How to empower yourself professionally, personally

Success doesn’t happen by chance. It happens by choice.

If you’re eager to achieve success in your life and business, it’s important to know the strategies, mindsets and habits that pave the way to making your dream life a reality.

But this is easier said than done. The desire to achieve personal growth continues to grow every year, meaning the vast number of strategies, tips, tricks, techniques, formulas and methods for creating success rises too.

It’s easy to fall into a permanent state of being overwhelmed when following one method after another to achieve your goals. Some people even end up giving up because it gets to be too much. Why bother running the race when there’s so much chaos to deal with even before you begin?

The most effective way to tackle the ongoing threat of being overwhelmed is to set aside external success formulas and start building personal qualities that get you moving toward your goals, no matter how confusing and chaotic things get.

Here are the most powerful qualities you must cultivate to build and sustain success in your life and work.

1. Focus

We live in a world of constant distraction. Between social media notifications, email pings and message alerts, you get pulled in many different directions at every moment of the day. It makes it nearly impossible to concentrate for any period of time.

Successful people recognize this, which is why they do everything in their power to increase their capacity to focus. Focusing on one task at a time, making sure it’s done well and seeing it through to the end is a skill that will put you way ahead of everyone else.

Cultivate focus by cutting out anything and everything that takes you away from the task at hand. If you work with other people or in a noisy environment, get noise-cancelling headphones. If you find it impossible to stop yourself from checking your email, turn off the Wi-Fi in your home office or on your computer. There are even apps that allow you to block out wireless signals for a pre-determined length of time.

While these may seem like extreme measures, they’re well worth enforcing. When you have fewer distractions, you’ll find that continued focus isn’t hard to achieve.

2. Resilience

Where there’s good, there’s bad, and where there are supporters, there are detractors. Understand that wins cannot happen without losses, which is why you need to develop resilience.

Resilience is about bouncing back: Picking yourself up, dusting yourself off and carrying on when life brings you to your knees. Many believe it’s a quality that you either have or you don’t, but I say that’s not entirely true. Like all the other qualities I’ve mentioned here, resilience can be developed. Read books about it, hire a mindset coach and find programs or seminars that show you how to strengthen this quality in yourself.

When you’re resilient, nothing and no one can hold you back or keep you down. It’s a trait that pretty much guarantees success.

3. Discipline

Not a lot of people talk about discipline anymore, making it seem like more of an old-fashioned term. But it’s certainly not outdated. More than ever, discipline should play a big role in our fast-paced, frenetic 21st-century world.

Discipline is essentially your ability to control your impulses and emotions. You should call on discipline when you’re on a diet and a friend offers you an extra-large slice of birthday cake, and you should call on it when you want to watch your favorite series on Netflix but need to finish that project for work.

Discipline allows you to continue on the path toward a goal. It turns you into an unstoppable force as you head toward success.

4. Courage

When it comes to achieving success, courage is probably the most important quality of all. It’s the only one you can use to overcome fear.

It’s normal and natural to feel afraid as you pursue your goals and dreams. Maybe you’re experiencing fear of failure, fear of being ridiculed by others, fear of financial ruin, etc. But if you allow these fears to dictate what you should and shouldn’t do, you won’t even want to get out of bed in the morning.

Courage is the only antidote to these fears, so you should strengthen your ability to be brave. To build courage, find ways to face your fears. If you’re afraid of speaking in public, volunteer to give a toast at your friend’s wedding. Then do whatever it takes to prepare yourself so you’ll do a great job. If you’re afraid of the ocean, learn how to swim.

Increasing your capacity for courage is an invaluable exercise. The prize always goes to the person who’s brave enough to reach for it.

Never forget that you are the master of your destiny and the creator of your fate. Make a conscious effort to develop focus, resilience, discipline and courage every chance you get. These four qualities will determine your ability to achieve massive success no matter what your goals are. They’ll give you the power to create the kind of life you’ve always wanted.

(Ajit Nawalkha is the co-founder of Mindvalley and an angel investor. He is also the face of Zentrepreneur and Evercoach. BusinessCollective, launched in partnership with Citi, is a virtual mentorship program powered by North America’s most ambitious thought leaders, entrepreneurs, executives and small business owners.)

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