So you want success in everything you do? Of course. Who doesn’t? I reckon everyone in the world since birth has both the instinct to survive and the desire to be successful. However, as a person grows, the definition of success becomes subjective to their own perception, experiences and environment. Some people might define success as being famous, wealthy and powerful while others see success as having freedom, good health, inner peace, true friends and a loving family. Everyone can have different views in this respect but what is success anyways?
“Success is an accomplishment of an aim or purpose” – that is the definition that pops up when you google it. Broad as it may seem, this meaning tells us all that we can be successful everyday in everything we do. Such that, depending on our own personal goals, we can actually become successful by achieving one activity at a time towards a specific purpose or goal. Even if we fail, when get back up and try again, that is success!
It means, success is never with the absence of failures, bumps, bruises or setbacks. If we trace the history of the word success, it actually comes from the latin word “succedere” which means “come close after”. Such that while success may be subjective to our own terms and measurement, it is the journey towards how we come close to something we aspire matters.
For example, if your aim is to be healthy, success comes from eating the right kinds of food, exercising daily and meditation. If your goal is to be wealthy, you may start with learning the values of money, saving, investing and getting out of debt first. If you want to keep a happy family, you spend quality time with them, express your love and care. All these are just a couple illustrations which I know there are still a myriad of them that we want in life.
How to be Successful?
By what means can we get the things we want? Exactly how to achieve the certain state we desire?
1. Know what you want
Do you want to be a famous superstar, an artist, a sports icon, a tv or movie personality? Or perhaps you’re aiming at having a successful career or a profitable business? How about living a comfortable life for you and your family? How do you want it to look like?
Start with the end in mind. Create your own picture of success. Define what is it that you want to have or achieve. Not that which the society tells you or what other people predicts about you. Rather know what is it that’s burning inside you which you long to be making, doing or achieving. Why? Write them.
From brainyquote.com –
Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do. – Pope John XXIII
Create the vision of what you want yourself to be, who is (or are) with you and how you want to achieve it. Don’t limit yourself. “Believe that you are worthy of a successful future, regardless of your past.”
It doesn’t matter who you are, where you came from. The ability to triumph begins with you. Always. – Oprah Winfrey
Therefore it is not the past that will determine your future. Everyday is a second chance to wake up to a day in our new life. We are given a new day each day to create a vision of our future. And no matter how old you are now, you are never too young or old for going after what you want.
2. Plan on how to achieve it
No matter how lofty your plans are, according to the famous Benjamin Franklin (one of the founding fathers of the United States), –
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. – Benjamin Franklin
You see, we are all created equal as we all have 24 hours a day to use for a meaningful 365 days a year. However, a lot of us find our days running away from us. It can be all too easy to just live everyday yet drifting away.
Thus, what makes the successful people different is
- they use their time wisely
- they are always proactive rather than reactive
- and they never give up until they reach their goal.
This is because they have a plan – a roadmap or guide to doing something or achieving something.
So what is a plan? According to Alan Likein, it is the act of bringing the future into the present so that you do something about it now. In this phase, the dream is no longer just a vision. It becomes a plan.
“Don’t call it a dream. Call it a plan.” – anonymous
So, you might have that dream of travelling the world! Perhaps, that longing to have a comfortable life for you and family or loved ones. Or maybe it is your heart’s desire to be performing on national tv or be a sensational talent. Well, plan for it!
How? After you’ve written down your dream, look around and examine within, what resources are there around that you can use and talents inside of you that you can develop to make that dream a reality. Set two to three activities a day that will make you closer towards achieving your goal. Commit to it and set some timeline! Is it creating a budget and saving $XX a day for x number of years, selling old stuff for new equipments to practice and record your talent while preparing for the next X Factor audition, or maybe learning new language meanwhile reading tips and tricks to backpacking.
Why do we do this? Because by faith, we do always believe that something good is about to happen. And because of this faith, we plan. By planning, one is able to see the bigger picture, prioritise, focus and work smarter than harder.
3. Take Action
Indeed, what are plans for if you don’t act on it? In fact, they say – “Don’t tell me what you believe. Show me what you do.” Doesn’t this line hit hard? Yes indeed! Because success is a habit.
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is not an act, but a habit! – Aristotle
And habit is doing things daily regardless of feelings, motivation or passion. If you are tired of thinking when are you going to be healthy, happy, wealthy or inspired, you will never be. Unless you change something and decide on doing it intentionally now. John C Maxwell said this exactly –
“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in something you do daily.” – John Maxwell
Remember, the future starts with the now and the everyday. Habits start with now. So do it now and implement it daily! (I also recommend you check “The 5 second rule” book by Mel Robbins to get you fuelled up in starting out your goals and managing your tasks “always now” by doing the five second rule.) Remember,
“Successful people are those with successful habits.” – Brian Tracy
Like other achievers, try to begin each day by referring to your goals, monitor where you’re at and get set to accomplish the tasks you mapped out. This way, you won’t be able to ignore doing even the tasks you enjoy less during the day.
Just keep doing it! There is never an overnight success. According to Tom Clancy (New York Times’ best-selling thriller books author), overnight success is ten years in the making.
“An overnight success is ten years in the making.”
Even Steve Jobs (former Apple CEO) says: “Overnight success stories take a long time.” This is based on his own story on how he started the company from his own garage, got fired from his own company, until he gets back at becoming the CEO where he continued on the tech revolution.
You see, sometimes the things we do today is no longer as exciting as it was the first day or when we have planned it. Thus, there is always one thing that we need to learn from the athletes – They train. They do it at least five days a week and twice or thrice times a day. They even never stop after the race is over. In fact, the workouts they do are often more demanding than the race or game itself.
So the secret to success is – perseverance. Know why you’re doing it and why you started.
Persistence is the act of stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm. That as according to Winston Churchill. And when you’re at the brink of giving up, remember this:
“You never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.” – Tom Hiddleston
Go on! Keep believing, doing and achieving! You never know you’re already close to your dreams.
5. Be Grateful
Turn trials into blessings! Gratitude is a powerful process for shifting your energy and bringing more of what you want in your life. Be grateful for what you already have and you will attract more good things. It is not the happy people who are thankful. It is thankful people who are happy.
Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgiving, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings. – William Arthur Ward
Believe that gratitude is an open door to abundance. Be thankful for what you have and you’ll end up having more. Because if you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never ever have enough. Remember, there is always, always something to be thankful for! Like waking up each new day to new beginnings. Having a healthy body and a sound mind. Being able to hang out with great friends. All these are something to be grateful for.
Gratitude turns what we have into enough and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. – Melody Beattie
So daily as you wake up and take a deep breath – be thankful! Before going to bed, pause for a while and reflect on the day that has ended. Don’t just whisper it, write it.
6. Enjoy What You Do
Have you noticed that when you’re doing what you always love, you just get lost track of time? It seems like the hours are short and there is never enough of it. Even if sometimes frustrations and setbacks come along, you just learn to accept and move on!
As a matter of fact, Steve Jobs said this exactly –
“The only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.” – Steve Jobs
Indeed! So, I hope that you find success in everything you do! In doing so, I wish you find your purpose and meaning in your life’s journey. Pursue!
Thank you for reading!
Your Local Guide to helping you create beautiful moments.
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