As I’ve gone about reflecting on my goals, my thoughts keep drawing to the idea of creating a Top 10 Lessons I’ve Learned About Success, which is what I am going to share with you today. You can also find these lessons throughout my books, my blog, in the emails I send out and they are the essence of what I teach in my workshops. These principles for success will help you become Decisive, Empowered and Resilient in life.
#10 The higher you rise, the louder the crowd will get.
This is a true fact. Picture a mountain, the crowd where most people are is at the base of the mountain. As you rise higher, you’ve figured out how to separate yourself from the majority and instead of just getting up and doing what needs done to achieve better results, most will just create a lot of noise in hopes you get distracted and tumble back down the mountain side.
Anyone who complains, negates or downplays your dreams are simply people who refuse to set their own and require anything of themselves. Good news, eventually you rise high enough you won’t even hear them. They are still down there hollering but they won’t even be on your radar. Relax and keep going, and stay focused on who you want to become.
#9 Learning, growth and change will be required.
One of the first realizations I had as a young adult was that I was always willing to learn, grown and change what wasn’t working. This quickly separated me from my peers. I saw this in school, in sports and in the workplace and almost 20 years later this success lesson still holds true everywhere I look. Those willing to learn and grow are those who achieve their goals and get results. They also tend to be happier, healthier and wealthier.
We have to give up the notion that we don’t need to change anything to get what we want. If that was the case we’d already have that which we want. Success is really the process of us evolving as a person, into the person capable of achieving our goal and becoming someone who can keep the results. Instead of resisting what is required, simply enjoy discovering who you are and who you can become and watching yourself grow. The ability to adapt is integral to your success.
#8 If you want something in life, you will have to get up and go get it.
Nobody owes us anything in life, nor do we owe anyone anything. Grasp this lesson and your life will completely change! Kindness given and received is a gift. Disappointment arrives when we hang onto misinterpretations of how life is to be but our misunderstandings don’t change the timeless, universal laws of life. Adjust your approach to life (mindset and beliefs) and life will change before your eyes, without giving away your personal power or demanding others give you theirs. This lesson is coupled with that of accountability and ownership of one’s life. Own everything that you are and do – it makes a big difference!
#7 Stick with Plan A
To achieve a big goal, one must set it, set that path and allow no other option. Every plan B, C and D are excuses which are waiting to manifest. Don’t even allow those options to exist. Real success, the kind that lasts requires focus and commitment. You can read more on how to Stick with Plan A via that link.
#6 We are always able to do more than we realize or want to admit.
Our weakness is not in that we are not able, but that we are unwilling to do what the goal requires of us. We fail when we lower the bar of expectation or remove it all together. If you want to achieve in life, it requires learning how to adhere to a set bar of expectation and then being willing to raise it again and again.
This lesson in life is so important I wrote an entire book on it! If you want to read the book go here: Raising the Bar for a Higher Level of Living.
We finally have many big professional sports team coaches stepping out and expressing this lesson – you don’t get a trophy just for breathing in life. Results and respect are earned. You can also read this article on having set bars of expectation.
#5 We have to do our part in life.
We must work at ourselves and begin rising into our highest self, our best self we can be at the moment, at this point in our life. God and the universe will take care of what we cannot, but we must do our part. We have to start acting in faith. This means we have to do our part (learning, growing and changing) while from our highest self (in faith) expecting that we will get the results we want (also in faith). We have to act boldly (not loudly but boldly) and with courage (faith).
Here’s another lesson in success that correlates with Lesson #10: Success is quiet and swift (bold). Success is not loud, obnoxious, demanding or lazy. Success is effort done quietly, diligently, decisively, with personal power (strength, wisdom and experience applied) that is resilient (unwavering, standing boldly believing in the creation of that which is yet unseen).
#4 Surrendering is the secret.
As soon as we let go of what we so desperately want – we release the floodgates for it to begin pouring in. Dare to dream it is possible, do what is necessary on your part to bring it to fruition, then let go of the outcome, the timing, the who and the how. Those who feel powerless will put a solid grip on what they can in life – this usually plays out in being on the extreme end of an area in life in which they feel they have some control over. This is a false sense of security. Real strength, security and resiliency is in surrendering – letting go of that which scares you into wanting to have absolute control over and grip on. When we release that grip miracles happen. Resiliency is simply trusting in yourself, in your wisdom, strength and ability to handle life as it occurs moment by moment. It comes with the practice of surrendering.
#3 Enjoy the journey.
The joy is not in the reward, the reward is a bonus.
Much joy is found in the process of learning, of failing, picking oneself up repeatedly, in getting wiser and stronger. The joy is in discovering how limitless we really are in life and rising to our highest self, to the best of our ability every day. The reward you receive for reaching your goal – it’s a perk, the frosting on the cake. If you are just in it for the reward you will likely fail – because you likely are not content and at peace without it. Start enjoying the process of personal growth and learning new things and that which your goal is all about. Learn to enjoy the struggles of trying, not getting it the first try (or the 40th) and even embrace the discomfort you feel.
Successful people LOVE setting new goals, not because they want some fancy reward to show off, but because it means they’ve found an opportunity to learn and grow and become more than who they were prior.
#2 Real Success Takes Time
If it comes quick and easy, it’s just as likely to leave quickly and easily. Success takes time, learning the skills, lessons and how to make it all work together takes time. So many people want shortcuts and rewards for free but the problem with this approach is huge! A shortcut cuts short how long you will be able to keep the reward! Go back to lesson #9 – success and goals require us to learn, grow and change – otherwise we’d already have what we want. If you don’t already have it that means you haven’t become the person who will truly cherish, enjoy and make the most of the reward.
Embrace the journey, no matter how long it takes for you to have grown and learned what your goal requires.
If you can be content in the process of getting there, you will be content whether you achieve the goal or not.
Stay focused on what you are doing and who you are becoming. Use mentors as guidebooks to help you along but don’t compare your journey and the time it takes to reach your goals with anyone else. Those who seem to magically make appear huge achievements have either been working diligently in the quiet for a long time or they found a short cut and if you watch closely you will see their success fade just as quickly.
#1 Success is…
Success is a state of being. This state is an intricate blend of opposites that once understood and added to one’s toolbox, can be accessed and utilized at any moment to create and control one’s day and outcome. It’s a bit of a balancing act, letting go of the extreme ends of everything and learning to apply a higher approach to that which we do instead. Here is what success is not: fame or fortune. Those are bonuses of becoming someone capable of handling those extra blessings.
Success in life is learning how to enjoy life, in accepting ourselves and in rising to our highest self. It’s about learning to own yourself, your personal choices and power and discovering that you are the creator of your life experiences. In this is a journey, a process of blending, applying, undoing and remolding of everything that we have been, are in the moment and want to be tomorrow. Success is about learning to listen to that still inner voice of your spirit – that calls you to explore this life you’ve been given and to really experience what life has to offer. It’s about curiosity for ourselves, for others and for things yet unknown or seen.
When we reach our final hour, however old we may be, if we can say that we have lived our life the fullest, we found ourselves capable of exploring and experiencing it to the reaches of the dreams we could envision for ourselves- this is success. Life is waiting for you to rise up and experience it to maximum potentiality. Use these tips for personal growth and goals to rise to that next level.
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