Steps to avoid in the road to success

by Cecilia Magnergård on January 12, 2014

clip_image002The author of the classic The power of positive thinking, the American motivational speaker Dr. Norman Vincent Peale once said “people become really quite remarkable when they start thinking that they can do things. When they believe in themselves they have the first secret to success”.

The quote is right at the point, but in order to reach true belief in yourself; there are certain behaviours that one need to stop doing that commonly decreases the possibility of full self-belief.

Avoid following the path of least resistance

Physics says that the path of least resistance is generally the one taken; it is in the human nature to take the easy way out. Within the evolutionary context, for example, the setting that we lived, evolved and adapted in forced us to conserve energy when we could. We liked shortcuts because they were more efficient and they used less energy and fewer resources.

Generally, I think our preference for the easy route is good in the sense that it may lead to shortcuts and improved efficiency, but be selective in your response to the evolutionary underpinnings. Try to choose the way that ends up with the greatest success, even though that road may be longer.

Avoid berating yourself for old mistakes

Young-man-resting-his-headEvery great success has a trail of failures behind it, and every failure builds experience and is in one sense a step closer to achieving success. If experiencing a mistake, keep in mind that it is still more productive than doing nothing.

Mistakes help us find the way the right way. We all have battles, doubts and mistakes from our past, but it is however, important to avoid our mistakes to define us, we all own the power to shape our days and future. Every battle, doubt and mistake that has ever happened in our lives prepares us for moments that are yet to come. Learn from your mistakes, but once that is done, let them go.

Embrace your challenges

Although it may be tempting to run away from undesirable and problematic situations, it is a defective strategy. Dealing with challenges is what ultimately shapes us into the person we become. Even though it may be hard; always face your challenges, learn from them and head on.

When an individual tries to run away from reality, reality typically follows them. This is not due to bad luck, rather bad attitude, expectations or outlook. Wherever you go, your mindset goes with you. Embrace your challenges and they will make you grow.

Avoid wrong focus

clip_image006I tend to repeat the importance of positive thinking, and this is because it cannot be emphasised enough. Stop focus on what you do not want to happen, rather start focusing on everything you want to happen.

In a working environment, pessimism and negativity causes individuals to loose their flexibility and their ability to be curious. Positive emotions generating positive thinking expands human’s attentive- and alertness; critical tools for anyone who attempts to solve a problem or is considering a business opportunity.

Therefore always keep on focus on what you want to happen instead of the other way around, it can mean the difference between stumbling and success.

Avoid complaining

Reflect back on negative periods in your past. In many of them you will see that eventually this period has led you into a better situation, state of mind, place or even person. You may not see and understand everything the moment it happens, and it may be tough. But stop complaining and feeling sorry for yourself, keep on smiling because you know that this period makes you a lot stronger then you were yesterday.

See the beauty of small moments

clip_image008Some of the best moments in your life will be small, nameless moments you spend smiling with a colleague celebrating a minor, yet important, step forward. Appreciate the little things in life; one day you may look back and realise that those little things actually were stepping stones on the way to greater achievements.

Success is essentially about a state of mind, a success-focused mindset. One success leads to another and the snowball effect goes to work. By celebrating smaller successes your starting to communicate the attitude of “I am successful” to your mind. Consequently, you will accelerate the process of accomplishing your goals as you are coming from a place of already being successful rather than trying to become successful.

Avoid worrying

A little worry is healthy; it keeps us thinking ahead and helps us prepare to work around unexpected misfortune. Persistent worry, however, will not strip tomorrow of its burdens, it will strip today of its joy. One worry leads to another, and before you know it you are tangled up in a web of worrying thoughts. Put your focus right and concentrate on doing your best in the present moment, it will help you stop worrying about the uncertain future.

Avoid interaction with erroneous people

Make sure to surround yourself with the right people for you. Colleagues, mentors, friends and family should help make you the best possible version of yourself. In order to reach that, make sure to interact with people that challenge you intellectually that have the possibility to look upon actions from a different angle than yourself. Every conversation you have, and every action you make do matter, and at the end of the day you are the sum of all your parts, actions and relationships.

Take risks

clip_image010Most great opportunities in life force us to grow beyond our comfort zone, which means that we will not feel totally comfortable at first. If one feels 100 % ready when a opportunity arises, that opportunity is most likely to small of a challenge.

Present research shows that the ability to take calculated risks is an essential human trait, crucial to our development as species and as individuals. Professor Michael Ungar claims that our risk-taking ancestors were the survivors as they were the daring ones who took chances to adapt to a changing environment. Today, the same principle applies. Give more attention to the areas that feels challenging and intriguing to you. Embrace the adventure of uncertainty! It will lead you right.

About Cecilia Magnergård :

Analyst with deep knowledge in Economic Strategy, Innovation Management and Business Developmed combined with a profound interest in complex problem solving and the global financial markets. She has an BSc in economics and a Master of Science with a major in Engineering and Management specialised in Economics of Innovation and Growth from the Royal Institute of Technology.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Lennart Cragéus January 12, 2014 at 15:47

Once again !
You have given important ,fundamental statements.
I want particulary emphasize your opinion;Every great success has a trail of failures behind it !!
So don´t be afraid -Take some risks !
Thank you

Waiting for new good advice
Lennart Cragéus

Wakefield August 26, 2014 at 00:05

Hola! I’ve been reading your weblog for a while
now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give
you a shout out from Kingwood Texas! Just wanted
to tell you keep up the fantastic job!

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