"Circumstance does not make the man; it reveals him to himself."―James Allen
Success is an effect, not a cause―the outward manifestation of an internal reality. To be successful, you must see the world different from the norm. Further, you don't react to life, but rather, embody principles and ideals that organically facilitate the outcomes you desire.
Here's your new mental framework:
1. You Are In Control
Many people have what psychologists refer to as an external "locus of control"―believing factors outside their own control determine the outcomes of their lives.
Conversely, internal locus of control is where you believe factors within your control determine the outcomes of your life. Interestingly, research shows that students who engage in entrepreneurial education increased their internal locus of control more than student who don't. Not surprisingly, entrepreneurs frequently score higher on internal locus of control measures than most.
2. Ambiguity Is A Good Thing
Tolerance for ambiguity is the degree to which you are comfortable with uncertainty, unpredictability, conflicting directions, and multiple demands. Most people despise ambiguity. They want clear guidelines and instructions. Without which, they flounder or completely stall.
Children are known for their risk-taking behaviors and high tolerance for ambiguity. They're comfortable in situations without assurance of winning and losing. Unlike managers, entrepreneurs also have a high tolerance for ambiguity. To be successful, you embrace―rather than avoid―uncertainty.
3. Imposter Syndrome Should Be Embraced
"Oh, damn! Here we go again! What were they thinking? They gave me this role; don't they know I'm faking it?"―Renée Zellweger
If you want to be an innovator, you must first be an impostor. As Peter Diamandis confessed, "The day before something is truly a breakthrough, it's a crazy idea."
According to research, nearly 70 percent of people have impostor syndrome. Hilariously, if you don't have impostor syndrome, you're probably just ignorant of your own stupidity. Embrace the fact that you don't know all the answers. Expose your weaknesses rather than hiding them to inflate your ego.
4. Fear Is Not To Be Feared, But Essential
"Fear is not your enemy. It is a powerful source of energy that can be harnessed and used for your benefit."―Russ Harris
When you're anxious, don't try to calm yourself down, that generally worsens your performance. Instead, reframe your anxiety as excitement and you'll experience a positive spike in your performance.
5. Happiness And Success Are Effects, Not Causes
"There is no way to happiness―happiness is the way."―Thich Nhat Hanh
If "success" is your primary objective, you probably won't get it. Chasing success is like chasing happiness. You can't pursue it directly. Both success and happiness ensue from something far more fundamental―who you are.
6. Success Is Harder To Deal With Than Failure
"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power." ―Abraham Lincoln
For most people, privilege is a poison. Once you succeed, or have certain privileges (e.g., time, money, fame, accolades), rather than continuing to hone your craft, you indulge the benefits of previous success, which inevitably damages future performance. Quickly, you become a has-been.
To be successful, your mindset and behavior must remain constant regardless of success or defeat. Everything outside of you is noise. You're compelled forward by intrinsic vision and values.
7. Who You Seek Advice From Matters
"Never ask advice of someone with whom you wouldn't want to trade places."―Darren Hardy
Most people seek amateur advice from peers. More than advice, they're seeking validation. To be successful, seek expert advice from people who are where you want to be. Don't seek praise; seek criticism.
8. Competition Is The Enemy
"Innovation is cheaper than competition."―Dan Sullivan
To be successful, stop competing; instead, create. Rather than competing with others, make them compete with you.
Becoming insanely successful is the natural by-product of behaviors and beliefs. If you come to know and live like those who are successful, you will quickly find yourself in the same boat. It's like magic. But it's not.