What do you imagine under the term “success”?
Is it wealth? Fame? Non-stop travel? Is it living life to the fullest, waking up in a good mood on most days, and feeling satisfied with how things are going?
And what if I told you the specifics don’t really matter?
Success is about accomplishment. It’s the joy you feel when you realize you’re living the life your younger self would only dare dream of, be it in the form of financial independence or a sense of inner peace.
And while our concrete ideas of what success looks like may differ, the good news is that the steps we take in order to get there are similar in nature.
Personal growth is universal yet specific, which means you can soak in all general advice and then transform it into something that works for you.
Here are the 7 things to start doing every day if you want to be more successful.
1) Prioritize your passion projects
Let me guess.
More often than not, you prioritize the most immediate and urgent tasks on your to-do list – your full-time job, your relationships, some light entertainment to escape all worries, sleep, food, and paying the bills.
It’s a lot, to say the least.
If some writer from the internet tells you to add building a whole business on top of that, you’re probably going to roll your eyes and wave your hand. “Give me a break! I’m busy enough as it is.”
I get it. You’re stuck in a routine that’s comfortable yet soul-draining, and it feels like throwing yet another thing into the mix will make it all fall apart.
But what if I told you that pushing your passions to the top of the list can actually give you the energy you need to feel great again? That doing more doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be more tired?
A few months ago, I decided to build my life around my passion projects, not the other way around. When I wake up, the first thing I do is write at least three hundred words in my novel. Then I go to the gym. And only then does my workday truly begin.
By getting my two priorities done first thing in the morning, I feel an immediate sense of accomplishment, which in turn motivates me to put more effort into everything else. I’m less tired and more passionate about life.
Sometimes, doing more of what you love is all you need to get out of the rut.
2) Work with your energy levels, not against them
You might have already read books like The 5 AM Club which tell you just how much you can get done if you turn into an early bird.
This advice can be useful – but only to a point.
Here’s why. Everyone’s energy levels differ. If you find it difficult to get up early but actually feel amazing once you get into the habit, early mornings might be the best time for you to work on your side hustles and passion projects.
But if you feel tired no matter how often you go to sleep at 9 PM and get up at 5 AM, mornings might simply not be your thing.
And that’s okay!
Figure out what works for you, and if it’s possible for you to do so, structure your day around your energy levels. Don’t push yourself into working really hard when you’re completely exhausted. Take a nap and try again later.
This way, you’ll be able to give your performance 100% and quicken your pace on your path to success.
3) Learn how to enter flow states
I’m a big fan of flow states because they make work feel like fun. No, scratch that – they make *you* feel like you don’t even exist because you kind of become the task itself.
If you want to be more successful, you’ve obviously got to work hard on your goals. And the best way to do that is to feel like you’re not working at all.
So, what’s a flow state? According to research, it’s a state of mind when you’re so engaged in a task that you experience almost no self-referential thinking. Time passes by super quickly and you get somewhat of a tunnel vision – all you can do is focus on the work in front of you.
And it feels amazing. It feels like there’s nothing else you’d rather do. You’re in your element, you’re thriving, you’re alive.
Personally, my favorite way to enter a flow state is to put my headphones on and play the same Lo-Fi playlist on repeat. I’ve been doing it for years, and so each time I put the music on, my brain knows it’s time to go into focus mode.
4) Incorporate positive affirmations into your routine
The day I started taking positive affirmations seriously was the day my life transformed. I’m not even joking.
Did you know that you can change the connections between the neural pathways in your brain based on what you think and experience? This phenomenon is called neuroplasticity, and it means that repeating the same phrases over and over again can quite literally transform your mindset.
Science backs this up – positive affirmations have been shown to play a vital role within the reward system in relation to future orientation. Every time you tell yourself you’re becoming more successful, you’re strengthening the neural pathways that support this thought, which may in turn promote motivation and action-driven behavior.
There are plenty of “I am” positive affirmations on YouTube or Spotify that you can listen to and truly connect with. You can also say or write down your own ones. As you make this into a regular practice, you’ll come to recognize what kinds of affirmations work best for you.
5) Write down at least one good thing that’s happened today
Want to know the number one way to become successful in life?
Be happy with what you already have.
And no, this doesn’t mean you should never strive for more. In fact, gratitude does the complete opposite – once you become aware of all the abundance in your life and feel thankful for it, you’re more likely to attract that same energy and thrive.
At the end of the day, success comes from within. You can have all the money in the world, but what good does it do if you can’t be truly happy?
And since gratitude has been linked to increased levels of well-being, it’s time to take stock of all the goodness in your life.
Every day, write one good thing that’s happened to you. There is always something, however small – petting a cute dog in the park, going on a nice date, putting on your favorite outfit, you name it.
The moment you begin noticing the good things in life is the moment your mind starts to seek them out and amplify them.
6) Read, read, read
George R. R. Martin famously said, “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.”
Humans are social creatures. They help each other out. They form communities. They pass on knowledge to others. Reading is one of the best ways to access all this.
As someone who’s been reading about one book per week since I was a child, I can attest that books are little portable treasure troves. Through books, I’ve learned about history, biology, travel, financial independence, personal growth, spirituality, and much more.
Read for half an hour every day. That’s all you need to do in order to learn how other people got to places you strive to reach yourself.
7) Interact with people who inspire you
Very few things beat the beauty of mutual support. Throughout the years, I’ve built friendships that are based purely on love and the desire to see each other flourish, and this has helped me move forward in life like nothing else.
The people you surround yourself with impact you more than you know. If your best friend is always envious of you, if they put you down, and if they doubt your potential…how can you ever feel confident enough to become your highest self?
Find friends who are happy in their own skin, who are working hard to achieve their own goals, and whose kindness and love endlessly inspire you.
Then keep each other accountable. Discuss your monthly and yearly goals. Plan work sessions. Lean on each other when you feel like giving up.
When you interact with friends like that every day, you’ll never feel like you’re alone. You’re in this together, for better or for worse.
Lost Your Sense of Purpose?
In this age of information overload and pressure to meet others’ expectations, many struggle to connect with their core purpose and values. It’s easy to lose your inner compass.
Jeanette Brown created this free values discovery PDF to help clarify your deepest motivations and beliefs. As an experienced life coach and self-improvement teacher, Jeanette guides people through major transitions by realigning them with their principles.
Her uniquely insightful values exercises will illuminate what inspires you, what you stand for, and how you aim to operate. This serves as a refreshing filter to tune out societal noise so you can make choices rooted in what matters most to you.
With your values clearly anchored, you’ll gain direction, motivation and the compass to navigate decisions from your best self – rather than fleeting emotion or outside influences.
Stop drifting without purpose. Rediscover what makes you come alive with Jeanette Brown’s values clarity guide.