Success can mean different things to different people. We all have different values, goals and dreams for the future. What is most important, is what success means to you. Not what your boss thinks, or your friends, or your neighbors, or even your family members. Yes, getting positive input from others outlining what success means for them is a good thing as none of us have all of the right answers.

At the end of the day, the best definition of success is the one that you give to it. In my opinion, success is having a healthy balance of a number of things, such as my level of personal health, my on going personal development, my personal happiness, my contribution to society, my personal relationship, traveling and experiencing new things and my financial health.

I have found that the following 8 things can have a negative effect and can hold most people back from achieving success in their lives.

1. Hanging Around Negative People.

Did you ever speak to a person only to feel totally drained afterwards? Do you know anyone who has never a positive thing to say about anyone? These people can leave you feeling drained both mentally and physically. If you cannot avoid these negative people altogether, limit the amount of time that you spend with them. These people enjoy spreading negativity, bad news and gossip. You don’t need this in your life. Instead, surround yourself with positive minded people who speak well of others and have similar goals and dreams as you. Connect with people who push you and want to see you succeed.

2. Not Exercising

We all know by now the many wonderful benefits that exercise has on both our body and our mind. Regular exercise will have you looking better and feeling great about yourself and you will find that you will have more energy. Start off with 30 minutes of light exercise a few times a week and you will start to reap the positive rewards in no time. Exercise doesn’t have to be torture or feel like a chore. Find a type of exercise that you will enjoy and have fun doing; you could take dance lessons, join your local Yoga studio or set up a small exercise area at home.

3. Stop Using Your Smartphone

Smartphones are a wonderful invention. They are an organizer, a communication device, a music player, they allow you to network with people from all over the world, you can use them to take photographs of memories from your Summer vacation and you can use them to search for information on any subject in seconds. I think we can all agree that smartphone use has got out of hand. Dinner tables are starting to resemble phone stores. People are constantly checking Facebook updates, Tweets and the latest Pins during a conversation. Make the conscious habit to limit your daily usage of your smartphone. Put it out of reach when you come hone. Don’t use your smartphone at the dining table or during a conversation. Pay more attention to what is going on around you and start enjoying good conversation.

4. Not Planning Your Day

Do you wake up every morning with just enough time to take a shower, get dressed and have a quick cup of coffee before running out the door? Do you press the snooze button to get another 5 minutes of rest? Do you wake up dreading the thoughts of another day? This was me a few years ago. This all changed when I started using a journal ever morning. When I started journaling, I began to feel excited each day reading my list of goals. I planned essential tasks for each day to keep me on track with my goals, and I also wrote down what I was grateful for every day. I spend no more than five minutes journaling in the morning, but it has helped to change my life in many ways. Waking up with gratitude, feeling motivated by your goals and planning a road map to get you were you want to be is a fantastic way to start each day.

5. Watching Too Much TV

According to Statista, in 2016 the average American watched over 270 minutes of television a day. This equates to over 31 hours a week! Soap operas, talent shows, reality TV, catching up on box sets, it is easy to see how the time can go by. I enjoy watching a good documentary or movie like anyone else, but I limit the amount of time that I spend watching TV. If I find myself channel hopping, I just switch the TV off and put some music on and read a book or watch something educational online. Try to limit the amount of time that you spend watching TV, start reading again, listen to music or call a friend or family member.

6. Stop Ignoring Your Goals

Throughout our lives we have always had goals. From making the team in school, getting good grades in college, what career we wanted to have, and perhaps what type of life we wanted to live in the future. Goals excite us and push us to grow and change as a person. Have goals that give you reasons to take action and strive everyday to become a better person. Stop ignoring your goals; get passionate about life and about your future. Write down a list of your short, medium and long-term goals and plan a road map to achieve them.

7. Stop Giving Up

Most of are guilty of this one. Have you ever started an exercise program only to give up after a few days or weeks? Have you tried to eat a healthy diet only to slip back to your old ways? Have you ever made a New Years resolution only to give up a few days later? If you are going to exercise, improve your diet, read more, learn a skill, start a hobby give yourself enough reasons why you want to start this habit. Make the habit as enjoyable as possible and organize the time needed each week to do your new habit. Use your daily journal to keep you on track in a positive way. Stop giving up! Start living life and make the most of your time. Get passionate about YOU!

8. Stop Living In The Past.

The person who you were 5 or 10 years ago was probably a different person than who you are now. Our values can change over time, as well as sometimes our friends and our goals for the future. If you have made mistakes in the past, join the club, we all have. None of us are perfect. The thing is to acknowledge and learn from past mistakes.

Remember, you are NOT defined by your past. What is most important is the person who you are today. Start living in the now and make every day count. Now is the perfect time to turn the page and start writing a new chapter in your life.

 

Damien Thomas

I believe that personal development is an exciting lifelong process as well as a wonderful journey of self-discovery. It is my sincere wish that I can help people to believe in themselves, believe in their dreams, and most importantly, to take action to achieve the life of their dreams.