One of the major differences between people who are successful and those who struggle to create the success they want is that the successful never have to be told what to do, how to do it, or when to do it. They are self-starters who manage themselves and direct their work.
If you study successful people, one thing that you’ll notice is that they’re self-directed. No one has to ask them to set a goal or to decide what outcomes they need to accomplish. Not only do they set their own goals, but the goals they set for themselves are far greater than the goals someone else would give them, were another person directing their work. They also do not need to be told the outcomes they need to generate to reach those goals. They do this for themselves.
It is the rarest of occasions when a self-directed, successful person needs someone to tell them what they need to do. Successful people do not have learned helplessness, which means they are willing and able to figure things out for themselves. If they need help, or if they need to improve what they’re doing, they will find someone who is already producing the result they want, study that person, and ask that person for the coaching they need to be able to improve what they’re doing. Because they are self-directed, they find answers for themselves.
If you look at any successful person, you will see that they are meticulous about their calendar. They track all of their commitments, and when something is due, they meet that deadline. They do not need to be told, reminded, or motivated by someone else to do the work. Their intrinsic motivation compels them to do what is necessary and propels them forward from one completed project to the next, without interruption, and without fail.
People that struggle to create success tend to need someone to lead or manage their efforts. They need precisely the opposite of those who are successful and self-directed. They need someone to tell them what to do, how to do it, and when they need to have something completed. These people will complain of being micromanaged, but the reason they are being given the strong direction is that they’re not directing themselves already.
Greater success is available to you. But to have it, you have to direct your own work, possess the discipline to do what’s necessary without being told, and produce the outcomes that success is built upon without having being asked to do so.
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Filed under: The Hustler's Playbook