Sometimes we can be our own worst enemy. We do things intentionally or subconsciously that impede rather than advance our success. The first step in eliminating these destructive behaviors is acknowledging them. Here are eight of the most egregious:
1. Confusing busy with productive
Let?s face it, you can find enough work activities to keep you busy day, night and weekend. The question is: Are they the right things? and?”Are you doing work, or do you look like you are doing work?”
It?s not the hours you put in or the number of items you?re working on simultaneously that make you successful. Focus on the items that have impact. Furthermore, you will have a better sense of satisfaction when your tasks (that matters) are checked and cleared off your list one by one. Knowing that you do not have a pile-up of postponed work at the end of the day or week will keep your spirits and confidence high.
2. Seeking perfection
“Strive for continuous improvement, instead of perfection.” – Kim Collins
In an ideal world, the pursuit of perfection would not only be noble, it would be rewarded. In the world we live in, it?s a recipe for frustration and a giant waste of time. According to psychotherapist?Mel Schwartz, ?The closest thing to perfection is is the ability to be fully present. Without any distracting thoughts measuring or grading ourselves, we?re free to really be in the moment. It?s in that moment that we?re truly alive. Yet, the perfectionist isn?t typically present as they?re either busy critiquing the past and replaying their every decision or worrying about their future decisions.?
In many cases, self-valuation is closely linked to the pursuit of success. A perfectionist with one too many self-inflicted failures hinders him or herself from walking confidently on the path to success.
3. Avoid Mistakes
Unless you?re a financial CRM (Certified Risk Manager), complete risk aversion is not a career success strategy. Of course, taking risks like you are a Hollywood stunt person isn?t going to be the most effective approach either. You must take calculated risks that will help you learn and grow. Without risk, you stagnate while those around you flourish and advance. Evaluate risks based on their ability to help you reach your goals, then pursue the ones that give you the best opportunity to move forward.
4. Letting fear impede progress
?A ship is safe in harbor, but that?s not what ships are for.??William G.T. Shedd
Fear can stop you in your tracks. It creates paralysis that causes stagnation. It manifests in your imagination where negative images can become larger than reality. Instead of allowing fear impede your success, use fear as a motivating factor to drive you. Try encouraging yourself with these words, “Do not fear trying, because the prospect of having missed an opportunity is way scarier.”
5. Distractions from your plan
Successful people have a plan. They set their goals. They chart a course. As much as they have their sights set on the strategic steps that they have drawn up, if they fail to keep to it, it is as good as failing, period. A phone call for help from your colleagues or a friend asking you to hang out for drinks later tonight, any form of distractions that coincide directly with your success plan may disrupt your course and hold you back from that success that you are pursuing.
At the end of each day, ask yourself what held you back and what progress you have made on your goals.
6. Fixing weaknesses
If you have a weakness such as the fear of darkness, which does not directly affect your pursuit of success, please by all means ignore this weakness. Of course at the end of the day, we all want to be better and stronger individuals and become champions of life in our own right. However, focusing too much time on weaknesses is the formula for mediocrity.? If you instead spent that time taking a relevant strength and maximizing it so you can be the best in that skill, it becomes easy for you to stand out and attract the attention of those who are making decisions about you.?That?s the most efficient way to put yourself on the path to success. Ditch mediocrity and focus on your superlatives.
7. Going it alone
This is one of the biggest challenges for some of us: The belief that we are omnipotent and self-sufficient. The most accomplished people in the world know differently.
They surround themselves with a community of specialists who have honed their skills in what they truly thrive in and they know when to strategically tap into this useful resource. As the saying goes, “No man is an island”…, so instead of aiming for success through the evaluation of your self-sufficiency, gauge your success on how well you can manage your resources.
8. Surrounding yourself with clones