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Overnight success is very rare. Success takes a long time.
In my Rich Habits research, I learned there were three traits that were common among all successful people.
Trait #1 Laser Focus
Laser Focus is the ability to concentrate for long hours at a time. It is also the ability to quickly pivot and shift to other pressing matters, deploying that same Laser Focus to solve problems or to deal with obstacles/unexpected events. Gaining Laser Focus requires many years of Practice. It is not something that you can manifest at will. Like a muscle, it must be developed over a long period of time. Because Laser Focus saps the body and brain of energy, a healthy lifestyle for every Successful Leader becomes a priority. To this end, Successful Leaders develop the Rich Habit of daily exercise, which must include some form of aerobic exercise.
The pursuit of dreams and the goals behind those dreams, requires many years of Laser Focus. Those who develop this Laser Focus muscle eventually succeed.
Trait #2 Persistence
What is Persistence?
- Persistence means never quitting on your dreams and goals. Because Successful people have a very clear vision of their destination, they will pursue their dreams and goals relentlessly and will not allow problems, obstacles or adversity to stop them from moving forward.
- Persistence means taking action every day on the goals behind your dreams, whether you feel like it or not.
- Persistence means never giving in to your doubts. Some days go your way, but most of the days in pursuit of a dream, will not go your way. When things don’t go your way, those are the days your mind is filled with doubt. Successful people persist even when life punches them in the gut.
- Persistence means you stay on task despite making costly mistakes. Successful people view mistakes as learning experiences and nothing else.
- Persistence means you pick yourself up after suffering devastating failure. Successful people believe you only fail when you quit.
- Persistence means not letting rejection or being ignored stop you from moving forward. When you are pursuing a dream, you will be faced with rejection and you will be ignored. It’s part of the process. Successful people do not take defeat/setbacks personally. They take emotion out the pursuit of their dreams and goals. When they get rejected or ignored they simply say “NEXT” and move on.
- Persistence means not allowing distractions to shift your focus. It’s easy to let distractions get in the way. Successful people push aside distractions and focus on what’s most important. They have a big picture view, thanks to the clear vision of their destination, and this clear vision acts like a force field, deflecting all distractions from their path.
- Persistence means not letting fear stop you in your tracks. Fear is the main reason most unsuccessful people quit on a dream. Successful people make a habit of being fearless.
Lady Luck visits those who relentlessly pursue their dreams and simply refuse to quit, no matter the adversity. Luck, therefore, is a byproduct of being persistent.
Trait #3 Patience
It takes many years to realize your dreams and achieve the goals behind those dreams. When you do, success is your reward. Because success takes many years, you have to forge the Rich Habit of being Patient. Patient people make sound, logical decisions. Impatient people make hasty decisions, which are almost always bad decisions that wind up costing you time and money.
Success is a long game. Patience keeps you in the game.
Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life”, Effort-Less Wealth, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals.”