10 Key Differences Between Successful and Unsuccessful People

Have you ever wondered why some people succeed greatly in life, while others seem to give up altogether? There are some major differences between these two kinds of people, and there are measurable reasons why some are successful and some aren’t.

But the good news is that even if you’re not successful right now, you can start today and most certainly turn that around! Below are the top ten reasons why people who succeed have achieved their goals, and how you can be more like them.

Tell us which one you find most helpful in the comment section!

1. Successful People Have a Clear Vision

If you don’t have a direction, you’ll end up somewhere you don’t really want to be. An end result is what you need to have in mind not only to be on the right track but to also get a motivation boost every time you visualize it.

So think about the things you truly want in life. Where do you see yourself a year from now?

What do you want to change about yourself and your current life so that you can get closer to that vision?

2. Successful People Maintain Consistency Until They Achieve Results

Consistency brings results, but you need to be patient and to be doing what you do long enough to see any progress. It may not be visible in the beginning; you may not be making any money during the first few months after creating your business, and you may not be losing any weight even though you’re dieting.

But change happens when you’ve put in enough effort and time. Once it does, you’ll feel great about yourself and that sense of accomplishment will help you move forward.

So find ways to stay on track no matter what, don’t let distractions get in the way or other people discourage you. Keep going and know you will succeed, it’s just a matter of time.

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3. Successful People Create an Environment That Breeds Success

Your environment must breed success if you don’t want to be ordinary but to achieve big things in life. That means that you shouldn’t keep company with negative people, read information made for the masses, eat unhealthy food, or the like.

All that affects your judgment, your energy levels, your health, and success. Make the necessary changes so that you can be inspired, positive and productive every single day.

Communicate with those with similar goals, read biographies of successful people, go to places that increase your energy, take care of your health. All that matters and is part of the person you’re trying to become.

4. Successful People Don’t Listen to Naysayers

There will be at least a few people in your surroundings that will tell you your goal is not worth pursuing, that what you’re doing is crazy, that your idea is impossible. Your job is to ignore that and focus on your vision instead.

As Henry Ford famously said, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.” Successful people maintain an unwavering belief in their abilities and vision, even when faced with doubt or criticism from others.

To develop resilience, you need to ignore naysayers, practice positive self-talk, and surround yourself with supportive individuals who believe in your goals. Regularly remind yourself of your past successes and the reasons behind your pursuits to maintain motivation and confidence in the face of negativity.

5. Successful People Learn from Mistakes and Keep Trying

Failure is part of the success formula, so it’s better to accept that sooner if you want to succeed. Be open to mistakes and even welcome them in your life.

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Research by Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck highlights the importance of a growth mindset in achieving success. People with a growth mindset view failures and mistakes as opportunities to learn and improve, rather than as definitive setbacks.

Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson once said, “Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.” Embracing this mindset is crucial for long-term success, as it enables you to view challenges as stepping stones rather than roadblocks.

To cultivate a growth mindset and learn from your mistakes, start by reframing failures as valuable learning experiences. After each setback, take time to reflect on what you can do differently next time and create a plan of action to implement those changes.

Celebrate your progress, no matter how small, and remember that every mistake brings you one step closer to your goals.

6. Successful People Don’t Make Excuses

Those who don’t succeed can think of tens of excuses right now as to why today is not the right day to start a project, why it’s better to wait until they have more experience and knowledge, and why this may not be the right thing for them. Excuses are only mental barriers, though.

You created them and can destroy them as easily.

7. Successful People Go the Extra Mile

Average people do what they are expected to do, and nothing more. That’s why they can never get to the next level.

But leaders prefer to work harder today so that they can be successful after some time. They provide value with everything they do, work more hours, sleep less and dedicate more energy and focus than anyone else around them.

8. Successful People Constantly Learn New Things

If you avoid learning new stuff, you’re only getting further from success. But prosperous people, hard-working entrepreneurs, high achievers and outstanding artists are all students of life.

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They learn from others, from the past, read, travel and get to know themselves more. That helps them exceed every day.

9. Successful People Work Smarter, Not Just Harder

The average person wastes a lot of time daily doing meaningless things like overthinking, feeling sorry for himself, being lazy and more. Highly productive individuals, on the other hand, those who get things done in less time and get closer to their goals because of that, know how to work smart without trying too hard.

Get better at time management, eliminate anything that’s not productive, wake up earlier, stop multitasking, delegate and automate what you can and have more time to do what matters.

10. Successful People Practice Gratitude

Those who succeed aren’t greedy. They work for their success and know it will come.

But until then, they appreciate what’s around them right now. As that’s what’s important.

Happiness is in the present moment and can be found when you let go of your desire to change things. Successful people wake up with a smile on their face and thank for what they have in their life.

That makes them live in abundance. And the more you’re grateful for something, the more you receive from it.

Which of These Habits of Successful People Resonates Most With You?

Is there anything on this list that you have already mastered? Anything you’re still working on?

Is there anything you would add to this list of reasons why some people succeed and others don’t? Please let us know in the comment section!

We would love to connect with you and hear all about it.

4 Comments
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4 Comments
  1. Don Patton

    September 13, 2020 at 7:55 AM

    How do you define success?
    I am 65 and have struggled with the concept of “success”, looking back in the past of my life.
    I have come to the conclusion that I did the best that I could. I kept my marriage of 45 years. We raised and educated our 2 daughters. We have 9 grand kids, who love me.
    I worked for a manufacturing company for 39 years. Retired through a “Buy out” in 2015…

  2. Ray

    October 14, 2019 at 6:09 PM

    I have always truly believed all of these 10 things you have just stated but what happens if you are in what I call a “stuck position”. I do have a vision and have held on to that for all of my young adult life of 16 to present and I am currently 55 years old. I have struggled all my life and keep trying to accomplish my vision but for some reason, I have NEVER had the opportunity, money, ability or whatever other element that was needed to make it happen. With each passing year, my hopes and dreams are fading away. Now depression is my struggle. I have always been a responsible son, brother, husband, father, now grandfather and I sometimes feel angry that my life has passed and my sacrifices I made over the years has not produced accomplishments that are so important to me. I am getting tired….please pray for me because I feel I am giving up….

    • Rg

      February 16, 2020 at 8:25 AM

      You will succeed. The enemy in your mind wants you to think and believe what you are saying. John 10:10
      Don’t believe it, resist it James 4:7
      By taking all of what you described and completely replacing it with Jeremiah 29:11 And other good things.
      Don’t give up, just keep going!
      Watch a marathon many many finish just at different times :).
      I’m in a similar situation, not worth thinking what could have been. I’ve done that many times and it doesn’t help. Just pick a clear destination, get into your steady pace and just keep headed that way.
      🙂 we’ll see you at the finish line!

      • Avera

        May 20, 2020 at 7:04 PM

        You need two things only…a loving solid and encouraging upbringing and lots of smarts. If you have these you will succeed.

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