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11 things successful people always do (but never talk about)

It’s easy to see how successful people may be cut from a different cloth.

Beneath their skills and background are what truly sets them apart from regular people — their habits.

At one point or another, they decided to commit to these habits, which have made all the difference in their professional and personal lives.

Habits are something that anyone can pick up — even you. What’s important is that you have a dream for success and you take action towards it every day.

With that said, here are 11 habits that successful people share that you can implement in your daily life to find success for yourself.

1. Reading For Knowledge

It was former United States president Harry Truman that said that “Not all readers become leaders, but all leaders must be readers.”

A common trait shared among the world’s most successful and powerful people is that they read — a lot.

Warren Buffett has said that he spends five to six hours a day reading.

Bill Gates, aside from having a net worth of way over $100 billion, has an entire section on his personal site dedicated to the books he’s reviewed — and he updates it often.

The kind of reading that successful people do is different.

They don’t read just for fun and entertainment — they read to learn.

They see books as important resources of information that they can use in their day-to-day lives.

2. Sleeping Enough

In a culture of nonstop innovation, there’s one thing that successful people take advantage of more than anyone else — they sleep.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, whose net worth is almost $200 billion, has said that he sleeps for 8 hours every night to help him think better and have more energy.

The importance of sleep couldn’t be overstated.

A study has shown that getting the appropriate amount of sleep that your body needs helps you not only feel more awake but also helps you think clearly and improve your mood.

Not only do they sleep enough but they also tend to be early risers.

Hollywood actor Mark Wahlberg has said that he used to wake up as early as 2:30 AM to get his workout in and start his day.

3. Avoiding Distractions

American poet Maya Angelou had a routine that she followed in order to get as much focused work done as she can.

After waking up at 5:30 AM and having her morning coffee, she locks herself in a small hotel room from 7 AM onwards to work.

The only things she would bring were a bible, a dictionary, a deck of cards, and a bottle of sherry.

In those hours spent alone, she wrote with all her energy.

She was serious about her work, which was why she did all she could to avoid any distractions.

Being shut out from the world and able to focus helped her maintain a level of productivity that would make her one of the most iconic authors in American literature.

4. Referring Back To Their Goals

It can be easy to lose focus on the bigger picture when you’re getting caught up in the stresses of everyday work.

That’s why successful people learn they need to regularly step back and assess the quality of their progress so far and how it aligns with their larger goals.

Productivity guru David Allen has sworn by the effectiveness of what he calls the “weekly review” in order to stay up to date on your personal commitments like your work, your family life, your personal life — any area of your life where you have responsibility for.

5. Staying Organized

Successful people are usually very busy people.

Keeping up with all the project deadlines and managerial responsibilities can become its own challenge — one that they would rather like to overcome as efficiently as possible.

In an interview, co-founder of Twitter and Square Jack Dorsey has said that the way he’s able to maintain the energy for juggling two full-time jobs is by having a separate focus each day — Tuesday for products, Wednesday for marketing and communication, for example; keeping his Sundays sacred for reflection and strategizing for the week ahead.

6. Engaging In Physical Activities

Running a business and hopping from meeting to meeting can be mentally taxing, which is why successful people are no stranger to taking care of their minds by engaging in physical activities.

A study has shown that regular exercise can increase mental activity and improve memory.

Founder of Virgin Airlines Richard Branson has said that he works out for 60 minutes daily — from playing tennis to weightlifting to even kitesurfing.

He says that if he isn’t able to get his body up and moving, he isn’t able to perform at his best level.

So he creates the time in his busy schedule to focus on his body so that he can continue with his work successfully.

7. Creating More Sources Of Income

Author Tom Corley spent 5 years interviewing successful people to learn about their habits.

He found that the majority of the successful people had multiple income streams prior to reaching their first million dollars.

Relying on a single source of income isn’t enough to reach your financial goals, which is why successful people find different ways to earn money.

They go into investing, from stocks to start-ups; they open side-businesses and pursue side hustles.

This underscores the necessity for financial literacy in your path to personal and professional growth and success.

8. Taking Action

Successful people are successful because they’ve chosen to act; to do something about their dreams.

They aren’t the type to sit around and daydream. When they want something, they’re going to go for it — even taking action through failures.

Author Angela Duckworth has said that successful people have what is called a “growth mindset”.

Successful people understand that they are not limited to the skills and knowledge that they’re born with. They can change. They can improve their performance, despite failures and mistakes.

Each opportunity is taken as a chance to learn more and become a better version of themselves, moving forward.

9. Building A Circle Of Like-Minded People

We are naturally social beings.

When we surround ourselves with a group of people that are as driven like us, we can be motivated to keep pursuing our goals.

It’s also an opportunity to learn valuable lessons from each other.

Prior to founding one of the world’s leading aerospace manufacturers SpaceX, Elon Musk had no idea how to work rockets — he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in economics and a Bachelor of Arts in physics.

His interest in taking advantage of space couldn’t be stopped, however.

This drive led him to cold calling NASA scientists to ask them for help in understanding what he needed to do to get people on Mars.

And so he set off building a circle of people that he could learn from, which eventually helped him become something of a rocket scientist himself.

10. Staying Positive

Successful people know about taking risks and failures.

While these can be traumatic experiences for some, successful people have developed a resilient mind through positive thinking.

There have been several studies done regarding the beneficial effects of positive thinking.

In one study, participants suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder were asked to visualize positive images that were unrelated to their worries.

What they found was that it actually improved their mood and lessened their worry.

In an interview with Oprah, actor Jim Carrey has said that he’s experienced this healing and motivating power of visualization and how it led to his success.

11. Giving Back To Their Community

It was Anne Frank that said, “No one has ever become poor by giving.”

Truly successful people have understood that they’ve been fortunate in their life.

Their communities have given them all the support that they need to be successful that they feel the need to repay it somehow.

That’s why it’s a common sight to see actors and musicians do charity events to help raise awareness and support for causes they believe in.

Successful people often create foundations, such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation or the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

Giving back to their communities and supporting causes are ways that they show gratitude and pay it forward.

Learning How To Be A Success

There are all kinds of successful people in the world; ones who write award-winning literary works to entrepreneurs hungry and hunting for their next venture.

And although they may share similar habits, their lifestyles may look completely different.

There isn’t a single image of a successful person.

While you may adopt these habits, it’s always important to remember why you’re doing so; knowing at what point you decide that you have finally made it.

Besides wondering how you too can be successful, you must also answer the question:

What does success look like to you?

Success doesn’t always mean money, or an amazing career, or a giant house. Success is defined by whatever you feel it means to you.

Don’t judge your life and accomplishments on the standards of society; judge them by your own standards.

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Written by Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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