Adopting the daily habits of successful people will propel you to triumph in your own life.
Successful people seem to have it all — flourishing careers and thriving friendships, all while staying fit and maintaining a loving home and family life.
How do they do it?
By developing the mental, physical, and emotional practices that enable humans to thrive.
The good news is that you can learn the daily habits of successful people and invite achievement into your life.
In my work with clients, I’ve seen it happen.
1. Commit to personal growth
Successful people take personal growth seriously and endeavor to make positive adjustments, as well as growth, consistently over their lives.
It’s hard to know where to start your self-improvement. There are thousands of books and methodologies on this massive topic, targeting many areas — finding your purpose in life, getting fit, learning badass skills.
So, how do you know which area to target first with a new success habit?
By using a framework for personal growth. This enables you to develop a concrete and manageable path to improvement.
Multiple Brain Integration Techniques (mBIT), for example, looks at personal development through the lens of neuroscience. mBIT recommends harnessing the wisdom of the “Three Brains” (head, heart, and gut):
- The Head Brain: Creativity
- Cognitive perception, thinking, making meaning out of language and perceptions
- The Heart Brain: Compassion
- Emotional processing, understanding core values, how to relate to others
- The Gut Brain: Courage
- A sense of self, self-preservation, establishing boundaries, courage to take risks
2. Use all areas of your intelligence
Clearly, the “Three Brains” control very different areas of intelligence, but they each reveal important wisdom. It’s crucial to learn how to communicate these different functions and create a synergy between the “Three Brains.”
The habit of listening and learning from all areas of your intelligence creates innovation. This generative approach considers the interactions and messages from your gut, head, and heart.
Developing a habit of using all inputs available to you eliminates some common pitfalls of decision-making. You can avoid deciding based purely on logic, emotion, or fear — and open up creative solutions to any challenge that arises.
3. Develop a growth mindset
According to Stanford University researcher, Dr. Carol Dweck, successful people typically have a Growth Mindset (versus a Fixed Mindset):
- Fixed Mindset: With a fixed mindset, people believe that qualities are fixed and cannot change.
They focus on intelligence and talent rather than improving themselves. Those with a fixed mindset tend to think that talent leads to success, requiring little effort.
- Growth Mindset: People with a growth mindset believe that intelligence grows with experience, and, by working hard, they become smarter.
This drives them to develop a daily routine for success and to make a consistent effort toward goals, leading to long-term achievement.
You can develop this habit of thinking by simply changing your internal script. You must tell yourself that it’s possible to discover new ways to change your life, and begin to believe it. That way, you become willing to put in the effort.
4. Develop Conversational Intelligence®
In her book, Conversational Intelligence®, Judith Glaser explains how learning to communicate better brings people closer and fosters an environment of trust and creativity among teams.
Highly successful people consider open, assertive communication an important tool in personal development. They constantly upgrade their ability to communicate well with others and with themselves through internal dialogue (positive self-talk, honest introspection, tapping into personal needs).
Success doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Establish a daily practice of using Conversational Intelligence® to co-create solutions and success in all areas of your life.
5. Practice regular self-care
Self-care reduces the symptoms of stress and will help you stay motivated when working toward your goals.
Taking care of yourself involves different approaches, such as:
- Tending to physical health through exercise, nutrition, sleep, and rest
- Caring for mental health through nutrition, rest, exercise, positive self-talk, and support system (family, friends, coaches, therapists)
- Setting boundaries and learning when to say no
- Practicing gratitude and focusing on what you have rather than what you lack
6. Follow morning habits of successful people
What do Barack Obama, Tony Robbins, and Oprah Winfrey all have in common?
A morning routine.
Whether it means meditation, prayer, waking up early, or kickstarting the day with exercise, following morning habits of successful people will set your day up in the right direction from the start.
7. Develop an evening ritual
The same goes for winding down at the end of the day. Have an evening ritual for closing down shop.
For example, you can optimize sleep patterns by not eating two hours before bed and switching off devices. You may also consider meditation or reading to relax at the end of the day.
8. Get enough sleep
Sleep gives you a chance to recover, so you can wake up feeling refreshed, in a good mood, and ready to think clearly.
Aim for eight hours each night to develop the best habits for success.
Successful people protect their limited time and mental energy — establish a habit of switching off when you want to focus on deep work or take a mental break.
Give the brain a break from notifications and noises by unplugging from your devices. Instead of always reacting to distractions, take control of where you place your attention.
Experts recommend turning your TV and phone off (or turn on Do Not Disturb) 30 minutes before sleep and 30 minutes after waking. This will promote restful sleep, avoid distractions, and give your brain a chance to recuperate.
10. Exercise regularly
Regular physical activity almost invariably makes the list of daily habits of successful people.
Maintaining an exercise routine has many benefits. It helps maintain a consistent schedule, develops discipline, improves brain function, and builds confidence.
Not everyone needs to be an athlete, but if you don’t use it, you lose it. Those who stay active don’t lose their body functions as quickly, and have more energy to fuel a successful life.
11. Eat properly
Nutrition plays a critical role in ensuring your brain and body function at their best. You literally are what you eat.
That’s why your daily routine for success should include eating a well-balanced diet with nutritious foods so you perform at your best, physically, mentally, and emotionally.
12. Manage finances wisely
Highly successful people take responsibility for their finances. That means living within your means, paying off debt, creating a budget (and sticking to it), and saving for your future self and family.
13. Rest and recover
Sure, the best habits for success involve working hard and staying disciplined. But rest and recovery are equally important.
The world’s best athletes and entrepreneurs know that downtime plays a crucial part in staying motivated and avoiding burnout.
14. Enjoy the stillness
Life can feel like a roller coaster ride. Developing a stillness within yourself will keep you calm amid the chaos.
Put your feet in the grass and get grounded. Turn off the noise and tune into your own salt of the soul. Whether you meditate, go for a walk, or take a bath, give your mind a chance to find stillness and space from the ups and downs.
15. Practice reading habits of successful people
You can take a page out of Warren Buffet’s book and read the newspaper, or knock out 50 books a year like Bill Gates. Reading will teach you how to think and expand your mind to new ideas, crucial tools for success.
To learn from the reading habits of successful people, put aside a little time each day to get lost in a book.
16. Learn from the trailblazers before you
When observing the reading habits of successful people, you may notice that many turn to biographies of those who have come before them.
Learning about highly successful people, whether through biographies, interviews, or TedTalks will teach you about the daily habits of successful people you admire.
17. Regular meetings with a coach or mentor
Sometimes, we get stuck when we only use our own self-referenced vectors. Having a coach, mentor, or advisor on the sidelines provides valuable feedback and perspective.
Regularly consulting with a business coach, supportive mentor, or mastermind group can help you navigate the path to success. This practice ensures you stay motivated, keep the right perspective, and stick to your daily routine for success.
18. Carefully build an inner circle
Who we surround ourselves with has an enormous impact on our lives. Become aware of the people in your inner circle — and don’t fret if, over time, that circle of trust gets smaller.
Often the older we get, the more discerning we become when it comes to who we can trust and who has a good influence on us (or not).
Consider the following habits to build and maintain your inner circle:
- Make time for those who inspire and lift you up.
- Set healthy boundaries with negative people who bring you down.
- Seek out highly successful people who can challenge you to become your best self.
- Speak with leaders in your field at every opportunity — they can point you towards success.
19. Maintain strong relationships
Successful people understand that humans thrive on connection — we’re social animals. With strong connections and regular contact, we create a sense of well-being and strength.
Take careful inventory of who you spend time with and who you can trust to support you as you take on the best habits for success. Prioritize those relationships, and put in regular effort to keep them strong.
20. Stay focused
We need a means by which to manage our focus. Where our focus goes, so do our time, energy, and resources. Focus gives us clarity and sanity while distractions and unmanaged focus will wreck our ship.
I’ve created a course to help you become focused on the essentials — and manage your time to achieve your most important goals.
21. Practice feeling uncomfortable
Success often means taking risks that bring you outside of your comfort zone, which can feel uneasy or stressful. You will have to step outside of your cozy box and put yourself out there.
Taking small risks can lead to big achievements over time. Practice being uncomfortable, and pushing yourself a little each day to reach new heights.
22. Get creative!
The natural endowment of creativity plays a big part in finding success in all aspects of life. It helps with innovative business ideas, finding fulfilling career options, parenting, and relationships.
Exploring your creativity is a way to express yourself, tap into and share your identity, and maintain a sense of self. We also need creativity in our veins to navigate the ups and downs of life.
Make time for unscripted and free creative play in whatever way feels good to you, whether it’s painting, music, gardening, writing, crafting — the possibilities are limitless.
23. Stick to your core values
The tides of life can pull us in all directions. Call it a plumb line or a compass, we need something within to guide us when all the voices outside lead us astray from personal integrity.
Core values help us to live in alignment with our authentic self and guiding principles. Once you establish what’s important to you, make a habit of checking in to make sure you’re living in alignment.
If you need help discovering your core values, I’ve created a course to help you find your truth and live it: Be True: Discover your core values.
24. Try the “weird” things
You have your whole life to experiment and try new things. Living according to the expectations of others, you will only follow someone else’s recipe for happiness.
Successful people are often noticed for something unique about their way of being. Perhaps they followed an unexpected path, or embraced an idea everyone else thought was crazy at the time.
Pursue your own skills and approaches to build confidence. Even if other people find it weird, when you achieve your goals, you will find a success that you can truly call your own.
25. Take on new challenges
You won’t grow unless you try new things. Unless your definition of success is maintaining the status quo, you will have to move forward, learn, and grow throughout your life.
Challenge yourself at least once a year. Get out of the routine and get into a new vantage point. Stretch your soul while you’re stretching your experiences.
26. Find passion (outside of work)
If you feel passionate about your career — great!
If not, that doesn’t mean that your passion has to come from your career. A successful life is not all about business and work.
Much of work involves drudgery, even when you’re at the peak of your career. You can’t expect your business or your career to be 100% filled with joy and passion.
You can, however, find passion through hobbies, travel, family life, volunteering… whatever speaks to your heart. Create a habit of making time and investing in those pursuits to fuel your long-term happiness.
27. Let go of the identity crisis
In her Ted Talk, clinical psychologist Meg Jay says, “Forget about having an identity crisis and get some identity capital”.
In other words, don’t waste time thinking:
- I won’t qualify for a better job.
- I don’t know what direction to take.
- I’m not going anywhere in my life.
28. Build your identity capital
Instead of wondering what to do with your life, start doing things that add value and invest in your future self. You can start over at any age and work toward:
- Exploring new work or educational opportunities
- Acquiring new skills or improving existing ones
- Making connections that lead to new opportunities
29. Work on your strengths (not your weaknesses)
To find success, avoid the trap of endlessly working on your weaknesses. Gallup research continues to show the benefits of managing against your weaknesses by identifying and using your strengths.
Make a habit of outsourcing or finding workarounds when your weaknesses are holding you back. At the same time, focus your self-improvement efforts on building up your strengths.
30. Believe in yourself
Finally, remember this: Believing in yourself can provide the most powerful tool in driving your success.
This habit goes beyond wishful thinking — believing in yourself changes the way you see the world and yourself, propelling you toward new possibilities and knocking out the challenges in your way.
In short, believe you can, and you will!