re a failure, or worthless; failing means at least you tried. Failing means you’re getting somewhere.
Failing means you’re closing the gap between you and success.
8. Taking responsibility.
Victims can’t succeed, because victims are powerless. Own your own business. Own your own weaknesses. Admit when you’re wrong. Have the courage to stand up, look at the world, and decide you’ll do what you want with yourself in it.
The world doesn’t own you. Not unless you let it.
9. Seeing your value as inherent but your abilities as learned/acquired.
When you understand that your value is inherent, you can deal with failure or rejection without feeling like you are a failure.
And when you see your abilities as learned, you’ll know you can learn new abilities. You can acquire more skills. You can grow. You are not limited by what you have been, done, known, learned, or failed at in the past.
10. Having integrity.
Say what you mean, do what you say, follow through.
11. Being able to put risk in perspective.
Everything’s risky. A car ride is riskier than a trip by plane. Weigh the risk, be aware of it, but don’t let it rule you. And don’t forget to weigh the risk of doing nothing, of saying no, of staying “safe.”
12. Making and executing decisions.
Until you take responsibility, you’ll have trouble making decisions. So start with that: owning up. Then make the decisions that line up with who you are and where you want to go.
Then execute. Take action on each decision. Action is what defines a decision.
13. Putting appropriate value on your work.
Successful people do not undervalue what they do. And they don’t feel the need to haggle, to argue, or to justify the value they place on what they do. They do excellent work, and that is the justification.
14. Learning to live a lifestyle that is productive.
3 hours of reality TV every night? That’s not going to lead you to success, my friend.
Successful people structure their lives so that productivity becomes a normal, natural part of it. That means cutting out things that aren’t productive.
It’s painful at first, but so worth it.
15. Having an attitude of constant learning/adventure.
Life IS an adventure! And when you see it that way, you’ll see risk as less risk and more fun. When you’re willing to learn, you WILL learn.