A distillation of interview responses conducted for my book Tales of People Who Get It provides 13 clues that alert you when you are speaking to people who “get it.” These 13 ItnessPoints are critical to successful living for people who want to live a more fulfilled life.

  1. Learn continuously/read voraciously: Learning is an endless process that continues throughout life. Invest in yourself by making personal and professional development a priority. Each year, decide on a learning theme. You could make this commitment for January to December, one birthday to the next, or simply start where you are and make the commitment from today until the end of the next 12 months. Take courses, read broadly, observe and make sure that you look at what has been done before, not reinventing the wheel. Think about how you can apply what you have learned or read to improve your personal and professional life. Use the new information to solve challenges, write articles, teach others what you have learned and create “something.”
  2. Listen and hear: Practice active listening and know the difference between listening and hearing. The ability to listen and hear show others that you care about them and it also allow you to better understand situations and ultimately make better decisions. Focus your attention on what the other person is saying instead of formulating your response to what is being said. People appreciate when they feel like they are being heard, and it is the perfect way to start building a relationship.
  3. Understand that there is a higher purpose and life isn’t just about me: Make sure that you serve others well. And do so while honouring your purpose in life. Ask yourself these three questions about your product or service, all three are important to achieve success:
      • Does it fill a need/add value to or serve others
      • Does it honour my purpose?
      • And, does it make money?
  4. Cultivate relationships/Surround yourself with the “right” people: There is truth to the adage that no one ever succeeds alone. Create a team of people who you can call on when you need advice. Members of your success team should be farther along the path that you are traveling. Your success team is essentially your Board of Mentors, who helps to hold you accountable to your vision and goals.
  5. Refuse to be satisfied with the status quo: Always look for new and innovative ways to do things, and find creative ways to solve problems, perhaps by blending ideas. Reinvent yourself, push your boundaries and do the unexpected. Mediocrity breeds more mediocrity and greatness breeds more greatness.
  6. Think deeply and differently: Teachers in high school were on to something when they told us to put our thinking caps on. Most people operate by automatic pilot each day, doing the same things over and over again. How can individuals expect to get different results if they do not change their actions? Before making a decision, practice thinking about the challenge, and looking at both the pros and cons of the situation. Play the scenario planning game to determine what would happen with each scenario. And, experiment by combining different solutions to form something new. This will definitely aid you in thinking deeply and differently.
  7. Adapt to different situations: The only constant today is change. To respond appropriately to changing needs, requires adaptability and agility.
  8. Love and enjoy work and life: To live a truly successful life means living life to the fullest doing the things you love. When was the last time you assessed what makes you happy?
  9. Know Yourself: Get to know yourself, perhaps for the first time. What are your likes and dislikes? Why? What are your strengths and weaknesses? What are you supposed to be doing with your life? Hidden inside of you is a genius just waiting to bust loose, if given the chance.
  10. Recognize vulnerabilities: Benjamin Franklin who wore many hats, tried to achieve perfection, but realized that perfectionism does not exist. We all have weaknesses. Recognize and accept your vulnerabilities and work to minimize them. One way to eliminate vulnerabilities is to partner with people who are strong where you are weak and vice versa.
  11. Take a holistic approach to life: Look at the bigger picture and how you relate to it. How do you fit? What adjustments can you make? Look at all aspects of your life: career, economic, business, relationships, social and so on. Are they working in harmony?
  12. Focus on the task at hand: When you perform different tasks at the same time, you perform none well because you are being pulled in different directions. Look at your to-do list, which is the most important task, the one that will take you where you want to go? Perform that task and strike it off your list. The second most important task now becomes your first. Focus only on the task at hand, the one that will make the most important difference in your life. Follow the 80/20 rule.
  13. Commit and follow through: Do what you say you are going to do when you say you are going to do it. Honour commitments, even the ones you have made to yourself. Let your word be your bond. If you commit to doing a large task, break it into bite-sized pieces, focus on one bite at a time and complete it so that you are never overwhelmed.
  14. If you regularly practice these 13 ItnessPoints you are on your way to living a more fulfilled and successful life.

    Author's Bio: 

    Avil Beckford is a writer and the published author of Tales of People Who Get It and It companion workbook Journey to Getting It. Chief Invisible Mentor, she blogs at http://theinvisiblementor.com where you will find white papers and an ebook. Subscribe to the Invisible Mentor Blog today!