The Cycle of Success

The Cycle of Success
Roger Staubach February 1, 2008

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If you’re like me, you want to be a success. Nothing feels better than to face a world of challenge and to triumph by finding the best within you.

The basic challenge is the same for you and me: to be as much as you can be. Get the most from the gifts you are given, and enjoy the fruits of a life well-lived. Success has no secrets. The main principles have been well known for years. But how often have you vowed to live more productively, more successfully—only to get swamped by daily demands?

Four Principles
Whatever your career, whatever your desires, three simple principles of success planning can help you sharpen your aim—and hit your target. They can help you learn what you want, and then link the life you live with the dreams you desire.

1. Set your goals.
To get someplace, know where you’re going. Goals put the
dynamism of deliberate desire into all that you do. Take a few moments at the
start of each day to write what you want to attain. Exactly. Specifically.
Measurably. Goals help to marshal the strength of the mind for three reasons:
goals increase focus, goals crystallize desires, and goals engage the
imaginative power. The aim is to set specific, immeasurable goals.

2. Rank your priorities.
To gain maximum success per minute invested, put first things
first. Priorities keep your energy focused where payoff is greatest. Record your
priorities—those things needed to accomplish your goals—and then rank each task
by priority: urgent, must do today; important, but could wait until tomorrow;
useful, but no immediate hurry.

3. Act on urgent and important matters.
Goals set the direction, but action brings the result. The simplest way to
get the most from each moment is to do what’s most important right then. The
practical formula is to prioritize your activity—rank your tasks by order of
importance—and follow through on those rankings in your daily action.

4. Assess your performance.
To play at your best, keep score every day. A few seconds
of self-assessment let you enjoy your achievements—and upgrade your performance. At the end of the day ask yourself: “Did I wind up where I aimed myself, or did I fizzle, get misdirected, or simply get swamped?” Regular self assessment tightens the use of goals and priorities into a solid success system.

Rating Your Day
Rate your performance daily to assess how well you measure up to your goals.

On-goal rating.
Nothing is more important to success than to stay focused on your goals.

Alertness rating.
Success depends on alertness. If you feel dull and groggy, it’s hard to do anything worthwhile. If you feel bright and alert, everything seems easy and enjoyable.

Achievement rating.
How many of your goals did you achieve? Either you achieve your goals or you don’t. Were you right on goal with a high level of alertness? If you always do your best, goals will take care of themselves over time.

To get an accurate picture, you need to follow all three ratings, and adjust each of them in light of the others. It’s a way to enliven the full range of success.

By merely putting your attention on each of these factors—On-Goal, Alertness, and Achievement—you tend to improve your performance.

Excellence in Action: Schedule regular self-assessment sessions.

Article courtesy of Leadership Excellence.

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