As this year’s graduates prepare to celebrate their level of academic achievement there are many speeches being made and much advice being given, often focusing on how to achieve lasting success. Jim Rohn is quoted as saying, “Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.” To that end, here is an addition to the body of advice going out to this season’s grads: 8 Success Fundamentals that are valuable, whether you are just graduating, or already well on your way.
8 Success Fundamentals
1. Accept 100% Responsibility
Your future success is up to you – not your parents, not your teachers, not your siblings, not your boss. You are in control of your choices and actions, so choose wisely. Resist the temptation to rely on others for your success, or to blame circumstances or other people when things don’t work out the way you want, when you want. When you make a mistake, dust yourself off and look for the lesson you learned.
2. Commit to Finding Your Purpose and Passion
Focus on finding your purpose and passion, but accept that you may need to work at a variety of jobs that you are less than passionate about while you are on your way. Each will give you a different experience, and help form you in some way (even if it is only by helping you learn what you really don’t like to do!) T.D. Jakes said, “If you are not sure of your purpose, then find your passions and they will lead you to your purpose.”
3. Be Devoted to Continuous Learning
There is no such thing as lifetime guaranteed employment. Make this your mantra: Continuous Learning for Continuous Earning. The ongoing rapid change in the world means that a portion of your knowledge (like old technology) becomes obsolete every year. Make sure you are in a process of continuous renewal.
4. Grow Your Financial I.Q.
Many people live paycheck-to-paycheck as a result of a dependence on debt to finance “greeds” vs. “needs”. While working hard at your job, live within your means – and commit to expanding your means each year through revenue-generating investments. (Check out Rich Dad, Poor Dad’s Cash Flow Quadrant)
5. Be a Service-Minded Team Player
Nobody “makes” money – unless they are working for the mint. We earn money by being of service to others in some capacity. Figure out how you can add value to the lives of others, in a way that will earn you revenue.
6. Be Innovative in Setting and Achieving Goals
Learn to expand your comfort zone each year in terms of your goals. The skill of setting and achieving goals is one of the most important skills you can master for success over your lifetime. As you plan and succeed in achieving goals, you will also experience a growth in confidence and self-esteem.
7. Nurture Good Mental and Physical Health
Years ago, when I was speaking at a healthcare conference, I recall the speaker before me (a hospital CEO) stating that the two biggest preventable issues facing the healthcare industry were smoking-related disease and obesity. Be pro-active with your health. Make it a priority to prevent the problems you can, and prepare for the ones you can’t.
8. Think Long Term and Never Give Up
Where do you want to be in your life in ten or twenty years from now? Set your goals, write them down, and remain steadfast in achieving the short term goals that lead to your long term goals. Success through goal-focussed perseverance is as habit-forming as quitting and procrastinating. Adjust timetables when needed, but as Sir Winston Churchill said, never give up.
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