Success is not about being lucky or born with a silver spoon in your mouth.
It’s not about having a golden handcuffs job either.
Success is born from a state of mind.
It comes from the inside and is nurtured until it fills your soul to the point where it overflows, touches everything around you, and turns it into gold.
Some people just own it — “Step by Step: How Elon Musk Built His
Success is nothing but a way of thinking that can transform anyone’s life into one of great satisfaction and reward. Perhaps you’re wondering why I didn’t say wealth or richness.
You’ll see why in the next paragraphs.
My goal is to share with you the experiences I’ve gained over the years.
Maybe what I have to offer will not enhance your life exponentially. There are no guarantees.
As with any other piece of information, though, it all depends on what you decide to do with what is given. The first thing to remember…
It’s a BUSINESS! Not a money machine!
Way too many people make the mistake of starting a business just to gain the almighty dollar.
Too many people focus solely on the potential profit of their business rather than considering if that particular business is even needed.
These selfish endeavors are a sure way to end up in the 90% failure statistics.
You don’t want to make those statistics, don’t you?
Then, start your business smartly.
Start by chasing needs.
Chase the deficiencies in service. Chase problems or thorns of society. This is where true success lies.
A business, in fact, should be rated by its need in society.
Your business is sure to fail when the driven forces behind it are selfish goals, such as excessive profit or your own happiness.
Putting society’s needs on the first place may mean later profits, but those profits will be bigger and more rewarding than you ever imagined.
Many years ago, I was dragged to an Amway seminar to listen to a coach talking about setting goals. It sounded like an interesting topic to me.
That is until he said his goal was to make 100,000 dollars by the end of the year.
I want to X this year is in my opinion not the best approach.
Needs should come first, or at least before any money goals.
We’ll talk more about this in the second part of this post.
Right now, you must understand that your goal is to engage the marketplace, and the marketplace will embrace you.
Do what you’re good at; overcompensate on your delivery and make sure you’re buckled up and ready for a long journey.
After all, ten dollars per month for the rest of your life is way better than a one-off 100 bucks right now.
And always keep in mind…
You only live once!
I followed many extremely successful people over the years and came to the conclusion that all of them entail certain characteristics.
There is a formula that defines success.
From all my experiences and travels, I compiled these general guidelines:
Live Life On Purpose vs. Living a Life of Quiet Desperation
Passion is the greatest motivator.
When you really love what you do, life unfolds like a great epic novel.
Doing what you don’t really believe in means living a life of quiet desperation that will merely get you through your days on Earth with the least amount of problems.
Living life on purpose means finding THE cause you are passionate about, the one you truly believe in and building a business around it.
Be 100% Responsible for Your Success or Failure
Today’s people find it easier to blame their failure on a variety of factors, from their parents to the government, and even on Trump.
It’s easier to play the victim than assume responsibility.
Those who hold this state of mind don’t understand they’re destined to failure. Playing the victim means losing the competition before it began.
Not holding yourself accountable for your failure or success means handing over the control of your life to the person or entity you’re blaming.
Be the Best
This should go without saying. You have to be the best in your field. An expert.
Being the best has nothing to do with talent, but a lot to do with ambition.
All successful people strive to be the best in what they do and are constantly taking paths for self-improvement to ensure they stay the best.
If you want to be successful, commit to yourself to become the best in your field, then work hard towards that goal. The easiest way to do this is to find out who is currently the best in your field and mirror their actions.
Be the powerful person you really are!
Most people don’t realize just how much power they hold.
Everyone possesses power. It is merely the “ability to act.”
There is one catch, though - you must take action to utilize this ability. It’s like bodybuilding; the more you exercise, the easier it gets.
After all, science has already proven that the neural transmitters in your brain get thicker and stronger the more you do certain things.
This applies to everything; you can even trick your brain for happiness.
Focus On the Right Things
Don’t let the hundreds of things you have to do and phone calls you have to take to distract you.
Sometimes, it may seem that you are the rope in a tug of war game, and everyone is competing for your attention.
Ranting and complaining never made anyone rich.
When problems arise, learn to focus on the solution and not the problem. Focusing is all about sacrificing the present for the future pay off.
Remember, however, that it’s not just about the destination. It’s also about the journey.
The two authors of Chicken Soup for the Soul, for instance, stayed focused on their goal. They went to thirty publishers and were turned down by each one.
Despite this, they didn’t lose their focus.
They did about twenty-five interviews each week for a year until someone finally gave them a chance.
Now, their books are household names, and some have even become part of a series with more than ten million copies sold!
(here is an article I wrote on Huffington Post about other authors who got rejected and almost quit writing)
Don’t Just Set Goals!
Make a plan!
You know where you want to go, but how are you supposed to get there if you don’t make a map?
Stop dreaming, start planning!
Antoine de Saint-Exupery couldn’t have said it better. A goal without a plan is just a wish. A quote so popular that even Tim Ferris mentions it in his book.
The point is, nearly all successful businesses plan for at least one year ahead.
In Japan, they even take the concept to the next level, and plan decades ahead, up to fifty years.
So, take a step back, make a plan, and look at where you’re going.
Learn To Love To Learn
Do you remember the humility you had in your first years of school?
You knew you didn’t know everything and turned to your educators and elders for advice.
Never lose that humility. Always remember that you don’t know everything. Nobody does!
Mentors have their own mentors, and those mentors have their own mentors as well!
Never stop learning and, more importantly, learn to stay open to the fact that there will always be more to learn.
Yeah, it’s a never-ending game! But it can be a fun one.
If you don’t have a mentor yet, just hire one…
Luckily, I’ve had great mentors all my life. But there were times when I had to hire mentors too, expert people who could advise me on certain aspects of my business.
Don’t let their fees scare you. Be it 100, 1,000 or 5,000 bucks an hour.
More often than not, you’ll get that money back.
And no, I don’t mean you’ll get it back in the form of a mere blah,
If you interact with these people in the right way and show them your value, they will even send clients your way. At least this has happened to me several times - thank you, Jane Friedman.
Practice Self Awareness!
Get on a constant path to self-discovery. Your five dominant tendencies are the windows to what your future holds.
Take the time to figure out what those tendencies are and write them down.
Putting everything on paper can highlight any patterns, such as griping too much, passing the blame off to other people or entities, using drugs, spending too much money on nonsense, or wallowing in generalized negativity of any kind.
A simple way to figure out what you need to work on and change about yourself to facilitate success.
Never Give Up
Even when you believe things are hopeless, never give up. I can’t even emphasize it enough.
Never. Never. Never give up.
Magic only happens when you focus on your goal and are ready to sacrifice anything to achieve it.
You must be willing to do whatever it takes to make that magic happen.
Absolute, unflinching, unrelenting perseverance is key.
Focus on the journey, and you’ll be at your desired destination in no time, or many, many years… whichever comes first!
I once heard Elon Musk say in an interview — “Being an entrepreneur is like eating glass and staring into the abyss.”
Visualize Your Goals
If you tend to respond better to visual stimuli, a whiteboard can be a great motivator.
Write down your goals, thoughts, ideas, and affirmations.
Map out your future goals, even as far as a year ahead, and update the plan with every goal achieved.
Reading the whiteboard every day can serve as a reminder of where you are and where you need to be.
Get rid of all distractions that can rob your time without giving anything in return and use that precious time to focus on your business instead.
Netflix, video games, funny cat videos on YouTube… you name it.
Remember, you must be willing to make sacrifices to achieve success.
Cut off those distractions, and you’ll be surprised how much time you have to focus on your business’ success.
Wondering if I do the same?
Well, know that in the past 6 years I reduced TV time with up to 90%. And I have no regrets.
Not only I got more time for my business, but I got more quality time with my family too.
There is no better time to get started than right now!
Even if it’s late at night and you’re ready for bed. Do something first.
If you don’t start right now, you may never have the drive to make it happen.
We don’t know how much time there is left on the clock.
All we know is that time doesn’t last forever. Time waits for no one.
Successful people understand this and use it as a motivational thought. A thought able to keep them going on a constant path to achievement.
I’ll do the dishes in the morning…
I’ll start to exercise on Monday…
I’ll start focusing on my business next month…
If you want to do something, do it now. Why later? Why Monday? Why next week or month? Why not right now?!
Here is an interesting article about procrastination you might like — http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/10/why-procrastinators-procrastinate.html
Don’t Reinvent The Wheel, Just Make It Better!
Use what is already out there!
I first discovered this concept in 2008.
I was on a beautiful small island near France, trying to figure out the best width for a website.
Then it hit me… why was I losing time with this?
Amazon, Apple, and other successful companies already spent millions of dollars trying to find the right answers to this question.
All I had to do was to use the right tools to find out that info and use it in my business.
And that’s what you need too. The right tools and experience to use what’s already out there.
Successful people rarely come up with brand new ideas. They take old ideas and make them better.
Even an item on the market can be improved.
Find an existing idea, discover its lacks and weaknesses, start small, and capitalize on it.
Just like Facebook! After all, MySpace was around before Facebook…