People from all types of background have gone on to achieve success at staggering heights. We've all heard this song and dance before; that it doesn't matter where you are from or what your circumstances were, but rather, where you are going.

Since success and background are independent, it begs the question, why do some people choose success, and why do some people choose not to succeed?

Success tends to be the result of a decision on our part. At the end of the day, whether or not we achieve success in our endeavours comes down to whether or not we choose to act. A failure to act may originate in a desire to take the path of least resistance, or perhaps it's because we are unable to see past the roadblock before us. Whatever the case may be in your particular experience, see if any of the following have ever applied to you:

1. We Choose Not To Be Determined Enough. We decide to listen to the naysayers, to allow doubt to creep into our thinking. We start looking around at other people's experiences, and begin to slowly decide that perhaps we are not as up to the task as we initially thought we were.

2. We View Defeats as Much Larger than What They Actually Are. We are unable to see past the current failure/roadblock/obstacle. We believe that when we fail or stumble that the entire plan is faulty, or that we were not destined to accomplish our goal. When we are confronted with these momentary hits of failure, we tend to over-react, believe things are truly much worse than they are. In these crucial moments we are unable to see the larger picture, the greater strategy. Many people will lose a battle and forfeit the war. The fact is, your success and dreams is larger than this one roadblock or failure, so why allot it this kind of importance?

3. We Don't Expect More from Ourselves. We decide that we are unable to give that extra effort because it is too much work, it's not worth it anyways; it hasn't worked for someone else, so why would it work for us. Whether it's an expectation we get from someone else, or something that has been imbedded in us, we are falsely led to believe that there is a low ceiling to what we are capable of achieving-- when in reality, when we focus on things we are more than capable of astonishing ourselves.

4. We Lose Focus Early in the Process. It's easy to be distracted in a world of constant social messages, emails, advertisements, and offers promising to be the miracle cure for one and all. The successful among us find a way to tune out this noise and focus intently on what they want to achieve, and nothing else.

5. We Choose a Goal or Dream that Doesn't Mean All That Much to Us. Is your goal something that keeps you up at night? Is it something that you think about with every available thought? Is it something that you plot and scheme about while you are having dinner with friends, punching in the clock at work, or driving? Your goal should be an inescapable thought, a dream that simply will not go away. Why? Because this means that no matter what, you will go to the farthest ends of the Earth to achieve it. Failures on the way will be swatted aside, excuses will be shrugged off, and no one would even dare voicing their opposition to you. This is how you should feel about your dream.

6. We Choose to Give Up. The word "no" is something that causes a near visceral reaction. From the time we were kids we have been told no when we asked for something, when we desired something. This continues into adulthood. Tell a grown man "no" and most of the time he will relent. Learn to not accept the status quo, to challenge the time and tested, and find your own way.

7. We Decide to Stray off our Plan when It's Not Necessary to Do So. We'll see a shortcut and take it. We will stray from our plans the first chance we get if there's even a scent that it means that we'll get a shortcut out of it. We're designed to take the path of least resistance; it's been hardwired into our brains for thousands of years. However, the path of least resistance doesn't always hold the key for long-term success.

8. We Win a Couple Battles, then Think We've Come Far Enough. This happens often; someone sets on a path to their ultimate goal, gets the first couple steps out of the way, and then suddenly for seemingly no reason whatsoever, abandon their goal. Why does this happen? Because we grow a sense of satisfaction from our little victories so bloated that it robs us of our desire to continue on to greater things.

9. We Pick Negative Goals. "I don't want to get fat." "I don't want to be 40 and still alone." These goals are self-defeating, in the sense that you are playing to not lose, instead of playing to win. There is a subtle but very distinct difference between having a positive goal and having a negative goal. Avoid staking your future on goals based out of fear.

10. We Refuse to Make the Necessary Changes. Often times, the difference between the present and a future full of success is a couple changes. Whether it's a habit that needs to change, or a fresh perspective, we often catch ourselves in our old, destructive habits. Sometimes this means that we have to learn something that we originally might have thought unnecessary, or it means finally abandoning that pesky habit that has kept us back.

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