Are superstars born or made? Do they have the genius of supreme achievement by an accident of birth, a favorable environment or from their own individual effort? Whatever the reasons, superstars are a different breed. They must succeed and they will succeed. They have an amazing capacity to dream big, strive even bigger and come through against all the odds.

Can we learn to become better achievers by looking inside the minds of the big-time peak performers? Let's see what makes them tick and why they are able to achieve so much more and at a higher level than anyone else. Here are their characteristics.

1. A Can-Do Attitude. Superstars have a "make-it-happen" attitude. They take it for granted that they will succeed. They act as if it's a done deal that they will win. They are infectious in their enthusiasm for a project and enlist others easily to make it become a reality. They are bursting with positive expectancy that everything will be a smashing success. Their motto is "Get It Done!"

2. A Bias To Action. Superstars take action. They start acting on an idea or plan quickly and make room in their schedule for tangible, concrete objectives that take them closer to their goals. They spend time reflectively, but take action when action is required. They don't waste time over-planning. They get down to it.

3. Atmospheric Standards. Superstars are often not 100% happy with their performances. They are not negative about them, but they are realistic and demanding of themselves and often of those around them. They continually seek improvement in even the tiniest areas of their performance and regularly raise the bar as each new ability level is surmounted. They hold their best all-time performances as the ideal and seek to rise to that level always.

4. Superb Organizational Skills. Superstars know how to break projects down into manageable bite-sized chunks. Their favorite motto is "Mile by mile it's a trial; inch by inch it's a cinch". They know that many details placed together in proper order lead to something big. They spend time planning and keeping records to show progress and to stay on time projections. They are in a hurry to succeed, but never rush.

5. Decisiveness. Superstars are decisive. This is a characteristic of all successful people. They gather information and quickly decide to act on it and later make changes based on new information. They take advantage of the windows of opportunities that arise and go for it. They have confidence that they made the right decision and the confidence that if they do not, they can successfully change gear and recover for a positive outcome.

6. They Sacrifice. Superstars know how to sacrifice to make something happen. They know they often can't have it all and that they must have singular focus to succeed. They are good at going into "tunnel-vision" to block out all distractions so they can rapidly advance past their objectives. They deny themselves those things that do not contribute to making them successful. They know how to be self-disciplined and stay on track.

7. They Love The Struggle. Superstars love the battle. They love the process. They love the climb up the ladder. Superstars love to be in the game, the hunt, the chase. This is what it is all about for many of them. They are excited pursuing their goals and take extreme pleasure in the challenge to see what impossible obstacles they can leap on their way to success. They want stories to tell, bragging rights as part of the success trophy.

8. They Love To Achieve. Meeting objectives and reaching goals is energizing to top achievers. They can't wait to get to work and see the results of their efforts. They boost their self-esteem and self-confidence as they finish a project or task that is highly satisfying. They pour their entire passion into what they love to do and complete it with all their energies and enthusiasm.

Some people look at superstars and lament that they could never do what they do. They get discouraged at the gap between what is and what could be. Other people look to the superstars and are inspired. They use the superstars as a template or benchmark and use them as models for what they would like to achieve. They view them as "best practices" and measure themselves against the superstars. Watch a superstar and become discouraged or become encouraged...the choice is yours.

Author's Bio: 

Bill Cole, MS, MA, a leading authority on peak performance, mental toughness and coaching, is founder and CEO of Procoach Systems, a consulting firm that helps organizations and professionals achieve more success in business, life and sports. He is also the Founder and President of the International Mental Game Coaching Association (, an organization dedicated to advancing the research, development, professionalism and growth of mental game coaching worldwide. He is a multiple Hall-Of-Fame honoree as an athlete, coach and school alumnus, an award-winning scholar-athlete, published book author and articles author, and has coached at the highest levels of major-league pro sports, big-time college athletics and corporate America. For a free, extensive article archive, or for questions and comments visit him at You can call Procoach Systems toll free at 888-445-0291.