5 Critical Characteristics of High Achievers

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to have the gift of turning everything they touch into gold? They lead the best teams, they achieve exceptional results and get noticed and promoted more often. And just to rub salt into the wound … they seem have everything sorted in their life outside of work too.

Meanwhile you struggle along, getting frustrated by the things you have tried and fail. Perhaps you get things started but you fail to get traction or real momentum, leaving you wondering what is it that you need to do differently.

It turns out that high performers think and operate differently. And the good news is that by adopting some of the key characteristics of those high achieving superstars we can more consistently achieve more of what we want from life and from our work.

5 Critical Characteristics of high achievers

1.  They believe it is possible. There is a correlation between what we believe is possible and what our results are. If we think we cant, we wont. If we think we can then there is a fare chance we will. It is like our belief becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

Possibility thinking gives us the physical and mental energy that drives creativity, inspires action and defeats self doubt. We notice the opportunities that arise and we are more likely to go after them with a sense of confidence and self worth.

2.  They resist the fear of failure. High achievers know that they are likely to encounter failures along the way. Both Oprah and Arianna Huffington have spoken about their failures as being learning lessons on their way to success. They do not fear failure or internalize it; they don’t identify with it or say, “I am a failure.” Instead they study it, analyse it and take what they can to learn from it.

They also don’t let the fear of failure hold them back from taking action. Just like the rest of us they experience fear, the difference is that they take action in spite of it.

3.  They consciously create their future. They don’t leave their life, their career, their future success and happiness up to chance.

Is your career and life by design or default?

High achievers feel empowered to create and shape their outcomes. They regularly carve out time in their year to get specific about what they want, and then to go about achieve those things.

The more specific you become in what you want from your career and your life, the more chance you have of achieving it.

4.  They tap into their motivation. Unless you know why your want something and feel connected to what is most important to you then it is all too easy to be thrown off course. There is going to come a point in the pursuit of any big goal when you are going to want to quit and walk away.

We have all done it. We set out to get fit, go after a new work goal, achieve a financial target and we start with a flurry of optimism and hope only to find that after a few weeks or months that it all gets a bit hard and the pull of our old comfortable ways stop us in our tracks.

The key to success is consistency and persistence and tapping into your inner motivation. We must remain connected to why this endeavour is important and what is at stake. This will give you the push you need to keep going when things get tough.

5.  They reject the urge to procrastinate. The biggest hurdle of achievement is procrastination. It is easy to put things off. It is too easy to push the pause button and not start. But starting is the key.

You will never achieve anything of significance if you succumb to the urge to stay safe and to wait until you have rock solid certainty or for courage to show up.  And don’t worry about  knowing every step towards your magnificent outcome before you get started.

High achievers know the secrete to success is to start.

Chunk the big idea down into small bit size pieces and start with small easy steps to gain momentum. But the most important step is to start.

So as we race towards the end of the year, think about whether your work and life is as you want it to be…. Or not.

Carve out some time to reflect on which of these characteristics will make the biggest impact if you were to take them on as your own.   Create some specific goals and take the first action to get traction and momentum towards some new outcomes.


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