In this article, I’ve decided to answer the question that comes my way quite a bit. And that is “What IS the road to success?” And to be honest, there is not one set answer for everybody. There are a lot of variables going into the mix and each road will be different for each person. Now, there will be a number of people who have the same goals and possibly the same end result, but, they’ll arrive at their success differently because each one is an individual. An individual that was raised by different parents, went to different schools, had different friends, went to different churches, or didn’t go to church, had different jobs along the way, have different opinions, etc. So, each road to success is going to be different. But, there are some guardrails that are common for all on these roads.
What Is Success?
First of all you have to consider what your personal meaning of success is? Not everyone has the same idea of what success is for them. You may be wanting monetary success, or success at your work, relationship success or peace of mind success. Which of these areas are you looking to succeed? One or a couple? Maybe all of them? If so, that won’t be happening over a stretch of weeks. It will take some time of careful planning, sweat and tears for all the successes to be accomplished. However, there is one road to success, then there is a another road. One road is thinking of “number one”, having the “what’s in it for me” mindset. This isn’t the best way to achieve success and if you do, it will be a lonely success. Here’s the other road.
Model Yourself After Success
One of the fastest ways to reach success is to model yourself after someone who is successful. Whatever success you are after, there is sure to be others that have already succeeded in that area. Just copy what they have done to succeed. Why struggle through trial and error and make mistakes when there is already a marked pathway. If you’re wanting to open your own business, go work for someone who has already succeeded in that business. You double your benefits by learning what you need to know and getting paid for it at the same time. Once you’ve digested all you need to learn to make it in that business, take the money you’ve earned along the way and open your own business.
Another variation of modeling yourself after someone successful, is having a mentor. This is not the same as a coach. A coach is more task oriented whereas the mentor is more relationship oriented. The coach is short-term and performance driven. The mentor is long-term and development driven. Where the coach works on improving your performance of your work now, the mentor helps you develop not only for now but for the future. A mentor will help guide you and avoid the common pitfalls of failure.
One true fact is, you’ll become the average of the five people you spend the most time with. So, hang out with successful people! Spend time with optimistic people. You don’t have to be a jerk about it, but, if you’re hanging with friends that are pessimistic, lazy, and have no goals in life, start easing away from that person. Just become busy when they want to hang out. You need to start making friends and associate with those who are successful. It doesn’t matter what area of business. Success breeds success. Do it!
Believe it or not, one of the fastest ways to success is helping others achieve success; Whether in their personal or their professional life. If you focus on the needs of others and help them achieve their goals, eventually, you’re rewards will far outnumber your deeds. Remember peoples spouses names or the names of their children, things they like to do. Show a genuine interest and caring for the person. When someone knows you have genuine interest and want the best for them, they’ll go out of their way to help you acquire what you need. Be an inspiration to others. And the hardest thing of all, you need to put the need of others ahead of your own. You would think this is a contradiction of you being successful when your needs are being put on hold. I can’t give you statistics on this but I know from personal experience that it does work. Not instantly, but over time, in the long haul, it will get you everything you ever wanted and more.
Replace Bad Habits With Good
Zig Ziglar said the fastest way to success is to replace bad habits with good habits. Bad habits can be a man’s downfall. Everyone has their own and so do I. Sleeping in is a popular one. Change that to getting up early and you’d be amazed how much you can have accomplished by lunchtime, rather than just getting started by then. When I tried this, I was completing by lunch what usually took me until 6pm to accomplish. There are a lot of bad habits you could change. Changing can’t to can is a simple one, but appears to be hard for most. Rather than being content, change that to constant self-motivation. Don’t let up on yourself. Success won’t come knocking on your door while you’re lying on the couch watching TV. Another quote of Ziglar’s is, “Of course motivation is not permanent. But, then, neither is bathing. But it is something you should do on a regular basis.” Keep yourself motivated. Success is not a destination, it’s a journey. Keep yourself going forward on that journey.
Read, Then Read Some More
I cannot stress to you enough the importance of reading. You need to get your hands on every success oriented book available. Read about successful people. Read about self-motivation. Read about getting the right mindset to succeed. The object is to be constantly learning. You can never know too much and the more you feed yourself with success thoughts to go with the successful people you are associating with the better. There are hundreds of books out there for any success road you are on.