Many things in life are uncertain… but success doesn’t have to be one of these!
Sure, no one can foretell the future. However, there are ways to predict and make a habit of success, and these don’t involve crystal gazing, astrology or tarot cards. This is no secret formula known only by a few… or if it is, I’ll be revealing it here!
What I have for you are principles and practices that, when applied properly, will guarantee you to succeed in all areas of your life. Some of these are common knowledge and you may already be familiar with them. Others may be new or presented in a way that involves easily digestible steps you can follow and implement in your day to day life.
All of these you can start with right now, so let’s begin (or continue) your journey to success and make it predictable and part of your daily habits and way of thinking. The formula first involves your mindset and how you think about success, and reinforces it with more physical rituals and routines. “That’s it?” you may be saying. The answer is YES! Let’s go through these now.
ONE – Taking Control of Your Mind
I’m getting into a bit of psychology here. But, it’s essential to understand how your mind works. Let’s start with your subconscious.
This is part of the mind responsible for automatic functions and thought processes that you aren’t aware of. A simple example is breathing. You don’t have to think to breathe.
Also, remember when you were learning to drive. It took a while to learn which pedals to use. Soon, you didn’t have to think about which pedal to step on when you needed to stop or speed up.
This is your subconscious at work. Although a misnomer, you might also call this muscle memory. Still, it’s part of your subconscious.
Your fears, worries and pain are also stored in your subconscious.
For instance, you might not remember why you are afraid of spiders. You might have had a bad experience with these eight-legged creatures as a child. So, seeing one of these can immediately cause anxiety as an adult.
If you want to conquer your fears, including the fear of failure, you have to tap into your subconscious mind and change it.
Your self-worth is also programmed into your subconscious mind. Many people succeed because they simply believe they deserve to.
For discussion purposes, this is where all memories and past events are stored but are beyond your reach, no matter how hard you try to recall them. For instance, do you remember your first day in kindergarten? Some do, most won’t.
Your Conscious Mind
This contains all your thoughts, feelings, desires and memories you are aware of now or any other time. While you’re reading this, what are you thinking?
Your conscious mind is always aware of other stimuli received by your other senses. As you read this, you might hear a car passing, smell the aroma of food from the oven or feel a pet bumping into your leg.
Change your mindset
I’ve heard this line from several people – “Expect the worst, so you don’t get disappointed.” Many will argue that this is good advice. I completely disagree.
This isn’t the slogan of successful people. I haven’t heard them giving such advice because it’s the wrong mindset.
Perhaps, hoping for the best and preparing for the worst is better. Instead of waiting for challenges to overwhelm you, you employ ways to make sure these don’t defeat you.
Instead, this adage has always been my guide:
“What you think and believe, you can achieve.”
Also, don’t underestimate the power of self-fulfilling prophecies. When you expect the worst, it’s much more likely to actually happen. Why? Because your subconscious is expecting it, and it affects your outlook negatively. Therefore you don’t spend the energy and enthusiasm you need to make whatever you are doing successful.
Always desire success in your life. Decide and commit now. This is the first step in changing your mindset.
The next is changing your beliefs with the help of positive self-talk. Here are some examples:
- I deserve success.
- I deserve a happy life.
- I am worthy of love.
- Everything will turn out okay.
- I will no longer be afraid of spiders.
When you make a conscious effort to be more optimistic, this becomes part of your subconscious mind, influencing your behavior. You gain confidence, avoid negativity and take more risks.
Your Business Mindset
Positivity leads to more good decisions and choices. However, as an entrepreneur, it doesn’t end there. Your beliefs and self-talk should include these:
- I see challenges as opportunities.
- I focus on solutions and not problems.
- I think outside of the box.
- Competition drives me.
- I don’t fear failures. These are learning experiences.
Now, after reading this first section, you may be thinking “This is just cheap, regular corporate inspirational stuff I always hear!” And that’s true. By itself, just thinking positive thoughts won’t get you very far. The problem is that many people stop on this first step and go no further, then get disillusioned when things go sour.
Instead, you have to back up your positive thoughts with positive actions and reinforcements. But you can’t progress without at least a positive, successful mindset. So practice these “inspirational quotes” and let’s continue onto the next step!
TWO – Vision
How do you see yourself years from now? What do you hope to become when you reach your peak as an entrepreneur? Vision is long-term and can be open-ended. It’s your destination in life. A vision is hard to achieve and always beyond accumulating money.
Vision is different from goals. Goals are results you hope to achieve soon. Vision is WHY you want to achieve your goals.
For instance, if my vision is to be the best parent, there’s no limit to what “best” could mean. No rating system exists, and standards might be higher a decade from now.
Many insist that a vision should be quantifiable. However, others would argue that the best ones are immeasurable. Look at the following examples of vision:
- To make people happy. (Disney)
- To operate the world’s best premium airline. (Qantas)
- To create a better everyday life for the many people. (IKEA)
- A computer on every desk and in every home. (Bill Gates)
- To be the best retailer in the hearts and minds of consumers and employees. (Walmart)
How do you discover your vision? Try the next step below.
The Power of Visualization
Creating a strong mental image of what you want in the future can help you achieve your dreams. You can also imagine the challenges you’ll face, so you’ll be ready for these.
Set some time and find a quiet place. Picture a scene decades from now. What kind of profession and lifestyle are you enjoying? What type of business are you running?
I suggest writing or typing your vision. It will help you narrow down what you want to achieve.
Visualization can also be used for short-term goals. For instance, imagine giving that sales presentation that will open new doors for you. In your mind, go through the necessary steps.
Lastly, when you visualize yourself in the future, take note of your emotions. Are you happy with that image, or are you feeling “Meh”?
Why settle for less? Many big businesses had humble beginnings. The Walt Disney Company, Google, Apple, Microsoft and YouTube all started small, often in parents’ garages.
Thinking big doesn’t mean being unrealistic. Just keep in mind what Theodore Roosevelt once said:
“Aim for the stars but keep your feet on the ground.”
By thinking of your vision and the Big Picture in your life or your business, your positive thinking now has the mental fuel to help you get up and succeed every day. Even on days where you are not feeling inspired, just by thinking about your vision of the future (and even looking at it) will help you move on to greater things.
THREE – Stay in Shape Both Physically and Mentally
I’m sure you know what needs to be done to remain healthy. You need the energy to pursue your dreams.
Successful people will tell you that there is a connection between physical activity and success.
Daily exercise protects you from diseases and releases chemicals like endorphins, which reduce stress. Regular physical activity improves cognitive functions, memory and focus.
Haven’t you experienced a eureka moment while taking short walks? It’s not a coincidence.
Also, eat right and stay hydrated. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a juicy steak occasionally and your favorite drink. Just don’t forget to maintain a balanced diet and drink lots of water.
Don’t forget about sleep. Doctors recommend between seven to eight hours of bedtime. People sometimes think that they’re fine with less. Whatever works for you may not be sound advice if, in reality, you don’t get enough rest.
Lastly, aside from exercise, I suggest solving puzzles, meditation and learning a new skill to keep your mind sharp. You’ll need all your brain cells functioning if you want to succeed in life.
While vision gives you the mental energy to succeed, your ritual of healthy exercise, diet and routines gives you the physical energy to keep going.
FOUR – Be Accountable
You can create a checklist to remind you what you need to accomplish daily. There are many apps as well that can take the place of a list.
A great way to plan your day, week, month and year is “The 12 Week Year“, which is not only a flexible system that adjusts to your lifestyle, but is also designed to make you far more productive on a daily basis. I use this every day. In a nutshell, instead of thinking of yearly goals, you think of 12 week goals. This makes goal-setting a lot more realistic, as you can better visualize a 3 month time period over a 1 year time period.
Another effective way is to have an accountability partner, like a mentor, business partner, spouse or friend who will check on you regularly and keep you on track.
Your accountability partner should be someone you won’t let down or take for granted. And that person shouldn’t be accountable to you.
Somebody who is pursuing success like you makes for a great accountability partner as well, as you can both be accountable to each other. Meet once a week or once a month, go through your goals, and discuss how you’ve progressed, what you didn’t get done and why. Avoiding the disappointed look of your accountability partner is a great way to inspire you to “get things done!”
FIVE – Practice Habits For Success
Now that you have developed a successful mindset, a vision and healthy habits to fuel it, and a system of planning and accountability to implement success, it’s time to develop daily routines to stay on track. It will be hard at first to remain consistent every day. But soon, you’ll practice habits without any conscious effort.
My suggestion is to create a list of daily activities like this:
- Mindset /Affirmations. In the morning, begin the day with positive self-talk and mental exercises. This could be meditation, breathing exercises or something else that helps you power your day.
- Imagination/Visualizing. Visualize the day ahead of you.
- Daily Review. Review what happened yesterday. Was there something you could improve upon? What needs to be done today?
- Exercise / Movement. If you prefer to work out at home instead of outside, invest in a stationary bike. You’ll not regret it. Ten to twenty minutes of riding daily will strengthen your heart, lungs and muscles.
- Daily Planner. Always make a plan for the days ahead.
- Food and Water. Watch your intake daily. Successful people mind what they eat and drink.
- Have your chosen accountability partner check on you daily. Texting will do.
- Know when to stop working and go to bed. Also, save the binge-watching for one day a week. Better yet, use the extra time for family.
The Use of Triggers
Before bedtime, I place my workout clothes in a spot I’m not going to miss. Others use apps to remind them to exercise in the morning.
I know a person who puts small round stickers on his watch’s band. Signs, posters, places and persons can be your triggers to develop habits for success.
Find what works for you, then make it a daily habit.
Start applying these steps in your daily life and you will be successful. Make a conscious effort to believe, and let go of all the negativity holding you back. Remember that success begins in the mind, and physical habits and practices turns this success into reality.
This was also an episode of my podcast, The Growth Booth. Please click here to watch or listen to Making Success Predictable or download the transcription below:
Other episodes of The Growth Booth you may be interested in include:
How to Get More Done in 12 Weeks Than Most People Can In 12 Months
Ever wanted more time in your day? Or to be able to get more things done without the pressure of deadlines? Good news… there’s a powerful process for doing just this.
An Unconventional Framework For Success
They say “success leaves clues” but what are the clues? And what are the variables that dictate your bottom line in business?
Realize Your Full Potential Through Focused Deep Work
Would you like to work less but get MUCH better results? If so, then Deep Work is a concept you need to explore!
For these and upcoming podcasts visit Thegrowthbooth.com where we talk about online business, mindset, and lifestyle freedom.
Episodes are released every Tuesday on these popular channels:
This was a journey from beginning to end. Nice read.
Of all these, number three is really where I stumble. Ever since I had to work from home I’ve neglected my physical health. This post might just be the push I needed…
Thanks as always Aidan!!
Yes, that is one of the dangers working from home. I make sure to stick to a routine, and I exercise every morning.
Five Practice Habits.. I know it will be hard at first.. But if you are determine, I know it will be easy.. Glad you shared these..Really helpful! Thanks Aidan
“Aim for the stars but keep your feet on the ground.” – That’s how I live my life.