This article was last updated on October 16, 2016
7 Habits of Highly Successful People | The Secrets Successful People Know That We Don’t
They are early risers
The first (and probably most important) thing successful people do is wake up early.
Sorry night owls, but many successful people cite their early morning routine as vital to a successful day. It’s important to consistently get up early, and use the morning productively.
Studies show that early risers are not only more productive than night owls, but also happier and healthier. So set that alarm clock, get up with (or before) the sun, and have a great productive morning.
The Master Your Morning Journal was specifically built to help us night owls that have trouble waking up and starting our day with a well-intentioned routine finally add the habit.
They set goals
There is much more to this than having a vague plan to be successful sometime in the future. What exactly are you going to do? When are you going to do it? How will doing that help you take that next step to your goals?
Breaking down your goals into smaller, more manageable chunks will help keep you motivated and be able to visualize each step towards success.
The best time to get started with this is now. There are many ways you can set goals for the future, but a commonly recommended one is to write them down. Try going through this process to detail out how you are going to reach those goals you’ve had on your mind.
They strive for balance
Picture someone successful. What do you imagine their day to day life is like? You’re probably picturing someone lying in bed answering emails from the second they woke up, in the office for 14 hours, and working at home late into the night. Now, being willing to work hard is vital for success, but the most successful people know that you can’t work all the time – and you shouldn’t.
Successful people strive for balance.
Yes, they work hard, but they use their time in a smart and productive way. They know what is important to them outside of work, and they devote attention to those things regularly as well. Just ask Condoleezza Rice, who uses golf as an athletic outlet, and to network.
They keep their bodies healthy
Speaking of an athletic outlet, many successful people tout the benefits of cultivating your body as well as your mind. Exercise has many benefits. It can be a way for you to relax, a hobby, a way to meet new people, etc.
Barack Obama knows the benefits of exercise, and he changes it up frequently. He does strength and resistance training, running, and sports. He tries to exercise for 45 minutes a day, 6 days a week (clearly, he also knows the importance of a rest day). Of course, he also very publicly documented his struggles with quitting smoking – you can’t have a healthy body with unhealthy lungs.
They stay optimistic
The mind is a powerful thing, and if you’re not careful, you can sabotage yourself before you even begin. Persistence, optimism, and staying positive are all extremely important.
It can be tricky to stay optimistic when it feels like things aren’t going your way, you aren’t reaching your goals, or your whole life feels like it’s conspiring against you. Successful people know (or have learned) how to push through that feeling and keep moving forward. Exercise, of course, is a great for our minds as well as our bodies, and staying active can also boost your self-esteem.
They don’t put off the hard stuff
Mark Twain famously said, “Eat a live frog in the morning, and nothing worse will happen to you for the rest of the day.” Obviously, he wasn’t actually recommending eating a frog. But if a tough task is waiting for you, eat it first thing when you get in the office to get it over with.
Having a good morning routine is a crucial part of that. Some people struggle with making the time to eat breakfast, take care of themselves, or even just get themselves out of bed (snooze button, anyone?). That won’t help you reach your goals, though. There are easy ways to simplify your morning routine and make your morning work for you instead of dragging you down.
They write everything down
Have you ever had a great idea, but you’re in bed, about to go to sleep, and you promise to think about it in the morning? Or maybe you’re on the go and a fleeting thought seems promising?
Those thoughts and ideas always seem to slip past us, and we can never remember them when we actually have time to sit down and devote attention to them.
Successful people have gotten around this by always writing everything down – you never know how great that idea could have been! Take a second to write it down and then bring it out later in the day. Of course, keeping a small journal on you is a classic, and Richard Branson never goes anywhere without one. But in these days with technology at our disposal, all you really need to do is open the Notepad app on your iPhone.