I’ve been looking at my life over the last year or so, and thinking about what specifically sets successful people apart from others.  My life has changed dramatically in the last 5 years, and it accelerated dramatically about a 15 months or so ago when I changed careers.  I started wondering, what do successful people do differently from people who are less successful?  What is it about those things that they do that makes them successful?

5 Things Successful People Do

  1. Set Realistic, Achievable, Aggressive Goals –  Seriously, if you’re not going to do anything else, you have to do this.  You’re not going to go anywhere if you don’t have any idea of what it is you want to do. Not all outcomes are created equally, and while you can float along in life, it will only take you so far.
  2. Stick With It – The things that are most worth having are worth working on.  But that means sticking with them.  Persistence pays off.  It can be hard to stick with things when the shit hits the fan, but that is likely precisely when you need to stick with it.
  3. Make Continuous Improvements – Things rarely work out perfectly the first time, so the key is to make continuous improvements over a longer period of time.  Every time you do something, stop and analyze how you did on it.  Then figure out what you need to change to do it better.  I’m sure you’ll find many ways to improve, and can focus on making those changes, and seeing how they impact the outcome.
  4. Know When to Fight – It is worth knowing when to fight, and when to just ignore something.  Just because you aren’t arguing with someone doesn’t mean that you are agreeing with them.  It just means that you’re not wasting your breath arguing with them.  Let’s face it, not everyone is going to like you, or respect you.  Arguing with them isn’t going to change that.  Save your breath and energy, and focus on positive things.
  5. Let Little Things Go – Sometimes you have to decide when to let something go, and concentrate your energy on the big picture.  For me, that happens in a lot of different ways.  I have gotten help with the yard for instance.  That means that I don’t have to focus on pulling weeds, and mowing grass.  I can focus my energy on spending time doing the things that have a bigger impact, and make more of a difference.

The key here is focusing your energy on what is important.  Figure out which steps you personally need to follow to ensure your success.  That will require actually doing something towards those goals.

What about you?  What things do you think that successful people do?

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