Like you, we have quite a few areas of interest, so we post everything under one or more of these main labels: Personal Development, Business Development (startup and marketing), Intelligence (emotional, spiritual, etc.), News, Fun, Newsletter (chat about things we've emailed). Enjoy, and keep in touch!

Friday, 7 January 2011

The Principles of Success - update

Here's an expanded version of last month's article.

“The Principles of Success” by Patrick W Jordan
Summary of a talk by him about this book
on 10th December 2010

1. Take responsibility
Focus on what you can control (e.g. run your fastest, not win the race), and learn from setbacks.

(Do you have a ‘fixed mindset’ (people are good at something or not), or a ‘growth mindset (people can learn anything)? The reality is between the two, however people with a growth mindset do better because they are more resilient. To foster this mindset it is better to praise people for effort at school rather than say that they are smart.)

2. Set goals
Goals need to be big, broken down into milestones, and finally the ‘little thing I can do today.’
They must be congruent, and not clash with one another, and be things we want e.g. Hedonic – bringing us pleasure, or Eudaimonic – fun but also related to a higher purpose. (“80% of people have goals that bring no pleasure, such as promotion at work they don’t enjoy!”)

To bring success, goals should be:
Ambitious (a stretch, but realistic not ridiculous)
Specific (measurable)

3. Be positive
Being optimistic about the big picture is always good. Being optimistic about small things is not always good, such as in safety critical situations. Optimism and pessimism are not seen as opposites today, it is possible to be both!

Key Concept: savouring. (“Count your blessings.”) Be aware of and enjoy what is going well: write these down in a journal at the end of each week.

4. Persevere intelligently
We need to have a plan and work hard towards that. At the same time we need to be flexible if the plan is not working and be relaxed about failure (unless it is safety critical). We need to be adventurous and try things, because when people look back on life most of their regrets are to do with missed opportunities.

Key Concept: develop strengths. Too often organisations send people on courses to overcome weaknesses. It is better to develop strengths, and do the least needed to cope with weaknesses.

5. Connect with others
We need to recognise that we get most out of life by helping others get what they want out of life.
Our network includes those we have strong ties with (such as family) and those we have weaker ties with (such as those we get to know at conferences). The latter are more important in career development because they “open more worlds for you.” Friends tend to talk about either problems or opportunities; and either internal to themselves or external. Those who will energise us most are those who naturally talk about external opportunities. Good team work is hindered by people who are overcritical or uncritically overenthusiastic.

Key Concept: the Golden Rule Do to others as you would like them to do to you. It is good to focus on other people and help them to feel good about themselves. In motivating employees, praise is often more important than money.

You can buy Patrick's book from his website. He is a psychologist, and this book is based on his research in drawing the key principles of success out of many people's writing and research on the subject. His principles don't just apply to those areas where we think of ourselves as needing to be successful, but to happiness and fulfilment in work and life in general.

Contact me to find out more, or to increase the happiness or success in your life!

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