When following a course of action, just a fraction of second before, we can think about our plan like seeing a screen in front of our eyes. This technique allows us to anticipate and preview our actions in the future, and even predict an outcome. So, if we see ourselves following an effective behavior, the situation will likely yield very positive results, and we will have the option to actively live the experience as we have envisioned it. If, instead, we flood our thoughts with negative images or ideas of inadequacy, and we anticipate a negative outcome, we will surely fail. Automatically, we all forge expectations, i.e., we make predictions about the outcome of our actions. That screen that appears to us in our mind, at the moment of doing something, may be perfectly based on repeating a positive phrase: “I’ll win”, “I’ll succeed”, “I’ll overcome this”, and so on. This way, there are high chances that our subconscious observes such positive statement and make us behave accordingly. By contrast, many people in front of an obstacle insist on repeating to themselves: “I can’t”, and so they are not able to overcome their problems. Think positive, right now: you can. Optimism is very powerful.
The same goes for those who sometimes have to make a decision and torment themselves by repeating: “I don’t want to make a wrong decision.” In this sentence the subconscious perceive the word “wrong” and sends the person an anxious response. On the contrary, a person who says: “I want to make the best decision” is thinking a lot better. “I want to make the best decision” is a sentence which contains only positive terms, and these terms will reach the depths of the subconscious, and the positive resources and capabilities will be readily activated.
Therefore, if a person has positive expectations, speak and think positively, they anticipate a satisfactory result and choose the appropriate action to achieve their goals. They believe that they can achieve their goals, and they will achieve them. However, if a person has negative expectations, he will choose not to act in favor of his goals because he does not believe that his actions are able to lead him to positive consequences. These reflections allow us to glimpse the influence of expectations in our lives and to intuit how different can be the life of a person with respect to another, depending on whether they tend to anticipate positive or negative consequences. Then, we have to anticipate positive consequences, and we also should keep being positive when talking to others, when thinking, when planning our projects.
Positive anything is better than negative nothing – Elbert Hubbard
A positive attitude allows successful people to form clear ideas and to live in the security that stems from positiveness. Nevertheless, the most awesome trait of these successful people is precisely the clarity of their ideas: they know exactly what they want and what they do not want, regardless of whether they are in a restaurant reading a menu, or if they have to make important decisions involving large sums of money for investment. These are people who know what they want, but not in the wrong sense: they don’t like to brag about their safety. What they have is well-defined goals, and clear projects for their lives. And this can be considered the first step towards success. The key to being a successful person is to have clear goals.
Setting clear, realistic goals is just the first step. There are two additional factors that influence the likelihood of success:
- The ability to correct our actions and thoughts. Being able to correct our actions and thoughts amounts essentially to flexibility, i.e., the ability to adapt. Further, remember that adaptation is one shade of intelligence. Thereby, if we have clearly identified goals, and we supplement them with good correction capabilities, we will be able to pursue our goals despite their changes.
- Perseverance: We have to try, and try and try. Set goals, adapt to changes, and keep going forward. That’s the cornerstone for success. Success stems from sustained effort.
We are endowed with mechanisms for success, i.e., we have abilities and capacities to achieve success. Some people use these mechanisms, and others not. Follow a positive attitude for activating such mechanisms.
P.S. Do you want to keep reading about the traits of successful people? Then you might want to take a look at 15 Qualities of Successful Leaders.