The First 5 Habits of Successful People
We’d all like to be more successful and many of us worry that we aren’t achieving our full potential. Some people seem to be able to nail deadlines and achieve their goals effortlessly, whilst the rest of us feel we’re stuck on a hamster wheel of obstacles that just keeps spinning faster.
But are these successful people just blessed with an ability to get what they want out of life, or is there something else at work behind the scenes? Whether in business or personal life, we all like to think we can achieve what we desire. But is regular success down to luck or is there a trusted recipe?
Over recent years, researchers have pinpointed several habits that people who are perceived as successful share. It’s important to note that these are regular activities that their practitioners stick to – these aren’t quick fix solutions and do require commitment to a regular routine.
If you sometimes ponder what you’re truly capable of, but feel that life is holding you back, why not try to implement some of these suggested lifestyle changes? Over our next two posts, we have a look at the ten most common habits indicative of success. If you can commit to three out of the ten on a daily basis for three months, research suggests you will become more successful, achieve more and feel more satisfied with your life.
1 Stick to a Routine
It’s easier to know you’re on track and keeping on top of tasks by sticking to a routine. Plan each day and stick to the plan, as far as is possible. Human beings are creatures of habit. When our daily activities are chaotic, we can start to feel overwhelmed or out of control. Divide your working day into hourly slots and plan activities accordingly. It’s also important to ‘own your schedule’. If someone asks you to do something which doesn’t fit with your planned routine, don’t be afraid to tell them that they will have to wait.
2 Use a Prioritised List
Using a ‘to-do’ list is a popular method of keeping on top of tasks. However, it’s important to remember that not all tasks have equal importance. Write your to-do list but don’t stick to a chronological order in which the tasks get completed. Prioritise your list, put high priority items straight to the top. If you focus your energy on the more crucial tasks, you reap rewards immediately. Keep the low-priority tasks for down-time.
3 Look After Your Body
There is a great saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup”. This is never more pertinent than when referring to your physical health. Think of your body as the foundation for all your success – a foundation that needs nurturing. Ensure you are exercising regularly, eating well and sleeping enough. Look out for any destructive habits, such as regular drinking or drug taking during periods of stress. Are these habits really benefiting you and serving your higher purpose? If not, eliminate them!
Meditation really is a great tool when focussing your mind on success and setting your intentions. It’s shaken off its old connotations of being something only practised by hippies and religious gurus. In fact, some regular practitioners are the people perceived as the most successful in the modern world. People such as the late Steve Jobbs, Oprah Winfrey, Rupert Murdoch and Elon Musk have all used meditation and credit it with bringing enormous benefits.
“Meditation more than anything in my life was the biggest ingredient of whatever success I’ve had.” That’s what Ray Dalio, the billionaire founder of Bridgewater Associates has to say on the matter.
If you’d like to try meditation, have a look at our article (link)
5 Look After Your Mind
Think of your mind as a muscle. Just like the muscles in your arms and legs, it gets stronger with regular use and weaker when neglected. Try to stimulate your mind on a regular basis. This might be from reading articles in your favourite publication, taking time to do mental puzzles or watching motivational videos, such as TED Talks. Choose something that interests you and make it part of your routine. Research has found that learning new skills and information creates new neural pathways in your brain. New neural pathways increase your brain’s capacity to process and disseminate information.
Habits of Successful People – Part Two continues to look at a further five habits that researchers have found prevalent in successful people. In the second part, we’ll take a look at regular communication, questioning to improve your results, the importance of taking time out, getting comfortable with saying ‘no’ and reviewing your progress to keep your path to success on course.
Do you have any habits you believe have contributed to your success? Illumine would love to hear about them.
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