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Many high achievers across the globe are greatly admired and celebrated. We see or hear about their successes and sometimes look on in wonderment as to how such feats were chalked. How on earth did the likes of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Jack Ma and Richard Branson make a success of their lives and careers? Well, the reality is that a multiplicity of factors accounted for the strides they made and are making in their respective fields of work. A close observation of the stories surrounding the lives of many of these notable persons in respect to their career pursuits in particular reveals certain commonalities; factors that are common to their individual experiences. Discussed below are processes, habits and daily routines great achievers have in common.

Make a decision and stick with it

The story is told of how Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple resolved he was going to leave an indelible mark in the sands of time when he discovered he was adopted. Bill Gates decided to quit college to fully focus on building a business. In spite of the many bumpy experiences, he stuck with his decision to build a highly successful tech company. Muhammad Ali decided he was going to work towards becoming a great boxer when his bike was stolen. These persons made crucial decisions when they were at the crossroads and stuck with those decisions.

What exactly is the point being made? Don`t just go with the flow. Make well informed and calculated decisions about your career pursuits. You may have lofty dreams and ideas but until you decide to pursue them, they will merely remain dreams and ideas. Making decisions play a critical role in goal-setting; setting goals, pursuing them and actually achieving same hinges on the decisions you make. Perhaps it is about time you resolved to be the best employee in your organization or decided to start your own business and actually begin to put in the efforts to see this realized. There should come a time in your life and career when it dawns on you that you ought to not settle for less than you are worth. Many individuals who have successfully attained their goals and made a success of their lives have all had those awakening moments.

Build on past successes

Many phenomenal achievers have been known to build on past successes; be it their own successes or that of others. A wide variety of great inventions and advances in medicine in our world today would never have been realized in this day and age if the inventors and researchers had entirely ignored the works of their predecessors. It was Isaac Newton the great scientist who once admitted: “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

Great achievers also choose to focus on their strengths while they explore how best to deploy them. You may have made some strides in one area or the other in time past or perhaps a little success here and a little success there. Don`t downplay such successes however small they might look to you now. Revisit them and consider ways of leveraging on such past successes in the face of current opportunities and challenges.

Commit to life-long learning

Brian Tracy opined: “Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field.” Stephen Covey on his part stated: “The key to success is dedication to life-long learning.”

Is it surprising that many of the world`s greats such as Warren Buffet, Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates are voracious readers and are continually learning so as to up their game? The reality is that continual learning and self improvement are prerequisites for getting ahead in any given career. You slack at your own expense.

You should never come to a point in your life where you think you have arrived and that you know it all. There is always room for improvement; you can always be better and bigger than you currently are. Make continuous improvement a personal life philosophy. When you fail, don`t be too hard on yourself. Learn from your mistakes and improve. This cycle will play a significant role in directing your self-improvement journey.

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