“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life, think of it, dream of it, live on that one idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves and every other part of your body be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success.” – Swami Vivekananda.
Success is something that everyone desires, but if it were so easy, everyone would have it. Its relative exclusiveness is what makes it special. Research have shown that success is exclusive to those who do extraordinary things and it not necessarily a product of luck. Little wonder Zig Zag said “The foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty”.
Desire plays a very instrumental role in one’s quest for success. “Desire is the key to motivation, but it is determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal – a commitment to excellence that will enable you attain the success you seek” – Mario Andretti.
To be successful, one must be intentional in standing out from the crowd. In this article, we will attempt to examine some ways through which you can stand out from the crowd as the professional that you are.
1. Take yourself seriously. Being an entrepreneur, leader, or businessperson requires that you become a master at your craft. It means being competent at the things you do, constantly honing and developing your skills in every way possible. When you take yourself seriously, so do others. The reality is that serious people are only interested in doing business with people who take their work seriously.
2. Take time to do little things right. Today, most people don’t seem to have time to do little things right. They believe that ‘somebody will do it,’ ‘anybody can do it’. The truth is that if it were so easy, everybody would do it. If you pay attention to details and always take your time to put little things right, it will stand you out from others who ignore little things.
3. Live a principled life. Opening arms to everything that comes your way is not the road to success. You must learn to say NO, when need be and YES when the need also arises. The life of ‘every way is a way’ will make you porous and without direction. You must learn to adhere strictly to your principles so that people can know you for who you are.
4. Imbibe the spirit of creativity. According to Harold Geneen, one of the key components of success is innovation. Creativity is not necessarily creating new things, but doing old things in a new way. Think of a new mind blowing way of teaching students, any new way of harnessing resources around you, a new way of marketing an existing product, and the world will come begging for your skill.
5. Ask quality questions. When you develop the mind of always wanting to know the reason behind things you see, things you are taught, how things can be better done, it will propel you to always ask quality questions that could inform deep research that could lead to innovation. In a class of 50, if a particular student is fond of asking mind probing questions, such a student would become an asset and s/he could easily be called to do certain things while others are ignored.
6. Know yourself. Get feedback from others and learn as much as you can about how you come across. Then you can accurately target how you appear in a crowd and what you need to work on. The truth is that you can’t accurately market a product that you don’t properly understand how it works – it is the same with you as person, you must know who you are and then market yourself appropriately.
7. Be conscious and confident. Showing up consciously means always being on time, honoring your commitments, and being prepared. Nothing is more powerful than an individual acting out of a well-developed consciousness. When you truly believe you can create what you envision, when you’re not afraid of the obstacles, that confidence will automatically make you stand out from the rest.
8. Always be of service. Being useful, being helpful is an important aspect of making a great impression. Show up with a spirit of empathy and something to give. An attitude of service makes people interested in what you have to offer. In doing this, you would create a good impression about and you will live rent-free in the heads of those that you come across. You can be sure that referrals will flow.
9. Make your life your message. Make sure that everything you do–how you show up, how you act, what you say, what you do–is a reflection of who you are, so your character and spirit are consistent across every situation. Even scriptures say that let your light (life) before men. When you do this in all sincerity of heart, you will stand out from the crowd.
10. Always be prepared and be kind to everyone. Lots of people are only nice to those who can do something for them. Stand out by treating everyone as important and interesting–even those who can do nothing for you in return. When an opportunity turns up, the person who is ready and able to be part whatever needs to happen will always stand out.
Let me conclude by sharing the great words of Vince Lombardi “The price of success is hardwork, dedication to the job at hand, and the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand”.
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