I love quotes. One of my favorites is by the late Jim Rohn who said, "Find out what poor people do, and don't do it." Blunt and not politically correct, but it stuck with me.

That's why every entrepreneurs should do everything in their power to find out what successful people do and learn what mistakes to avoid

I must admit I was rather surprised with what I discovered. Many of the practices of successful people are actually downright simple. They learn to avoid the chatter of the latest trends and fads and pour their energy into a few simple concepts. 

Here are five practices that successful people use to be healthy and productive. 

1. They start by getting organized.

I mean this both physically and metaphorically. Marie Kondo released her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up back in 2014 and it really hit home. By cleaning up both my work space and my house, I was free to focus on what I needed to.

It's remarkable how much time is wasted looking for documents or an item we need yet we think nothing of it, as if that's the way it is. It doesn't.

Successful people, as David Allen teaches in his book Getting Things Done, to be ultra-productive we must have systems in place that allow us to access the tools we need when we need them, with minimal distraction.

2. They hydrate.

We all know that water is good for us. No surprise there.

But water as a productivity hack is relatively new. It's gotten a lot of attention in the personal development world over the past few years.

Our body needs water to function, it's as simple as that. Dehydration saps your productive cells making you sluggish, tired and unable to function at 100 percent. Anyone who has ever flown international flights and not drunk enough can attest to what this feels like.

Coke used to be my go to pick-me-up drink, but I found it hard to focus for any extended periods of time. Going cold-turkey and drinking water was one of the best things I did for my business, and my health.

3. They don't let email control them.

Email is both a blessing and a curse. It has replaced the phone as the number one form of business communication. I used to think that I should start my day by checking my email and going through it, answering them as I went. Boy, was I wrong.

Your inbox is filled with what bestselling author Brendon Burchard once called on Twitter "other people's agendas." The sheer amount of emails most entrepreneurs and business people is overwhelming. It might sound selfish, but put yourself first and you need a system that does just that.

To achieving this, first, never check your email first thing in the morning. That hour is devoted to you and your family. Figure out what you need to get done that day before touching your inbox.

Second, use the "4D system" for every message. Go through your messages and determine which category they fit into before answering them. Do it, delegate it, delay it, delete it.  

4. They schedule time to work.

Successful people don't leave things up to chance. They make time for the things they need to do.

Night owls, like me, schedule an hour each evening after the family has gone to bed. The early risers do it before the family wakes. Whatever works for you.

It's not enough to just say you'll do something. You need to schedule it in, like dinner or taking a shower. Steven Pressfield, in his bestselling book The War of Art, quotes Somerset Maugham who said "I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o'clock sharp."

Something to think about.

5. They delegate.

As with our emails, we must learn to delegate as much as we can. Don't feel you have to do everything, in fact, that's a surefire way to overwhelm yourself.

Whether it's your employees or a VA (virtual assistant), hand off as much work as you possibly can to people you know are capable enough of doing a decent job. The key word there is "decent."

The key to successful delegation is uncovering each employees' strength and utilizing it. Doing this freed up 60 percent of my time to allow me to build a second business while running the first. If you want to grow fast, delegate fast.

There are those high achievers that feel they are the only ones who will be able to do the job and refuse to delegate. But every successful entrepreneur creates a team around themselves to ensure they free up time to work on what's truly important.

Published on: Feb 1, 2018