Navigating through life can be like a rollercoaster ride. Most successful people passed through a lot before they got to that peak you see today. Really, nothing good comes easily. But there are some tips and keys to success in life which I believe will help you go further, and I want to share them with you today.
I’m sure you’ve come across so many articles and books on “how to be successful”. Perhaps you haven’t been able to find the answer to your big question, which is what brings you here.
What is “success”?
Everyone has their own perception of what success looks like, but to be successful, you must ensure you are tilting towards the right ideology. For most economists, success is basically measured by your ability to satisfy your unlimited wants (to a large extent) using the available scarce resources. This, in other words, equates success to financial freedom.
But then philosophically speaking, “success” is a broader concept and shouldn’t be narrowed down to only “financial freedom”. To a philosopher, success is the ability to obtain whatever gives you ultimate happiness. Of course, it could be money, love, or simply a peaceful home.
However, from all indications, and from every definition provided by several experts, one can say that success is simply the ability to find a purpose in life. And honestly, when you find your purpose in life, you will be happy. That explains why people who are truly successful are often happier in life.
Success is not all about how much you’ve got in your bank account (although we really wouldn’t mind having a lot in there). It’s not all about those sleek cars, or the expensive jewelry, shoes, and clothes. It’s actually about finding your purpose – which is your source of happiness.
See, there are people who have all the money and luxury that life can possibly offer, yet, they are not happy. It’s simply because they’ve not found their true purpose.
The reason you are super happy when you pass a final exam is because at that point in time, you literally achieved your purpose. So, passing an ordinary exam makes you more successful than a wealthy man who is unhappy.
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Success and happiness
Life is meaningless without happiness. Everything you do, you do it to be happy.
No wonder Tony Robbins asserted that; “success is to live your life in a way that causes you to feel a ton of pleasure and very little pain — and because of your lifestyle, have the people around you feel a lot more pleasure than they do pain”.
Just so you know, you cannot talk about success without purpose, and you can’t talk about purpose without happiness. So, in order to find your purpose and happiness, you must first understand what exactly success means to you.
Understanding what success means to you will make you appreciate this article more!
Now, pay attention, this particular piece is going to be a realistic one… As realistic as possible. Right here, I will take you through a practical guide towards success, because success is not all about what you know, but mainly about what you can do.
Alright, let’s get to it. Here are 12 real keys to success in life:
1. Envision Your Success
Every success story starts with a dream. Truly successful people have visions and it is that vision that propelled them to what they are today.
So, the first key to success in life is to envision your success. Dream about it. Imagine yourself being somewhere great in the near future.
The best way to do this is to find a quiet moment and ask yourself; where do you want to be in the next five or ten years?
Meditate on it.
The moment you ask yourself this question and reflect on it deeply, that’s when your big dreams start. The power of dreams cannot be overemphasized.
Accordingly, Benjamin Mays insinuated; the tragedy of life is not about failing to achieve your dreams but is mainly about not having any dream to achieve in life.
2. Plan For Success
After you have envisioned where you want to be, the next thing is to plan towards that dream. You are fully responsible for your success. And part of how to take responsibility for your success is by planning towards it.
Failing to make plans towards your success is like planning for your failure! The significance of effective planning can never be overstated as far as success is concerned. The moment you start planning towards success, you are already living successfully, because planning is like culture to successful people.
To plan effectively, here are some great ways to start:
- Set some realistic goals to have clarity and direction towards anything you want to achieve.
- Give yourself a deadline – this will motivate you to pursue your goals earnestly.
- Outline some strategies on how to achieve those goals.
- Be practical; take it gradually – every little step matters.
- Finally, ensure you follow up.
3. Sleep And Wake Up Early
Success can easily be measured by your level of productivity. And there is no way you can be productive when you have sleeping problems. Sleeping adequately can go a long way to stabilize your life. It relaxes your body and mind – and improves your general wellbeing. Consequently, productivity will not be so difficult to achieve.
Remember, Benjamin Franklin once said; early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise. We all agree that Benjamin knows his stuff, so sleeping and waking up early has always been one of the keys to success in life.
4. Be Decisive, Disciplined, And Determined
I call these three words “The 3-Ds”… Because they strictly go hand in hand, in hand.
When it comes to living a successful life, you have to be decisive, disciplined, and determined. First, you have to decide to be successful. This decision comes with your willingness and zeal to start off the journey towards success.
After you have decided (to succeed), the next in line is the determination to succeed. You need to be strong-willed in order to emerge a winner. Remember, nothing good comes to you easily. There will be lots of tumbling blocks. But your ability to remain tenacious is what truly matters.
The next is discipline. Aside from determination, you need to be disciplined enough to stick to your decision until you achieve your desired result. Discipline is the ability to remain steadfast in your mission without deviating or behaving in a way that undermines your entire effort.
Being disciplined makes you control and adjust your behavior to fall in line with your decision (goals).
In a nutshell, when you combine these three and make them your guiding principles, you will simply be invincible!
5. Say No To Procrastination
Say this with me, “Not today, procrastination, not today.” Then repeat this sentence everyday – life hack!
Okay in reality, one of the greatest enemies of prosperity is procrastination. It is like a cage that entraps any potential progress you make. In order to succeed, you must take action! Once you fail to make a move, there is no way you can get any result.
But then, procrastination ensures you never make any move or take any action. Unfortunately, most of us are not free from this cage. We always find ourselves postponing our tasks from time to time.
However, in case you missed it, there is only a little distinction between procrastination and failure. That’s why saying no to procrastination is one of the keys to success in life.
For instance, you might often be distracted by your mobile device, Netflix, social media, etc. These distractions are partly the reason you keep putting off important tasks.
The best way to deal with this bad habit is by disciplining yourself. The moment you embrace self-discipline, you’ll learn to shun all the stuff that distracts you during work hours. Before you know it, your level of productivity will increase.
6. Improve Your Skills
In order for you to emerge one of the very best, you must be willing to put in your best. If you are good at something, you have to work even harder to improve – that is; if you really want to be successful.
The keys to success in life are not far from your ability to stand out in whatever you do. Whether you’re a writer, artist, doctor, lawyer, or pharmacist. You can only be successful in your profession if you improve your mastery and aptitude.
Here are some ideas on how to boost your skills:
- Buy and read relevant books.
- Enroll in relevant professional courses.
- Further your education.
- Improve your credentials.
- Get a job that is in line with your skill(s).
7. Be Passionate
Here is one statement of fact; the more passionate you are about success, the more possible it is for you to attain it. Having a passion for what you do will go a long way to propel you to the next level.
For instance, when you are enthusiastic about your job, it will feel more like a hobby than a job. After all, you love the job, and hence, you will hardly get overworked.
In a nutshell, the end-product of passion is efficiency. Therefore, you have to embrace what you love with passion in order to succeed in it.
8. Mingle With The Right Set Of People
A wise person once said, “Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are.” What this implies is that your friends have a far-reaching effect on who you are. If you associate with negative people who are pessimistic about their future, there is no way you’ll be positive and optimistic!
Remember, the wrong company corrupts good character. Cliché, perhaps, but true, definitely. Always ensure you surround yourself with positive people who will drag you closer to prosperity.
9. Stay Committed And Work Hard
Commitment, that’s what it is. One can easily argue that hard work and commitment can take you to places where talent and skills can’t.
If you plan to be successful, you’re determined to be disciplined till the end, and you’re passionate about your success, but you lack commitment – spoiler alert, you won’t make much headway. Your hard work matters a lot.
Breaking a piece of rock with a hammer can take 999 blows without showing a single crack, but just one final blow (the 1000th) ends up shattering the rock. That doesn’t mean the 999 hits were useless. In fact, they were the most important hits because with “999 pieces of hard work”, it only takes just one more hit to shatter the rock.
10. Embrace Your Downfalls
There is a popular saying which insinuates that the failure of a man is not the end of his existence. One of the best definitions of success is that success is the final result of so many failures. It’s normal to embark on a path and experience lots of stumbling blocks.
Life is not only about getting knocked down, but about rising again to your feet. You have to embrace your downfalls, learn from them, and improve for the better. And that, people, is how you actually achieve success.
11. Practice Self-Investment
Another major key to success in life is to invest in yourself as much as you can. In fact, self-investment is the best form of investment anyone can make. Because, hello, you benefit from it directly.
And truly, most successful people you see today invested a whole lot in themselves.
Some realistic ways to invest in yourself are:
- Read and expand your mental horizon.
- Do and learn something new every day.
- Improve your skills and career growth.
- Spend time and money on what you really need to live a good life.
12. Believe In Yourself
You can’t get very far if you don’t believe in yourself. When you are engulfed in the shadow of self-doubt, you will be pessimistic and mostly doubt your abilities.
However, believing in yourself generates certain positive energy that can take you to places you never imagined. In essence, you’ll be practically unstoppable.
On a final note, these 12 keys to success in life will be useless without your intentional effort towards putting them to practice. You simply have to decide, be determined, be passionate, and above all, embrace self-discipline in order to achieve success.