Regardless of what you define as successful (be it optimistic, happy, satisfied), I believe there are certain beliefs and practices that successful people live by.
This is my personal take on it. The 5 beliefs I’m sharing with you have worked for me, kept me motivated, inspired and effective. These are the beliefs that helped me create this blog and successfully launch an online course, The Power Of Persuasion, which just today hit 500 student!
So whatever success means to you, I believe that by following these 5 rules you will be able to achieve it.
Before we move on to discuss 5 beliefs that make a successful entrepreneur, let me point one crucial thing: you must do what you love.
You’ve heard that one before? And there’s a reason for it! It’s probably the most important rule for achieving success in life.
If you don’t love what you do, everything will seem like an obligation. If you do love what you do, everything will seem like fun. If you do what you don’t love, you’ll be sacrificing time to get things done. But if you do what you love, you will dedicate your time. When you do what you don’t love you continuously struggle to be motivated. When you do what you love, you will never suffer from the lack of motivation.
Doing what you love is the driving force behind achieving your goals and doing the best you can, Without it, you will end half way there.
“There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love; there’s only a scarcity of resolve to make it happen.”
~ Dr. Wayne Dyer
So I hope that whatever you do in your life, is what you truly enjoy doing. And assuming it is, let’s look at what I believe to be that main 5 beliefs of successful entrepreneurs.
1. Believe you can
Your attitude is one of the determinants of your success. As Henry Ford said: “Whether you believe you can or you can’t, you’re right”
If you start a new activity assuming from the beginning that you will not succeed – that’s exactly what’s going to happen. You create the results that you expect. For example, if you expect today to be a bad day, you will behave according to this belief and eventually cause the day to be indeed bad! But if you expect today to be great, you will be focusing on all the good, making today great in reality. This is called a self-fulling prophecy. It depends only on you which one you choose.
“When you advance confidently in the direction of your dreams and you endeavor to live the life that you have imagined, you will meet with a success that is unexpected in common hours.”
~ Henry David Thoreau
2. Surround yourself by the right people
When you take on a challenging endeavour, you will find yourself in difficult moments. You will start questioning if that was the right decision and if you are strong and smart enough to achieve it.
In these moments it’s crucial that you surround yourself by the people who believe in you. People who can really make a difference between you pursuing through difficulties with extra strength till you get what you want, or giving up.
Imagine you share your doubts with your friend, and they tell you: “Yeah, I think it’s too much for you. You should think of something else before you burn any more money and lose more of your time.” What do you think you will feel like? Like it’s too much for you!
But imagine that the same friend tells you: “Look, I’ve known you for long, and I know you can do it. I’ve seen you overcome bigger obstacles that this. I know you’ll figure it out.” Wouldn’t you feel motivated and inspirited to keep going?
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
It is normal that many people close to you will be the first ones to tell you that you will fail and that you should rather stick to what you have and do now. It is because whenever you go for something bigger, you’re leaving your comfort zone. And it is naturally scary for us to do so. So out of honest worry people will try to stop you. Plus, the world is full of negative people who easily criticise others but have no courage to try anything by themselves. Don’t associate with people like that. Don’t be one of those people.
Create your group of support, people you can turn to whenever you feel a doubt. People who can understand you. People who will kick you in your butt when you need it! :) To quote no other but Oprah Winfrey: “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.”
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Being right is one of the main drivers of human behaviour. Not only do we feel internal pressure to be correct, but we have also designed institutions that expect that from us. Being wrong, on the other hand, is punished.
There is one big problem with that approach. Nobody (and I do mean nobody) is capable of being always right. None of us knows everything, and none of us knows how to do everything. You might be an expert in the field and still there will be something that you will not know.
The easiest way is simply to ask. But it does seem to be extremely challenging for people to do so. By asking somebody for help I am admitting that I don’t know it (in other words: I am not right). So we fear it. But it is essential you fight that fear because it will always be stopping you from growing and achieving more.
I was once like that. I always liked to think of myself as independent, self-sufficient, all-knowing (I think that might be one of the common characteristic of MENSA members :) )
But when I decided to start PsychologyForMarketers.com I had no other choice but to ask for help. I had no idea how to register a domain, how to install a WordPress theme. But I stayed focus on my goal which helped me overcome my fear of asking for help. And right now I’m running a successful blog!
4. Just do it
We all know people who talk a lot, but they never actually walk the talk. They always say they would like to do something, that one day they’re gonna have their own business, make a lot of money, and how cool it would be – but then, there is no action to follow.
Rather than talking, just do it. And don’t worry that you don’t have it all figured out.
There is this great metaphor, which I’ve personally found very helpful: When you drive a car at night, you only see few meters in front of you. But as long as you know where you want to get, you will. You just trust that the road will take you there.
Your life is like this. You don’t have to know the whole road at the beginning of your journey. It will reveal itself to you while you go. But you have to start going.
Another advice: don’t spend time trying to make things perfect, because you will never be able to do it. There will always be something you can do better. Too often wanting things to be perfect becomes an excuse for not doing anything. Imagine a writer saying I have that great idea for a book, but I want it to be perfect. And they keep repeating it for years, and never get around to actually writing that book. An idea is nothing more than a though if not executed.
This is a painting hanging in Facebook’s office:
I recommend a great book on the topic, which will help you make your idea a reality in the minimum time and with minimum effort. This book has become #2 on New York Times’ best sellers list soon after the launch.
5. Don’t look for excuses
If you want to find a reason why you can’t do something – I can guarantee you one thing, you will. Of course there will be things for which you should not do something. And if you try really hard, you can find a whole list of them.
But how much farther towards your goal does it bring you? if anything, it pushes you farther away.
It’s a great habit that I strongly recommend you work on creating. Whenever you’re approached with a new opportunity, don’t look at why it might not work. Focus on why it just might work and make it happen.
Do you know the saying that only guilty people use excuses? If you ever find yourself looking for an excuse why not to do something, it’s probably because you’re too lazy or you fear to do it. So you look for excuses for your lack of action. Time and money are the most common excuses. If you ever notice you’re saying a NO to an idea because you don’t have time or money, let the red light light up as a warning: am I just excusing my laziness or fear?
These 5 beliefs are what I live by, and from my personal experience I can tell you that they work. Whatever it is you want to achieve, by implementing these 5 rules, you will be set for success.
Now back to you.
What are your beliefs and rule that you live by? What do you find to be characteristics of a successful entrepreneur? Share with others in the comments section below.
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