20 Common Traits and Behaviors of Highly Successful People

To end with, let's take a look at 20 of the most common traits and behaviors shared by the world's most successful people. You can then try to emulate these to try and encourage that correlation to work for you…

1 Optimism: We've already discussed why this is important and it's very self-evident when you speak to any of the world's biggest achievers. They all have a sense of optimism and happiness.

2 Risk Taking: Likewise, successful people appear to be risk taking. Higher risks have higher rewards and if you don't try, you don't know. There is a bell curve here though: if you're too risk taking then it can go the other way. And extreme risk taking is actually associate with psychopathy… Take risks but pick and choose your risks carefully.

3 Hardiness: Hardiness is the ability to take hits and bounce back. It's what gets you to keep trying even when things look bad and when people are telling you to give up. If you don't give up, then you haven't failed.

4 Creativity: Creativity is a crucial skill for coming up with new ideas and solutions to problems. Creativity tends to be highest when you're most relaxed, so make sure you are regularly taking time out to chill and you should increase your creative juices.

5 Resourcefulness: High achievers are resourceful meaning that they can make the most of the things they have available to them – like Tony Stark who builds the Iron Man suit while in a cave. The trick to resourcefulness is to overcome 'functional fixedness'. Stop thinking of things as tools and think of them as materials. You don't just have a hammer: you have a hammer, you have metal and you have wood. Those are a lot more resources.

6 Networking: Very few people genuinely succeed to a huge extent completely on their own. You need to be willing to put yourself out there and to form a team with people who can help you make your ambitions a reality.

7 Passion: Passion is crucial for success. If you want to be highly successful then you need to pick something you love doing so that you feel as though you're never really working – you're just doing what you were born to do. This will come across in everything you do. It will even make you gesticulate more which is the secret to appearing charismatic.

8 Gratitude: If you were really successful already… how would you know it? Gratitude means being thankful for what you have already and many successful people count their blessing each morning as a matter of habit to encourage this trait.

9 Exercise: Exercise boosts intelligence and it teaches you to stick at goals.

10 Meditation: Tim Ferris interviews some of the most successful people in the world on his podcast and something they almost all have in common is that they meditate.

11 Questioning: Steve Jobs said that the secret to success is to just keep asking 'why doesn't it work?'

12 Positive Affirmations: Positive affirmations are a tool you can use to bolster success. Like meditation this is a technique that many successful people say they use.

13 Sleep: Successful people recognize the importance of sleep. Don't ignore this at any cost.

14 Curiosity: That constant questioning comes from curiosity and likewise being curious is what will drive you to learn, to experiment and test. And that's how you make breakthroughs.

15 Drive: Successful people are driven and they are self-starters. That means their drive comes from inside and is not reliant on the approval of others. You won't succeed until you're willing to put in the hours, get up at the crack of dawn and weather the storm.

16 Integrity: Passion and integrity go hand in hand and if you want to be successful then you can't cut corners or deliver a shoddy product. People who cheat almost always get their comeuppance and if you're tempted to try and swindle people, it means you're not in the right line of work. You need integrity and you need professional pride to succeed.

17 Patience: Success doesn't come overnight and it's all too easy to get bored when you don't see the results you want right away. Patience really is a virtue.

18 Intelligence: While many people think of intelligence as something to talk about in hushed tones, there's no denying that intelligent people are the people most likely to succeed.

19 Confidence: We've gone over this tons, but the point is that if you don't believe in you: no one else is going to either.

20 Originality: Originality in ideas, temperament and everything else is one of the most valuable traits there are. To be truly successful you can either be the best, or the first. Guess which is easier? True originals stand out, they're remembered and they have no competition.

Conclusion - Be the Person You Want to Be
So there you have it! That's pretty much how you need to start changing the way you think if you want to be truly successful. It takes time, it takes work and it takes practice – but if you're able to put in the hours then you will find that the result is that you transform your brain into an incredibly powerful tool capable of helping you to get anything that you want.

To recap, what have we learned?
We've learned that your thought patterns really do make a huge difference to your success. This is no coincidence. To be successful you need to believe in your success, you need to take risks and you need to be willing to keep trying.

We've learned that writing plans and strategies in the right way can help you to minimize your risk and to succeed beyond your wildest dreams. If you're willing to bet on yourself and to take massive action you can do incredible things – and we've seen plenty of amazing examples of that.

What's more, we've also learned how to change our thinking. It's all well and good to say you 'need to think this way' but without being able to make those permanent changes this is all just theory. Using cognitive behavioral therapy, cognitive restructuring, mindfulness, thought challenges, positive affirmations, fear setting, priming and more we've learned that the brain can be hacked and rewired to more closely emulate the brains of the world's most successful people.
Finally, we've looked at the traits that the world's most successful people share in common.
Now you have the tools and the blueprint to change your thinking and to get that 'limitless brain' you need to make anything happen.


  •  Assess your goals
  • Create a plan
  • Restructure your thoughts
  • Execute

It's as easy as that but without those vital first steps where you change the way you think, you stand very little chance of success.
I hope that this advice gives you the tools you finally need to start making things happen, to be truly successful and to leave your mark on this world.

Good luck!

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