Most people think success comes from good luck or enormous talent, but many successful people achieve their accomplishments in a simpler way: through self-discipline. No Excuses! shows you how you can achieve success in all three major areas of your life, including your personal goals, business and money goals, and overall happiness.
THE COMMON DENOMINATOR OF SUCCESS
Herbert Grey, a businessman, conducted a long-term study searching for what he called ‘the common denominator of success.’ After eleven years, he finally concluded that the common denominator of success was that ‘successful people make a habit of doing the things that unsuccessful people don’t like to do.’
And what were these things?
What Grey found was that successful people are more concerned with ‘pleasing results,’ whereas failures were more concerned about ‘pleasing methods’. Successful, happy people were more concerned with the positive, long-term consequences of their behaviors, whereas unsuccessful people were more concerned with personal enjoyment and immediate gratification.
THE HABIT OF SELF-DISCIPLINE
Fortunately you can develop the habit of self-discipline. The regular practice of disciplining yourself to do what you should do, when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not becomes stronger and stronger as you practice it. You refuse to make excuses.
The development and maintenance of the habit of self-discipline are a lifelong task, an ongoing battle. It never ends. The temptation to follow the path of least resistance and the expediency factor lurk continually in the back of your mind.
Napoleon Hill concluded his bestselling book of the same name by saying that ‘Self-discipline is the master key to riches.’ Self-discipline is the key to self-esteem, self-respect, and personal pride.
- Success is hard work. The indispensable requirement for hard work is self-discipline. Success is possible
- Success is predictable. When you are not working deliberately, consciously, and continuously to do, be, and have those things that constitute success for you, your default mechanism is at work. You end up doing those fun, easy, and low-value things in the short term that lead to frustration, financial worries, and failure in the long term.[/bluebox]
THE DEVELOPMENT OF CHARACTER IS THE GREAT BUSINESS OF LIFE
Your ability to develop a reputation as a person of character and honor is the highest achievement of both social and business life. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, ‘What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear a word that you say.’
The person you are today, your innermost character, is the sum total of all your choices and decisions in life up to this date. Each time you have chosen rightly and acted consistently with the very best that you know, you have strengthened your character and become a better person. The reverse is also true: Each time you have compromised, taken the easy way, or behaved in a manner inconsistent with what you knew to be right, you have weakened your character and softened your personality.
THE GREAT VIRTUES
There are a series of virtues or values that are usually possessed by a person of character. These are courage, compassion, generosity, temperance, persistence, and friendliness, among others.
It is your level of integrity, living in complete truth with yourself and others, that demostrates more than anything else the quality of your character. In a way, integrity is actually the value that guarantees all the other values. When your level of integrity is higher, you are more honest with yourself and more likely to live consistently with all the other values that you admire and respect.
However, it takes tremendeous self-discipline to become a person of character. It takes considerable willpower to always ‘do the right thing’ in every situation. And it takes both self-discipline and willpower to resist the temptation to cut corners, take the easy way, or act for short-term advantage.