If you want to be successful, there's a chance you've turned to the Internet for advice. While there are countless articles out there offering countless tips, there's a very good chance they haven't actually helped you achieve any real measure of success. Why is that? Because most of the messages we've been told about success are wrong. We're told to follow a formula and that success will practically be guaranteed. We're told to mimic what others do.

That's just not going to cut it.

The truth is that success comes from understanding and valuing who you are - not taking your cues from someone else. If you don't know yourself, you'll end up wasting time at jobs that aren't right for you. You'll lose momentum, and your career will stall. You'll be no closer to success than when you first started out.

So how do you stop trying to be someone you're not? Here are seven ways.

1. Get curious about your own Genius.

First, figure out your Genius. This is the type of work or thinking that makes you feel challenged in the best way possible. To figure this out, think of a time when you were in the zone at work. What was the thinking that propelled you into that super engaged state? What types of problems were you solving and how were you approaching them?

2. Own your Genius.

After you figure out your Genius, you need to own it. After all, it's your superpower. Why wouldn't you use the biggest advantage you have in your arsenal? By playing to your strengths, you'll stand out as a superstar employee and position yourself for better opportunities.

3. Question why you want to be someone you're not.

In order to stop trying to be someone you're not, you've got to evaluate why you want to be someone else in the first place. Who are you trying to model yourself after? Is it a specific person? Or a specific type of person? Why is that?

Many of us suffer from imposter syndrome. If that's your problem, it makes sense that you would want to change who you are and become someone you perceive as more likely to be successful. Anytime you catch yourself feeling envious or challenging your gut decisions, stop yourself and question why that is.

4. Start thinking of time spent trying to be someone else as time wasted.

None of us has time to waste. When you catch yourself trying to be someone else, remind yourself that you're wasting valuable time. If you want to take it a step further, make a list of things you could be doing instead. When you start to look at all the things you could be doing to reach another level of success, you'll stop wasting unnecessary time on things that won't get you there.

5. Stop comparing yourself to others.

Do you remember in school when your teacher told you to keep your eyes on your own paper? That's what I recommend here. No one can do your job for you. No one can do your job like you. That's why it's important to stay focused on what you're doing and forget about comparing yourself to others. It doesn't matter where they are or what they're doing. It matters where you are and what you're doing.

6. Make an effort to appreciate yourself.

On that same note, don't just pay attention to what you're doing - appreciate it. Combat burn out and start practicing gratitude for your Genius and for the opportunities you have and will have in the future. True happiness is about loving yourself, and success will come as a natural extension of that.

7. Trust your gut and make decisions that feel right to you.

Greatness is possible when you become who you're meant to be. Once you figure out your Genius, lean in to it, and make your decisions based on what your gut tells you is right.

Published on: Sep 19, 2017