Author Les Brown has some advice for how to achieve success no matter the obstacles that might stand in your way.
1. “If you put yourself in a position where you have to stretch outside your comfort zone, then you are forced to expand your consciousness.”
If we stay in the same place our whole lives, if we never dare to venture off into the unknown, we will never grow. Our beliefs and perspectives will never change. We will stay the same and keep trying and failing to meet the same goals over and over again. Ease your way into a place that makes you uncomfortable and allow it to change you for the better.
2. “You must remain focused on your journey to greatness.”
Focusing on your goals is part of the discipline it takes to reach the level of success you have always dreamed of. The reason we are told to set small goals is that focusing only on the future, and where we want to eventually end up, does not work. We instead have to focus on the now, and the short-term, in order to produce results.
3. “Other people’s opinion of you does not have to become your reality.”
Being afraid of what other people will think of what you do and say and the way you act will stop you from achieving every single thing you want to achieve in your life. The sooner you learn that someone else’s opinion does not matter, the more fulfilling of a life you will live.
4. “In every day, there are 1,440 minutes. That means we have 1,440 opportunities to make a positive impact.”
Live the kind of life and engage in the kind of routine that allows you to make small positive changes in the world in everything you do. There is no such thing as wasted time. You never know when a small act of kindness today will lead to something much bigger and brighter down the road.
5. “Forgive yourself for your faults and your mistakes and move on.”
Learning how to forgive yourself and move on from your mistakes is the ultimate key to success. We all make mistakes. Successful people, however, learn from those mistakes. They forgive themselves for being imperfect because they understand perfection is not an achievable goal. You can only achieve what you want to achieve once you come to that same realization, stand back up and keep moving forward.
6. “Help others achieve their dreams and you will achieve yours.”
Life is not about climbing over other people to get to where you think you are supposed to be; that is not success. Success is helping other people along your way and touching lives in a positive way wherever you go.
7. “We must look for ways to be an active force in our own lives. We must take charge of our own destinies, design a life of substance and truly begin to live our dreams.”
Is there a kind of life you have always wished you could live? What is stopping you? You are the only one in charge of your future. If there are barriers, decide what you need to do to eliminate or work around them. Give yourself a goal and a timeline and dare to create the life you thought could only exist in your dreams.
8. “A lot of people do not muster the courage to live their dreams because they are afraid to die.”
You cannot worry about the future. You can plan for it and hope for it, but you cannot sit around and wait for it. You cannot let fear – of failure, of regret, of death – stand in your way. Wouldn’t you rather die knowing you had truly lived?
9. “You cannot expect to achieve new goals or move beyond your present circumstances unless you change.”
“I wish things were different.” Then change them! You are in control of your life. You are in control of your behavior and your thoughts and your actions. If you want something to change, you must not only decide to do it, but also you must make it happen.
10. “Wanting something is not enough. You must hunger for it. Your motivation must be absolutely compelling in order to overcome the obstacles that will invariably come your way.”
If you want something badly enough, you will be able to find a way to go after it. You will use that motivation buried deep inside you to launch yourself over all obstacles and turn your dream into a reality. You can want all you want – but you must also actively overcome barriers.
11. “Review your goals twice every day in order to be focused on achieving them.”
Constantly remind yourself of what you are trying to accomplish. That is one of the best ways to help keep you focused on where you are headed.
12. “If you set goals and go after them with all the determination you can master, your gifts will take you places that amaze you.”
Some cannot reach their goals because they have trouble motivating themselves to do the work required to achieve those goals. Figure out how to motivate yourself to do what you need to do in the short term in order to get to places you never imagined you could go in the long term.
13. “You need to make a commitment, and once you make it, then life will give you some answers.”
Commit to something. Decide, “Yes, I am going to do this,” and never look back. You cannot spend your whole life wondering why things are the way they are. Set a goal, go after it, and you will figure it out in time.
14. “We have to live life with a sense of urgency so not a minute is wasted.”
Successful people do not say, “I’ll get started tomorrow.” They get started immediately, even if it is just writing down ideas on a piece of paper. They do not wait. They start planning and they do not allow time for second guessing their ambitions.
Success does not happen to you: you make it happen for yourself.