‘Successful people’ are supposedly everywhere, flaunting their accomplishments while the rest of the world searches for a way to match them.
What are the secrets of success? There’s no clear path, and no one can say for sure what a person should do to get where they want to go.
What people can and do give advice on is what not to do – what should we definitely be avoiding if we want to succeed in life?
Fail to listen
“When you listen, you learn. When you learn, you get better. When you get better you start to have a vision, you start to over deliver, you get more creative, and all the other good things above.
“Listening is a form of improving relationships with others.
“Listening is a way to outsource good ideas since if you let many others talk, some of them will give you good ideas you might not have thought of.
“Buddha didn’t start a major religion by talking. It started because he sat under a tree and listened.
“Jesus spent 40 days in a desert. Listening.
“Everything that has moved history happened because of listening instead of talking. Talking inspires. But listening creates the inspiration.”
Leave their notepad at home
“I carry at all times a waiter’s pad. I have over 100 waiter’s pads.
“In my pocket right now is one. In the table next to where I sleep is one.
“Saul Bellow once said, ‘You never have to rewrite what you write in the middle of the night’.
“How many times do you think of a great idea and you think, ‘this is so GREAT I will never forget it’ and then you forget it?”
Neglect their health and wellbeing
“You can’t succeed if you are sick in bed. You can’t succeed if you spent all night the night before reading your wife’s emails because you can’t trust her. You can’t succeed if you aren’t grateful for being given at least the chance to be something better than what you are now.
“You can’t be perfect.
“But every day:
- Move, eat, sleep.
- Improve your relationships – Call a friend, surprise a spouse, be kind to your kids
- Be creative – only you know how to do this but at least write 10 random ideas a day
- Be grateful for where you are – this is the ‘now’ that people brag about”
Waste their time
“Most people spend time, but really successful people invest their time in things.
“By that, I mean they do things on which they expect a positive return on their time. They realize that time is the scarcest resource there is, and they place their bets on things that they expect to work out.
“It doesn’t mean they don’t take chances, but the best excel at knowing when to cut their losses and move on if something isn’t working out – whether that thing is a project, an investment, or a person.”
“One thing successful people never do is give up and accept defeat.
“I had so many damn chances myself to throw in the towel.
“Even now, having my own successful ventures I could have so easily given in because that was far easier to do than succeed – but I didn’t and this is something that is inherent in every successful person I know.”