Here's a fact: People don't just "become" successful—at anything. The success game isn't won by luck, random chance, or even talent. Sure, you need to possess a certain level of talent and a particular amount of intelligence, but those alone won't get you very far.
DRIVE, DISCIPLINE, FOCUS — and the ability to get that second wind when you feel like quitting-- will do way more for your overall success as a human being than any lucky breaks the universe may gift you.
This is not to say that you shouldn't celebrate your good luck or the talents you were born with. You should definitely do that! But it's important to recognize that your most valuable asset as a human being--and by extension, as an entrepreneur or business owner--isn't your ability to "get lucky" but rather your ability to create and control your own destiny. You see, success is nothing more than a collection of small, great decisions you make each and every day.
By this point, you've probably noticed that many successful leaders have similar habits. In fact, the majority of them share at least one characteristic: they are extremely consistent. They make the same small, great decisions each day, and by doing so they build their success one brick at a time.
What traits and habits do leaders have in common?
They focus on their goals and the BIG PICTURE - Is setting goals really that important? Well, if you don’t know where you are going, how do you expect to get there? Goals give you a sense of purpose and direction, which can help you overcome challenges and achieve more than you thought possible. They provide an opportunity for self-development by helping you learn how to effectively manage your time, energy, and resources so that they are aligned with the mission at hand.
Focusing on your goals and the BIG PICTURE – pays off in big dividends. How? Because people are more motivated when they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. And successful leaders aren't the only ones who focus on their goals—it's a practice that can be adopted by anyone who is serious about achieving success.
They are not afraid to make mistakes and to learn from them - in an era where everyone wants everything right away and is often preoccupied with praise and self-promotion, it is good to hear stories about people who do not allow themselves to be paralyzed by fear of failure but instead go for achieving success. Successful leaders are those who are able to admit when they commit a mistake and become better afterward. They understand that what is worse than failure is the inability to attempt something new. You have never failed if you did not give up.
They think win-win - They know that collaboration, cooperation, and compromise are the keys to getting things done. When they set out to accomplish something, they don't just consider how it will benefit them—they consider how it will benefit everyone involved.
They care about their people - and aren't afraid to show it either. That's why they work hard to build strong, functional, and caring teams where people feel appreciated and valued. Their people are their priority.
They are constantly improving as leaders - they know that improvement is a continuous process that never ends, even after you become a leader. Learning is a lifelong process that begins when we are born and continues until our last breath. The best leaders are always looking for ways to improve themselves and their team’s performance.
They are self-aware - authentic leadership starts from within. A true leader is self-aware and comfortable with who they are. They've learned the art of how to lead themselves first, so they can lead others effectively.
They plan and prioritize - although they are often regarded as two separate concepts, they are in fact two sides of the same coin. One without the other is like ordering a cupcake without the frosting. You've got the back end covered, but now you're missing that essential ingredient that makes it taste good.
Without planning, you cannot prioritize. Prioritizing is an art, one that requires some preparation. As a leader, you will discover that you are pulled in countless directions. It's important to know how to prioritize which areas of your job are the most important and know how to apply your energy toward those priorities. This will help you be more efficient and effective with your time management skills.
They show gratitude - gratitude is much more than just a concept or a feeling. It is an action that changes lives, both yours and your employees. It is a key habit of leaders who facilitate greatness in their organizations, gratitude builds teamwork and trust.
They know they don't have all the answers - They understand that they may not always be right and have all the answers, and are humble enough to ask for help when they need it.
As a leader, you help build and shape the culture of your organization; that's why it's so important to develop the right "habits" as a leader. The point of this post is not to tell you what it takes to be a successful leader, but rather to point out that these traits are consistent among successful leaders. You may ask yourself, ‘how do I become more intentional about my work?’ or ‘how do I make time for planning the day?’ While there isn't one simple answer, I would suggest starting by asking yourself questions like these and finding solutions in your life that work for you.
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