While everyone’s path to success is different, there are basic habits that wildly successful people follow and live by. In fact, without them, they wouldn’t be where they are today.
Here are 7 commonalities among the world’s most successful people:
1. They thrive off failure
Hardships make you stronger and wiser. There is no such thing as overnight success and successful people understand that patience and perseverance work together. Risk-takers are more likely to be successful because they don’t limit themselves and are willing to put in the effort after they’ve failed.
Richard Branson is a good example of someone who has failed over the years. Remember Virgin Cola? Virgin Pulse and Virgin Digital? You either don’t know what they are or have heard about them as massive failures. Most people would view these shortcomings as setbacks and let it consume them, but instead, Branson learned from them and has leveraged these lessons to drive the successful companies he owns today such as Virgin Mobile.
Branson argues that you need to fail in order for success to take place saying, “We’ve never been 100% sure that any of the businesses we’ve started at Virgin were going to be successful. But over 45 years, we’ve always stood by our motto: ‘Screw it, let’s do it.’” He says you should not be embarrassed by your failures, but instead, learn from them and start again. “Making mistakes and experiencing setbacks is part of the DNA of every successful entrepreneur, and I am no exception.”
Failure is inevitable — whether it’s making mistakes or facing rejection. How you deal with it will either make you or break you.
SUCCESS TIP: Start viewing your failures as positives in your life that prepare you for success. Try something that you’ve been wanting to do for a while and don’t think about how it might fail.
2. They dislike comfort and stability
Some of the world’s most successful people are perpetually searching for opportunities that will help them grow. “The biggest risk I ever took was starting Wealthsimple,” says the CEO, Michael Katchen of Wealthsimple. “I had never worked in the financial services industry, had no license to manage money, and our prospective competitors, the banks, are the most competitive institutions in the world.”
If you’re looking for new ways to challenge yourself, consider pushing yourself by starting a challenge, setting deadlines, getting someone to hold you accountable, or starting a competition. Taking the easy way is something we’re programmed to do. Whether that’s cutting corners on our workouts or doing the bare minimum at work, we are setting ourselves up for mediocrity.
SUCCESS TIP: Set a goal to hike an advanced trail, learn to cook a difficult meal, or sign up for a new workout class.
3. They quit often (on things that aren’t working)
Successful people might not be quitters when it comes to pursuing their dreams, but they are quick to give up on an approach that they know isn’t working. Instead of doing the same thing over and over again, successful people learn a valuable lesson, figure out what didn’t work for them, and then they move on to a new plan.
In fact, “never give up,” is a very common phrase that we learn to live by when we experience trials and tribulations. People think giving up is not an option, as we often hear about successful people who persevere through obstacles to achieve greatness.
The truth is, successful people give up all the time. They cut ties with approaches, experiments, people, and projects that aren’t beneficial or fulfilling. The key is knowing when to give up and what to do afterward.
SUCCESS TIP: Cut out anything that consumes your energy without yielding any benefit.
4. They love to learn
This is something that sets successful people apart. Many people associate learning with school, like taking a boring math class, however, learning doesn’t end at school and truthfully, it becomes a lot more enjoyable. Find something you love, and pursue that. Learn everything about it and become a master. When you do this success will follow.
SUCCESS TIP: When you’re interested in something, it’s easier to learn because you retain information and are able to recall it and apply it later. Identify what you’re interested in and learning will be a lot easier.
5. They do what they love
Have you ever heard of someone who’s extremely successful but doesn’t like what they do?
Successful people simply don’t do what they hate. In fact, they cut it out and focus on working towards what they’re good at and where they can flourish. There’s a clear line between doing something challenging and something you truly dislike. Successful people try new things and experiment. If they don’t like one thing, they search for something they do like.
Founder and CEO Kibii, Michael Simonetta explains how he got into development and entrepreneurship, “I got into programming because my dad enrolled me in a course where I made my own Pac-Man game. My dad pushed me to try something new and if he didn’t teach me the value of trying new things, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Now, I’m always searching for opportunities where I can try my hand at something new because you never know where it will take you.”
SUCCESS TIP: Try picking up a new hobby that interests you. You never know where it will take you.
6. They schedule a recovery day
They take one day of the week to book time off for recovery. If you push a hockey player, for example, to play every night of the week, they’ll burn out by playoff time. Successful people recognize the importance of recovery, both mentally and physically.
A lot of successful people take time to do a workout or spend alone time with themselves to decompress. Ethan Song, Co-Founder and CEO of Frank And Oak shares his personal recovery practice, “to achieve better mental clarity, I try to go for a 30-minute walk in the park near my house every day. I find that taking that period to be outside by myself allows me to quiet my mind, organize my thoughts and find ways to approach different situations more objectively. I’m able to visualize the bigger picture associated with the big decisions I need to make professionally and personally, and ultimately, I’m better able to determine the correct course of action.”
Similarly, CEO of Daily Burn, Tricia Han shares, “even a little bit of exercise gives me extra energy and a more positive outlook. Plus, there’s something about a simple walk that gives your brain time to sort through and resolve problems.”
7. They only spend time with like-minded people
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz says it best, “When you’re surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is possible.”
SUCCESS TIP: Think about where you’re spending the majority of your time. Are you surrounding yourself with people that share the same values? Spend time where like-minded people hang out.
Balance is Everything
If you’re letting one part of your life consume you, you won’t be able to have the mental clarity and a fresh mindset to make personal and professional decisions. Put away the laptop and inject daily balance into your life such as trying a new hiking trail, meeting up for a meal with friends and family, or trying a new hotspot in the area. Each person’s path to success is unique and rooted in hard work, but what rings true for all is that without balance, you’ll crash and burn.