Our Habits Determine Our Success

People by their very nature are creatures of habits. We all have heard this and fundamentally know it to be true. However, have you ever really truly taken the time to ponder this idea. At its core, this idea states that all the success we want can be attained if we adopt the proper habits.

Is life really this simple? Could something as basic as habits create all the outcomes we desire? In a word, 'yes'. Anything you want to attain is a matter of only determining what habitual activities are necessary for its attainment. Once that is completed, repetition is added by doing the tasks over and over until it becomes a habit. This is the ultimate model for success.

I will use Ernest Hemingway as an example. Here was a man who is noted as one of the most successful writers in the 20th century. His works have been read by millions worldwide. He had a writing style that was unique which accounted for a large portion of his success. However, nothing would be achieved unless he sat down and wrote.

When Hemingway was working on a book, he was in the habit of writing. His routine was to start about 8 am after he ate his breakfast and write until 2 in the afternoon. He did this everyday. There was not a thought as to what he was doing the next day or at what time. From 8-2 he wrote. During that time he was able to produce between 500-700 words (this was before computers). This daily habit enabled him to complete works which were between 90,000-150,000 words.

Take the Olympic athlete as an example. This is a person who works at his/her craft everyday, 7 days a week. He or she is in the habit of getting into the gym or pool and practicing. It is not something that is questioned or thought about. The habit of getting up and working out is ingrained. The odds are great that there is little thought required. Working out is a habit.

The flip side is all the poor habits we have which prevent us from reaching our goals. How many people habitually turn the television on when they get home from work. They prefer to 'lose' themselves in sitcoms. This might not be an effective option if one is seeking to advance his or her career.

Exercising follows the same pattern. One who flops on the sofa drinking a few beers will not attain advanced health. It is only by developing the habit of exercise and proper eating will one lose weight. Yet most fail because of their habits.

As you can see, the idea is to get the mind thinking as little as possible. Given an opportunity, the mind will create many reasons for not doing something productive. Developing a habit is what allows us to bypass this. We suddenly realize that we are working out without thinking about it. The conscious thought arises after we are already at the gym. This is where our success becomes automatic.

Most people are on autopilot to failure. They habitually do the things that create adverse results in their life. Without thinking, they spend hours in front of the television. Nutritionally empty foods that are high in fat are consumed without regard for the long term effects. Relationships are sabotaged because of a lack of emotional mastery which results in things being said that are later regretted. Laziness is allowed to creep into all aspects of life unnoticed. In short, our habits are our enemy.

Begin today by looking at some of your habits. What are the things that you do which hurt you? Make a list and begin to replace them with empowering activities. Focus on them for a few weeks and you will see how they become a habit. Only then will you know what it is like to be on autopilot towards success.
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