Success takes a lot of hard work. If it were easy, everyone would be lining up to do it. So here are 10 things I see successful people do...
1. Be real. (This is hard to do because it means we have to open up and show the good, bad, and the ugly.) And since many of us grew up in the TV generation, we are used to seeing stuff that doesn't exist. Don't believe me? Go watch 30 minutes and ask yourself if any of it is genuine or unbiased. Sure it might be entertaining but even that's changing. People are more moved by real, factual social experiences online (someone's kid sing Elvis) than they are with MTV's scripted "Real World". (Is that even a show still?)
2. Build influence. Stop wasting your time and energy thinking you can control anything. You only control your response. Once you sort this out (and it's a tough one), you will have a powerful tool in your toolbox. The time you save worrying will give you the time to focus on building a great support group around you to learn from and interact with: a "net worth" (not a network).
3. Live on the edges or not at all. (I love this one. Hugh McLeod, another one of my mentors sent me a great email yesterday with the visual to the right). It speaks perfectly to the idea of living in the middle. So often we live in the middle. Pick a side. And the edge is sharp!
4. Pace yourself. Pace your work and life and the space in between. This is hard. I'm speaking from personal experience. People often ask "how do you do it all"... my hints are in this post! :) It takes time. Life is a marathon. When you try to be superwoman or superman, it means you are watching too much TV. (See Tip #1)
5. Learn and practice focus. I used to think multi-tasking was real. It isn't. If you don't focus on a few, you will spin. Part of what helps me focus is finding and holding on to my mojo.
6. Connect and Collaborate. Build on others great work. Long gone are the days of the blank sheet of paper. Things move at warp speed so quality and quick to market is key. If you have great things, share them and let others build on them. If you see something great, build on it and share the love/credit. Successful people know it takes a village and they collaborate.
7. Take care of yourself. Our bodies and our minds are the best gifts we have been given. How we care and feed for them is another matter. If you let yourself go, nothing will feel in control. I spent years locked up in a body I hated because I ate too much. I've slowly re-learned how to nourish my body without going overboard. Sleep, water, and exercise. Yep... yep... and yep. Have you ever noticed how much you get done and how great you feel when your basic needs are maintained? I could go on forever. If you are really interested....google "Maslow's Hierarchy of Need".
8. Learn from everything. Stop focusing on age, race, sex, and all the outside characteristics you see in people and situations. We can learn from anything and everyone if we CHOOSE to see it that way. If you adopt a mindset that "there's something to learn here", you will have another powerful tool in your toolbox. I listen and engage with 6 month year olds, my 3-year-old and some of my closest friends are pushing 60+. (My dad and mom are 70ish and I still learn from them.) Repeat after me: age is just a number. Young. Old. Just words. Nothing more.
9. Deal with the past and let it go. I know it makes so much sense, huh? Deal with the past...what does that mean? We all grew up and came from somewhere. We had parents. Some of us didn't. We grew up poor, rich or somewhere in the middle. We went to college or we didn't. Some of us had kids first and then got married. Some of us dealt with loss or abuse of varying degrees. The point is you have a unique "backstory". Know it well. Figure out what part to the story you are continuing with -- the good or the bad. Oh I still look back but only to see how far I've come. Life is a marathon...a journey... and our past is what shapes our present and future.
10. Listen and read. If you've made it to this part of the post, congratulations, you're successful. You are looking for ways to stretch and grow. Keep listening, reading, and sharing what you learn. That can help you with #1-9 above.
Now back to work. You have lots of success ahead of you....
Is anyone out there with me on these? Anything missing? Anything you'd like to add? It's my turn to listen and read.