Habits are more than just the things that you do; they’re who you are and how you feel. Your habits define the amount of success you can achieve and how you’re destined to react to any given situation. And there are four destructive mental habits that successful people don’t have. Each one will erode your mental and emotional resources, drive you to make bad decisions, deplete your energy, and waste time that you’ll never get back.
Successful people know how much energy they have before decision fatigue sets in, and they only use their energy to move them toward their goals. On the other hand, most unsuccessful people waste more energy than they purposefully expend. Start treating your mental energy like a scarce resource, and say no to distractions and extraneous tasks. You’ll be amazed at how much more focused you’ll be on your goals when you stop giving away your mental energy.
Successful people are faced with problems and decisions that would make others curl into a ball in the corner and cry for their mommies. But they face these issues with clarity and calm, and avert crises on a daily basis. They’re able to accomplish this by recognizing the futility of worrying. Worry isn’t a solution, it’s just a bad habit that many people can just as easily decide not to make. Most people worry because they are choosing to focus on variables outside of their control. Successful people face the facts of the situation and don’t waste time thinking about unknown factors, what-ifs, or conjecture. By staying focused on finding a solution, on the facts at hand, and what they have control over, they avoid draining their valuable resources on something as pointless as worrying.
A little self-doubt can be a healthy thing. But when doubt is your dominant emotional state, then you cripple yourself before you even start. People who habitually doubt themselves fear failure more than they fear standing still. Successful people have a much greater fear of standing still than they do of failure because they understand that failure doesn’t stop them from achieving their goals — inaction does. They don’t have time to doubt themselves because they’re too busy taking action toward their goals. If their action fails, then they try another but they always push forward.
Because successful people accept failure as a natural part of their journey to success, they don’t waste time blaming others when inevitable setbacks happen. Instead, they try to figure out what happened, what they can learn from that failure, and then plan their next move.
Trying to cast blame whenever things don’t go according to plan is a corrosive exercise that sows seeds of distrust, disloyalty, and fear among your team. That will only lead to more dysfunction. However, this doesn’t mean that successful people don’t hold those around them accountable. If mistakes were made, those who committed them know that repercussions will be fast, final, and fair.
Successful people are an elite group of action takers who don’t allow knee-jerk emotional reactions to compromise their vision or their goals. This does not mean they’re emotionless, disinterested in their employees, or narcissistic; they’re simply able to avoid common mental pitfalls that keep so many others from attaining their goals. By not allowing these four pitfalls to hinder your progress, you’ll be well on your way to greater success in your industry, and you’ll benefit from a new-found confidence and determination.