The Habits of Success

Everyone wants to be successful in life but some people make it look easy. How do they do it?

Getting started

Getting advice from people who are successful often begins with the need to use the time you have as efficiently and effectively as possible. Many of us have aspirations and ambitions but positive results are more likely when we deliberately choose how to spend the hours and minutes we have been gifted.

Prioritising how to use our allocated time doesn’t mean not having fun; it does, however, mean making conscious decisions about what to do and when to do it. Good time management can mean focussing on work, taking a holiday, relaxing with family, meeting friends or developing a better work-life balance; it also means having different priorities at different stages of life.

What success means at any particular moment should be influenced by a desire to stay healthy and fit and happy in the long-term. Making the best use of time sounds simple and, in theory, is simple. But it can be difficult in practice to use our time well on a consistent basis.

Mastering the art of spending time to best effect differentiates and rewards those who enjoy success from those who merely dream of it. Success is a function of choosing what to do moment-by-moment and day-by-day, as it adds up to a lifetime of focussed effort or blurred procrastination. The difference in results start in imperceptible ways but over the years it culminates in a lifetime’s work of energy and reward or avoidance and regret.

Making choices

When it comes to prioritising our use of time, choosing the easy option becomes a habit as decisions are delayed and best intentions lost to distractions that derail us. Choosing the right option becomes a habit too, as it reinforces our commitment to finish what we started. Whether we make conscious or unconscious decisions the habits of success and failure are formed in the confines of the routines we choose to follow.

The discipline of making the right decision and doing the right thing at any given moment requires focus and effort; otherwise diversions dominate. Failing at the start of forming a new habit is natural and helps us understand how to use the time we have to best effect, as initial intentions are often clouded by doubt and dithering. But once a promise is made and regularly practiced it becomes easier to repeat and is, as a result, more likely to come true. The secret is to prioritise the many things we need to do, make good choices and develop lasting habits to ensure they become normal and natural.

So, everyone wants to be successful but those who achieve success make choices and prioritise the use of time on a daily basis as a way to do what matters.