Successful people: What Successful People Do That You Don’t
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Do you envy the success of others? Do you wonder how some people make everything look easy? Are you just as smart and talented as someone else, but see them being more successful than you? What are they doing that you aren’t?
Melanie Hutchinson’s book Successful People: What Successful People Do That You Don’t addresses this very question. She examines a myriad of successful individuals and identifies what they all have in common, and shares her findings with readers.
Successful People first addresses the issue of personal perspective, that different people view the same event in different ways, and that this is due to personal perception. Perception is the “filter” we experience things through mentally. One of the biggest determiners of our perception is whether we are optimists or pessimists.
Hutchinson reports that successful people are both positive people, and people who do not compare themselves to others. They focus on their own development, maintaining a cheerful attitude throughout their journey.
Successful People also delves into another habit of those who seem to have the Midas touch: visualization. Successful people visualize victory and internalize the vision as a target to aim for, rather than a passing daydream. Hutchinson includes some detailed but simple exercises to develop visualization skills.
Hutchinson has also discovered that successful people tend to trust themselves and their instincts. They can make decisions about which actions to take, even when stakes are high. They do not second-guess themselves or become paralyzed in their thinking. Successful People includes exercises to develop the skill of trusting our intuition.
Successful People also notes that on the occasion that the decision isn’t the right one, winners do not agonize over the mistake, but instead chalk the experience up to a lesson learned. They see mistakes as necessary parts of the success process.
Hutchinson also shows readers that successful individuals take responsibility for their actions. This allows them to think about ways to improve their performance. For example, if a successful student is late for school one day, he probably does not say to himself “The bus was late.” Instead, they tend to say to themselves, “I need to wake up a little earlier and get to the bus stop earlier.”
This pattern of thinking gives the power of control to the individual, allowing her to see where she can improve, rather than feeling victimized by the world around her. This is the attitude that supervisors and business partners like to see, rather than blame-shifting and whining.
Successful People also cautions us to not only cultivate these habits in ourselves, but to surround ourselves with others who operate this way as well. In this way, we are boosted and encouraged by our friends and associates, rather than discouraged.
We can cultivate these productive friendships by actively listening to those we consider successful, and see them as mentors, both formally and informally. We learn from their examples at school, work, and often in their personal lives as well, and see that they aren’t spending a lot of energy on drama and negativity in all areas of life.