Are you one of those people that think that success is only for the gifted? Or better yet, that really successful people are lucky or that everything they have today was given to them on a silver spoon.

Here's the deal, while that may be true in some cases, it would be a very few. Success is not about luck or gifts or hand outs. I have been saying for years that "success is based on persistency and consistency, not magic."

What this means is that success comes from persistently doing those things we choose to do, on a consistent basis. We all have the potential to be more successful, to accomplish more with our lives. It is not so important what you choose, it is that you choose that makes the difference.

We all experience this world, this life, filtered through our own eyes and our own files that we call morals, ethics, principles and core beliefs. We may experience the same event, but what we saw, heard or felt will be different for each person. The reason is because we are all individuals. This is what makes the world such an interesting place. The interpretations of events, the opinions, ideas, ideals are all based on individual interpretations of the unfolding of events before us.

Now I could write an entire book on this subject but that is not my intention here. What I want to establish is that, ultimately what we experience in life is the result of how we decide or choose to interpret events.

Did you catch that, I said our decision or choice of how to interpret events. You see life is based on decisions or choices. I am sure you have heard one or several of the analogies about the two siblings that experienced some traumatic event in their youth. One grows up to be a criminal and the other a very successful member of society. The reason they grew up so differently was because of how they chose to interpret and internalize the event from earlier in life. We, just like the siblings I just mentioned, are all the products of our decisions and choices.

You do want to be successful don't you? I'll give you a hint; it starts with deciding or choosing to be successful.

Now like I said earlier, I don't think that success is based on magic. So I am not about to tell you that all you have to do to become successful is to decide you want to be successful and boom, you will be. I wish that was how it works, but the truth is… it’s not. It takes more than that, it takes work. I hope I didn't scare you off with the "W" word. But anything worth having is worth working toward.

For example, when I left my career as a Research Biologist to start a business, I didn't give myself the luxury of failure. You see, close to 90% of small businesses go out of business within the first 5 years. I was not about to give myself this crutch, that if things didn't work out I could fall back on that statistic to justify why I didn't succeed. I put everything I had into making it work. I spent my first year making sure everyone in my industry new my name and my company name. I wanted and I achieved 'top of mind' within my specific area. It was tough in those early years, I mean really tough. But I went on to build a very successful business, I mean really successful. I was able to sell that business for a very respectful amount in that industry, something that others struggle to do.

Walt Disney said "While the worriers are worrying, the planners are planning and the accountants are figuring out why we can't afford it, I'm busy getting it started." I am sure you would agree that he was an extremely successful person, who knew the value of making the decision to get started and was not afraid of work.

It's important to understand that success can be learned, we are not born successful and we know it’s not just for a chosen few.

Any human behavior expert will agree that most people operate at only a small percentage of their true potential. As a result, they realize only a small percentage of their potential success. You've probably heard this yourself.

Through personal and professional performance development, it is possible to increase your successes, and in turn, your quality of life.

For instance:

- When you focus on developing and growing your business, your income grows.

- When you work smarter and not harder, you can accomplish more in less time.

- If you have more free time you can spend it with your family and friends, in turn your relationships blossom.

-Now you can start to focus on your health and fitness, and improvements are not far behind.

- As a result, your self esteem and your self confidence will increase.

You can obviously see how this cycle repeats itself and the results start compounding. This is Performance Development.

Toss that around in your head for a bit and you’ll agree with me that by focusing on improvements in one area of your life you can, and surely will, see improvements in other areas of your life as well.

A few years ago I decided to spend more time focusing on my own personal and professional development than I ever had before. I attended more seminars. I took more courses and certifications. I invested in my own professional Coach. I was able to take off more time with my family than I ever had before. We even bought a cottage on the Northumberland Strait in Nova Scotia and we spend
a great deal of time there throughout the summer and fall each year.

All of this was done during normal revenue generating time in my business yet I was still able to significantly increase my business revenues.

I think you will agree with me when I say that performance development makes a huge difference in both your personal and professional lives. Let's not forget that none of this has to be complex but can be very simple. Consistent tasks performed over time add up to positive results in your personal life or business.

On the road to success we must repeatedly do things that motivate us and create an impact. On going support is also necessary because it is what drives us to keep moving forward. To grow and to do those things we may not have done because we just didn't feel like it, or were uncomfortable doing.

Don't let procrastination, hesitation or fear stop you from improving your life and hold you back from your success.

Make the decision to start improving your personal and professional lives. Decide right now, that you are going to do what it takes to grow personally. Get excited about taking your business or your career to a new level.

Make a commitment to continuous learning. Spend at least one hour every day doing something that nurtures your heart and nourishes your mind.

To your success...

Author's Bio: 

David Mason is president of Mason Performance Development Inc., a Speaker, Trainer, Performance Development Coach and internationally best-selling author.

Find out more about David and how he can improve your results at

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