Updated: Jul 6
Do You Believe These Common Misconceptions of Success?
You already have many beliefs and notions about success, and while we all have our own definition of what success means, many of the common notions are wrong.
Having an inaccurate belief about success can lead to taking the wrong actions, for the wrong reasons or may prevent you from taking any action at all!
It’s not the things you don’t know that hurt you. It’s the things you believe are true that aren’t! If your ideas about success are faulty, success becomes much more elusive.
Here are some common misconceptions regarding success: (see if you believe any of these)
1. Successful people have a certain type of personality. Bill Gates is considered introverted, but not shy. Barack Obama was often described as very aloof. Of course, there are many successful extroverts as well. In it itself, personality type has no baring on your success-ability. Whatever personality type you have, you can rest assured that it’s more than enough to reach a high level
2. Money changes a person. Money has never changed anyone. There is a popular saying that money does not make the man, it reveals him. Money only provides the opportunity to act on natural impulses so if one natural impulse is noble, money will make her even nobler. If one's natural impulses are mean, manipulative, unkind, well then having money will make her an even bigger shit head :-). With money, all the things you daydream about buying and doing are finally possible. Money only shines a light on the truth of who you fundamentally are.
3. One must be intelligent to be successful. Actually, the opposite may be true. While there are many examples of brilliant people attaining high levels of success, there are even more examples of those with the ordinary intellect being just as successful. I'm sure you know plenty of marginally smart people who have reached a high level of success (and you probably wonder how they did that). Consistency, determination and taking action are far more important than intelligence when it comes to success.
4. It’s necessary to have an original idea. You don’t have to invent the next Facebook or Microsoft to achieve success. It’s possible to be successful by marginally improving upon the work and ideas of others. Take something that exists and make it even better, easier, more convenient. Just outworking the competition is often enough to guarantee success.
5. It takes a lot of time to become and stay successful. We all have the same 24 hours each day. The question is, “Are you spending your 24 hours as effectively as possible?” Focusing on the most relevant tasks every day decreases the amount of time you have to work. Most people avoid the most pertinent tasks because they aren’t enjoyable. They dillydally away time doing only what feels good to work on. Successful people are able to get themselves to do the things that most people are not willing to do. They work smarter but not necessarily harder.
6. Success is lonely. Do you imagine yourself sitting home alone because of becoming successful? Did you buy into the adage "It's lonely at the top"? Nothing could be further from the truth. It’s true there are fewer successful people than unsuccessful, however, you’ll have far more business and social opportunities because of your success. Success aligns you with networks of other successful people and your circle of influence will actually expand as you grow your success.
7. Luck is an important component of success. It’s true that many successful people have also been extremely lucky at times. However, the only way to be lucky is to give yourself numerous opportunities to be lucky. Take consistent action towards your overall goals including putting yourself in situations to meet people and expand your circle. Luck expands to the degree that you are in action, working, doing and connecting because it is through motion that luck can manifest for you. Luck is nice but hardly mandatory and it certainly is NOT a requirement for success. Vision, focus and drive are better luck makers.
8. The most successful people had an easy time. You’d be shocked by the adversity faced by many of the most successful people to walk the Earth. Many successful people started in the most disadvantageous situations and faced incredible obstacles. The difference is that most of us would have quit 100 times whereas the successful person kept moving forward. I guess you could say that, as you continue to stay in action, success becomes more and more certain. Success is the end result of consistent action towards a specific goal - eventually, you get there.
9. It’s important to have a lot of willpower to achieve success. Willpower is in short supply unless your life is at stake. Your REASON for wanting success will actually create the drive if the reason is strong enough. Willpower is useful during the early stages of developing new habits. After a habit is formed, willpower isn’t necessary. How much willpower do you need to brush your teeth each day? Develop the habits to stay in the game until you reach your success.
Here are some questions that may help you as you set your course for success:
1. Identify success - What is YOUR definition of success? what would you need to have, experience or be in order for you to be successful?
2. Scrutinize your definition - Look at your answer above; can you have all those things and still NOT be successful? Can you NOT have some of the above and STILL BE successful? If yes, then look at your definition and redefine it. Go deeper - what does success REALLY mean to you?
3. Identify your WHY? - what is the driver behind you wanting this success? WHY do you want/need to be successful? What will it ultimately GET you? It is never success that we strive for but rather the feeling that success will give you. What is that feeling for you?
4. Give it away - Tony Robbins states that 'Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure". Let us consider that ALL the things you want/need in order to be successful will inevitably lose their value after a short period of time of having acquired them. When you have ALL that you want, having it all will eventually lose its spark. The ONE condition required for lasting success and the fulfillment it can bring is sharing it with others. To succeed for a purpose greater than ourselves. When we use our success to contribute to the lives of others, to causes that matter most to us, to organizations we believe in - it sets the law reciprocity into motion where more success is created as you distribute its blessings onto others.
Is that then the real purpose for success?
Let me know your thoughts or leave a heart if this made you think.
P.S. Want support in creating a plan for your success? Partnership in creating the road map that will take you there? Accountability to ensure you take the steps necessary rather than give in to fear and excuses? Then working with a coach is exactly what you need. Let's chat about how working with me will expedite your path to your ultimate desires and goals.
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