When It’s Time to Be Serious, Be Serious

Principle #20 – When It’s Time to Be Serious, Be Serious

One thing that separates the successful from those who have not yet experience success is the ability to become very serious when it is important. Many of us simply cannot do this. Instead, faced with real problem that is potentially unsolvable, we use humor, procrastination, or some other device to shy away from the problem. But if you want to be truly successful, you must learn to get serious when it’s time to be serious.

Principle #21 – Seize the Moment

Another important quality that the successful have is their ability to seize the moment. When they see an opportunity in arm’s length and they know that it’s real, they take it. They don’t debate it for a month until it is too late.

Principle #22 – Don’t Just Learn – Apply

When it comes to business, “learning” isn’t enough. In business, learning is only as valuable as the return it generates. This is why you must get in the habit of learning new things—and then applying them immediately.

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Principle #23 – Take Time to Think About Important Decisions

Most people agree that “analysis paralysis” is a bad thing. However, when it comes to making decisions, we often err too far on one side or the other. Sometimes, we take far too long; and, other times, we don’t take long enough.

Instead of deliberating carefully, forming an opinion, and then acting, we often either jump to a conclusion or waste endless days thinking about the subject. In the end, our interests are better served by making the decision fast, but doing so based on sound information.

Principle #24 – Avoid the Grandiose

Creativity is important, but when it is excessive, it can lead to grandiosity. The successful know that being grandiose is not useful. Rather, it is simply a form of day-dreaming that does not translate into practical and reasonable set of steps you can take to improve your situation.

 Principle #25 – Think in Terms of Problems and Solutions

Those who are successful in most of their endeavors see the world in terms of problems and solutions. That is, as soon as they hit a bump in the road, they go into problem-solving mode, rather than going into problem-avoidance mode or panicking.

Principle #26 – Delegate Tasks to Others

If you ever want to match the success of some of your heroes, you will need to learn how to delegate tasks to others. Often, the most important trait that makes people successful is that they are willing and able to break down and a large task; and efficiently and intelligently allocate its pieces to employees.

Principle #27 – Correct Your Weaknesses

Another important trait of the successful is their ability to identify and correct weaknesses. For instance, if they recognize that they are particularly weak at decision-making, then they will make an effort to become decisive, rather than wallowing in self-loathing or anger about their problem.

Principle #28 – Don’t Let Emotions Get the Best of You

Emotions can be an important driver of success. They can keep you focused on a goal; and they can give you the willpower to go on, even when things start to look bleak.

Unfortunately, emotions can also play a deeply negative role when it comes to running a business. They can coax you into making irrational, vindictive, and poorly thought-out choices. So, don’t let your emotions get the best of you, but do let them push you on towards success.

Principle #29 – Be Humble and Honest

Two additional traits that many successful individuals share are humility and honesty. In particular, when someone says something that they know is wrong, they point it out. And when they don’t know whether or not they are correct, they allow others to speak or correct them.