“The successful person makes a habit of doing what the failing person doesn’t do.”
Make Up Your Mind Already
By Rich Schefren
Have you ever met an idiot who is more successful than you are? We all have, right? When I am coaching one of my small-business clients, they will frequently say something along the lines of: “I’m just as smart as so-and-so. So why am I working so much harder yet making so much less than him?”
What about you? Do you want to know why people with half your smarts are making 10 times more than you? If so, keep reading…
Today, the Internet provides an overwhelming amount of information. Never before have so many people been so well informed… and yet, so utterly confused.
Lots of entrepreneurs go around thinking that “access to information is what separates the winners from the losers” and that “the smartest person in the room should be the most successful.” Not true. If it were, then whoever bought the most “how-to” products or read the most books would be the richest – and we both know how ridiculous that is.
That’s not to say that getting the right information isn’t important. But it’s only a tool. When it comes to being successful in business, there are a few easily overlooked elements that are absolutely vital. They’re truly the deciding factors.
So, what are the crucial “winning” elements at the core of all successful entrepreneurs (even the “idiots”)?
1. Being Action-Oriented
Taking action is the real difference between the super-successful and the wannabes. Wannabes simply absorb information and, at their very best, react to it. And with such an overwhelming supply of information available on the Internet, most of them are simply numbed by it.
Here’s my advice: Stay focused! Take a deep breath and ask yourself, “What do I have to get done today?” Not tomorrow or next week or even next month. Today! And not “What do I have to learn to further my success?” but “What do I have to DO?!?” It’s easy to lose your focus on today when you are thinking about tomorrow. And it’s tempting to believe that the next pearl of wisdom you come across is going to make all the difference. But it won’t. You’ll never reach the level of success you crave without taking specific DAILY steps that get you there.
It’s pretty straightforward. To build a successful business, you have to train your brain to crystallize a future vision, break it into small details, and organize those details into daily tasks. After that, all you need is the courage to commit to the completion of those daily tasks – despite all the obstacles that get in your way.
Sounds easy enough, right? So what will sabotage your success? Mainly fear! Fear is your enemy. The little voice whispering “What if it doesn’t work? What if I’m wrong?” Look, some self-doubt is natural – but when it prevents you from achieving the success you deserve, it’s a problem. Which leads to my next point…
2. Rising Above Your Fears and Doubts
You have to get far enough above your doubts to keep working, or you’re doomed. What works for me is to forget about my fears and doubts by getting lost in the project at hand. It works for me, and it’ll work for you. Just throw yourself so deep into your work that your fears stay away until you’ve finished everything that needs to be done. Every successful business owner learns how to do this, sooner or later. What makes it easier is knowing that experience will always be your best teacher.
When it comes to business, you are going to make mistakes. We all do. Even the Intels, Microsofts, and Googles of the world mis-step from time to time. Building a successful company is complex, and there are always factors that lie beyond your control.
The trick is to learn from your mistakes. Just do your best to limit your risk. Focus every day, keep trying, learn what works, and don’t torture yourself when you take a wrong turn. Just notice it, learn from it, and change your approach.
And since we are talking about mistakes… do you know what’s at the root of most mistakes that you’ll make? I see it over and over again, playing out in so many new businesses. Most people would never guess what it is – even though practically everyone who struggles in business is guilty of it. It’s this…
For some strange reason, everyone wants to make things more complicated than they need to be. It’s as if everyone is fascinated by the overly complex. So, instead of keeping things simple, they burden themselves with too much to do and too little time to do any of it right. Which leads me to the next crucial element of entrepreneurial success…
3. Keeping Things As Simple As You Can to Avoid the “Stupidity Tax”
This is a big one. It’s so easily avoidable – but, for some reason, it’s one that almost everyone trying to make a success of an online business seems to walk right into.
When you pursue multiple directions in your business, you end up making very little progress. And it doesn’t matter if you are smarter and working harder than other people, because you are spread way too thin.
Isolate the fewest activities you can be successful with. Then knock them off one at a time. Don’t make the mistake of trying to do too much and, thus, marginalize your results. As Confucius said, “Man who chases two rabbits catches neither.”
If you follow my advice, you’ll get to take back quite a bit of the time you’re currently wasting. You’ll be free of wasting time trying to learn too much about too many marketing tactics at once. Plus, you’ll get back the time you’re wasting trying to execute strategies with a superficial level of knowledge. What you do with your newfound free time leads us to our fourth and final success component, which is…