The #1 habit for any success!

Yes, there really is a No. 1 success factor.

Before I explain it to you in more detail, I would like to clarify something: Each of us is 100% successful ... or read differently, consequence-rich! Unfortunately, we have become accustomed in the linguistic usage to equate "successful" with material success, and therefore many think too easily that they are not successful if they do not have something.

Everything in the universe is based on the law of cause and effect. And depending on which causes we set, we get a corresponding effect. Or as the saying goes: As you call into the forest, so it sounds out.

If we are not mindful enough, then we do not perceive the connections and often look for the solution externally, i.e. at the effect, but not at the cause. So the No. 1 success factor must have something to do with setting the cause.

So often it is said that success has many fathers. Of course, there are many factors that play a role. In Formula 1, it's not enough just to have a good car. Tire quality, the driver, the perfect pit stop, everything has an impact.

Tim S. Grover was a coach for the legendary Michael Jordan and other top athletes. In his book Relentless - From Good to Unstoppable, he lists 13 factors. He numbers them 1st, 1st, 1st, etc. to make it clear that there should be no rating for success factors. None is more important than others.

I think that's a very good idea. As already written in the Formula 1 example, you can't let a lot of things slide and then only do one area well.

Nevertheless, I will now explain to you what is important and must be adhered to - from my many years of experience, for myself and my clients and team members, to generate above-average success.

I have been studying success since the age of 15 and ask myself: Why do some people do so well and others don't get ahead? This study probably never ends, because life still offers so much.

When I look back on my life so far, I can only be very, very grateful: Use of private planes, my penthouse in Gibraltar, travel around the world to the best resorts, friends and meetings with significant and often very wise people. I feel very blessed to have experienced all of this. And, of course, to have learned even more about what profound success really is.

And after all the 50+ years of searching and experience, there is still one most important factor for me, the #1 factor for success.

Four behaviors of the most successful people

In a moment, I will reveal to you what I consider #1 and why I came to this conclusion. Before that, here are 4 important behaviors that characterize the most successful people I know.

  1. They have a basic attitude that says, "What needs to be done, needs to be done!" Personal preferences do not play a role. Once they have decided on a result, then what is necessary for it is done. No excuses, no matter how good, how honorable they may sound.
  2. Hence follows the habit of tackling the most unpleasant first. It is not only procrastination that is to be avoided, but rather the energy. On the unpleasant sits an energy that can cause fear, promotes avoidance and thus contradicts point 1. If something unpleasant is postponed, it still ties up a lot of energy. And the energy should be used 100% for the goal. And it strengthens the self-esteem if one is not afraid of unpleasant actions or conversations.
  3. Just as every pilot has a checklist of what to check, the successful ones also have a list of what should be accomplished in a day. And before the workday ends, they go through this list. If something is still open, it gets done, no matter how late it is. If it can't be done, it has to be carried forward to the next day. But it's the habit of not wanting to put anything off, not wanting to forget anything, wanting to get everything done, wanting to have an above-average level of productivity.
  4. This brings us to the 20:80 rule: With 20% of your time you achieve 80% of your success. With 20% of your actions you achieve 80% of your success. The successful are very aware of this and concentrate first on the 20% of the tasks that already bring 80% of the success and do not let themselves be distracted by this. It distinguishes the successful ones that they know their 20% actions. Not just working off anything. Not simply working long hours. Not just rushing through something with pressure, not just working hard.

The No. 1 factor

I put the 4 points in front to make it very clear why I consider this factor to be the most important. We have all probably heard of time management. But there is no such thing as time management, the very word is misleading. You cannot manage time. You can only manage yourself and your activities. That's a huge difference, especially when it comes to self-programming. Hence the checklists, the 20:80 focus, and the focus on "What is it that really needs to be done?" And here comes the big difference! About 97% of the working population is busy, working off to-do lists. You're supposed to manage activities, you may be thinking. Yes, you are, but which ones? Good questions lead to deciding which activities to do!

With myself and again and again with my clients, cochees I experience it that the old ego only allows questions that do not bring about real changes. Here is the main bottleneck. You have to find out what the real desired outcome is. And that can sometimes take time. It may require paradigm shifts, inner prohibitions must be dissolved and new habits established. Then we also get into action. But not with a classic to-do list that has to be worked through, but with a list of desired results. Thus, there are no to-do lists in our team. Only lists like: What is the desired result today; the desired result for the week; the desired result of this project, this conversation, this telephone call.

The understanding that time cannot be managed but only used, the knowledge of the real desired result (which is sometimes better achieved by doing nothing), the focus on not having idle time (e.g. "Never go empty-handed") and having consistent intention and action on the desired result, lead in the long run to a new habit that integrates the above four points and brings them into the subconscious. Then they are habits that are executed without hesitation and as a matter of course. Just habits! And so the causes are set, which then show effect. Which cause that the desired result with probability bordering on certainty (typical lawyer formulation) arrives.

There is a lot in this point. In our mastermind groups, we repeatedly achieve above-average results with it. Results that an old habitual ego could not imagine.

Therefore, we first clarify the main life goal and the real life vision, so that it is clear what the ever decreasing life time should be exchanged for and thus create power teams and for all involved a very fulfilling and also materially successful life.

After 50 years of studying success, trying out these concepts, allow me to say there is this #1 success factor. Focus on it especially. Surround yourself with people who consistently support you on your way.

Simon Sinek says: Work with people who also believe what you believe. I add: Work with people who have the same values and also want to develop further. Just somehow getting through to the grave can't be the point. Not wanting to be seen means putting your own light under a bushel and is like suicide.

Sustainable success is based on this important habit. And that's why I like to say: Success is just a habit. And a habit is in the subconscious. You reel off the action, without much effort, with ease, like all your routines in life.

I wish you an extraordinary life according to your choice!


Wolfgang Sonnenburg
Exponential Consulting & Advanced Leadership


ps. If you would like to know more about how we can get you to where you really want to be, click on the following link and write us briefly about your interest. We'll be happy to talk about how the masterminds work together to achieve their individual goals. You already know that you have a much greater potential than you are living. There is so much more in it. And you can! Together we bridge the gap from where you are today to where you really want to go. Is it leadership or just a better relationship with yourself and others or great business success? My partners and I have decades of experience and success of our own and are sure to get you there. Write to us and we will explain to you how it works.

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