Change Your Mindset for Success

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(Last Updated On: May 26, 2019)
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All of us want to succeed but not all of us are willing to do what is required. Sometimes we are on the right track but then we give in to distractions… If this is your situation, then maybe you haven’t yet changed your mindset for success. You may be trying to succeed on your own terms with methods that just don’t work.

Maybe, you are a teacher, a skilled worker, a professional, a musician etc. You may be very competent at what you do, but somehow you may not be contented financially or fulfilled otherwise. With the right attitude and mindset, you can become successful by making some adjustments to the way you think.

Success in any area is hard work, but there is a shorter path we can follow. Isn’t the shortest path between two points a straight line?

You can take advantage of this principle by learning from the mistakes of others, having a clear vision and plan, and by not giving up. You must have a winning attitude and be determined to succeed.

Surround Yourself With Successful People

Who would you prefer to train you if undertaking an exercise program? A plump gym instructor or someone who is ripped like Lebron James? Although they may both be equally qualified to teach, I am pretty sure that you would lean (no pun intended) toward the ripped one. Their appearance is all the proof you need of the sacrifices they have made, and that what they teach, works. Surely, this will be more in alignment with your aspirations.

We all need tons of inspiration because our goals take hard work, and hard work is the #1 reason why we give up. We don’t want to be reminded of any possibility of failure before we even start.

The optical of blaring 6-pack Abs and muscle everywhere constantly reminds us that success is possible. It imprints the intended destination in our minds, i.e. the possibility we could look like our trainer (or role model). It creates the inspiration we need for success.

Visuals are evidence, and evidence fuels our goals. They inspire the faith and hard work necessary for us to press toward the mark – our vision. Surround yourself with successful people but don’t forget the others who helped to get them there. Don’t rule out learning from these two methods below.

# 1. – Learn from anyone who has a track record – experience, knowledge

Can you learn from someone who doesn’t quite “look the part?” Yes, you can. If Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has a history of winning the Mr. Universe title were our current trainer, we wouldn’t be too concerned about how he looked now. His entire life is the result of his glory days as a successful bodybuilder. 

There are also the unsung heroes who prepared him for success throughout his career? Do you know who they are? Don’t they have tons of experience to share?

Some may appear to lack the outward manifestation of “success” but their success is in facilitating someone else’s success. They are an instrumental part of the process.

Then there are individuals who have copied the strategies of the successful and have become successful themselves. Many successful entrepreneurs, professionals, athletes, etc. have become coaches, mentors – examples to many.

# 2. – Learn from the mistakes of others

(Yes, I mentioned it before, but this is key)

We can also learn from the mistakes of others. As a matter of fact, this can also be an important motivating factor. Learning from the mistakes of others can save us a lifetime of waste and reinventing the wheel.

Mistakes help by exposing the paths that do not work and therefore, reveal what to avoid. This will keep us focused and allow us to build on the best-practices others have listed for our benefit. Learning saves loads of time!

Check out one of my favorite quotes:

“You must learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t possibly live long enough to make all of them yourself.” Sam Levenson

There is no success without sacrifice -

There’s No Success Without Sacrifice

I am sure you already know that success comes with a price. Everyone would be successful if this were not so and I would be wasting your time writing this article.

I encourage you to model the success of successful people (or those who are on their way to success) – but more importantly – model the vision, goals, strategies and the hard work of their success plan

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Success Comes in all Shapes and Sizes

Fat man sitting on couch -

It doesn’t matter how that success is packaged. Whether child or adult, big or small, formally educated or not. As long as they have tangible evidence of success, they have something of value to share. This is why we are inspired by mentors irrespective of class, creed, age, nationality, race, culture, ethnicity or skin color.

Building on the Success of Others — Learning By Example

Are you going to listen to someone who sits on their butt all day barking orders or do you prefer to be motivated by example? You are more likely to follow after someone who leads by example and who already has what you want.

To succeed in any business (after first having your plans and objectives in place) your strategy must be to model success by employing best-practices others have already left for us to emulate. It has been substantiated that success is a journey, but I know that the journey can be much shorter if you learn from the mistakes of others by applying their knowledge and insight.

Instead of asking “why are some people more successful,”  learn from their habits, trials, guidelines, ethics and shorten your path.

I personally believe that a winning attitude is already a success story. I also believe that success is a learned behavior. Just listen to the those who list their inspirations and mentors when questioned about the reasons for their success. So yes, success can be scrutinized, documented and leveraged. In every creative work, album, book, design etc. someone is usually listed as an inspiration for its success.


This is the reason why so many have succeeded in every sector. They followed someone who also followed someone else and built upon their success, by following the principles and methods that work. Define what success means to you and go for it. Who are you modeling, what are you learning and who is following you?

“Don’t just work hard – Work smart”

Please share your comments below.

God bless you and yours – and here’s to your success.

Here’s that link about Arnold Swartzenneger I mentioned earlier.

Here is a brilliant and more in-depth article on this topic: It’s called “Unsuccessful People Focus On ‘The Gap.’ Here’s What Successful People Focus On.

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16 Replies to “Change Your Mindset for Success”

  1. There are many excellent points here Dave. You’re right Arnold what’s his name has done the work so even if he isn’t ripped now (I don’t know if he is or not) his reputation precedes him so the person wanting to be successful should listen and learn from him. I also agree there’s no success without sacrifice, either someone sacrificed so that you might succeed or someone will succeed because of you being the forerunner. Learning from other’s knowledge and mistakes both are beneficial. Thank you for sharing

    1. Hi Sheryl!
      Thank you for taking the time to read and for sharing. We can learn so much from others but most times we are too busy trying to learn on our own. I believe if we truly set our minds to learn we could accomplish so much more in much less time.

      Bountiful success to you and yours.

  2. Hey, I really enjoyed this article, it is very informative. I need to try to stay positive and I want to succeed so badly so I try to make sure I never give up. But I become afraid of failure when I don’t see the results I would like. It seems like I am growing really slowly but I keep at it so I can succeed. I know we can keep learning things and that will never change!

    1. Hi Justin. 

      Thanks so much for your thoughts and for taking the time to read. 

      You can do it. Make sure you have a practical personal vision written out. Set some goals that point you toward your vision. I like your attitude re. not giving up. You are growing and that’s important. Don’t overwhelm yourself with how fast that happens at this point.

      Continue to believe in yourself and surround yourself with positive people who can help (a support person if possible). Don’t be afraid to share with them. Others looking on from the outside usually have a clearer picture of what we are doing wrong (and right) and this can be a turning point for you in the right direction.

      I wish you bountiful success but more importantly, first define what success is to you.  


  3. Good morning David
    I agree that the mistakes of others can be used as a great motivating factor. I like how you put it, “Learning from the mistakes of others can save us a lifetime of waste and reinventing the wheel.” Why start all over again when we have the tools right at our fingertips with which to work?
    I have drilled this into my son’s head hundreds of times. “Get into the presence of those who are experienced. They have made lots of mistakes and you can learn from their experiences.” Unfortunately, many will not heed this advice, head rush along their own stubborn path and make mistakes which they could have avoided.
    Although you have applied this concept to success/failure, it can be applied to life in general. It is certainly true that learning saves loads of time. and I will add, learning saves loads of heartaches and problems further on in life.

    1. Hi Sharon!
      Thanks for posting your thoughts. I agree with the advice you give your son. Certainly, there’s much wisdom in this.

      Many let pride get in the way of learning from others. Most times, they think that making mistakes is for losers and that successful people never make them. With a little research, we soon discover that this mindset is so wrong.

      There is no success without failure. When we learn from others, we live “lifetimes” over. Since we don’t have to waste time going down the wrong roads, there is much more time to make good choices and spend the time focusing on the right things.

      Thanks again and all the best.

  4. Hey!

    Great read. 

    I think so many people in this world expect success to be easy and inherently given to them. This mindset leads to lack of ability to work hard, be consistent, experience failure (which is a good thing) and more. 

    I absolutely agree that it is important to gain knowledge from the successful, yet also learn from others mistakes. 

    Learning from mistakes is one of the most memorable lessons an individual can learn. They stick with you, because as someone fails, you see the consequence. You learn from others failures to avoid the same consequence. 

    Again, this was a great read. Thank you for sharing your knowledge. 


    1. Hi Russell!

      Thanks much for taking the time to share. Appreciated. Very well said. I absolutely believe that if we can learn from the mistakes of others, that we can begin to live life the way it was meant to be, to the fullest. 

      Leveraging mistakes can be a gold mine of opportunity for progress and success, and at an accelerated rate. This is a subject that is truly dear to me as looking back, I made my share of mistakes, but one day, I decided to let go of all the frustration and focus on my “successes.” Helping others to learn from my “own” mistakes has turned out to be quite rewarding. 

      To learn, is to be in a state of constantly upgrading oneself, becoming better in every area of life. This evolves into potentially affecting change in others, that would otherwise rob them of experiencing life to the fullest. Life is too precious to be wasted on starting everyday from the beginning. 

      Thanks and all the best to you.


  5. Hi David,

    What a very inspiring post and story of Arnold Schwarzenegger.

    We really need to learn from our mistakes and even from others and move on despite struggles and conflicts.

    Believing in ourselves and our capacity to succeed is the most important thing to consider.

    Start with big goals and chunk these into smaller ones that you can achieve little by little. Before you know it, you’re there and have achieved your dreams.

    Thanks for sharing.


    1. Hi Marita! I like your points. Very well said. You are so right. Thank you for sharing and adding value here. Yes, I particularly like that video of Arnold. How very inspiring?

      All the best and more!

  6. The problem I have is finding mentors or people to look up to who have success, yes, but are also humble. Many times people who rave about their successes are also full of themselves which doesn’t really make them very good teachers. I’m not saying this is true for every success story, but success AND humility is rare.

    1. Hi Alexander!
      Thank you for sharing. Yes, you are quite right. Many seemingly “good” people become warped by success. I have experienced this myself at times. They seem to forget what it was like before they were successful and rather than help sincerely others, “they rave about their success.” I believe that success (financial) reveals what’s inside of a person.

      The good news is that there are still many persons around who are both humble and successful. I believe it’s because they were truly humble at heart before they became successful.

      Well said and thanks again for sharing.

  7. Quite inspiring, thank you so much. Changing mindset is a very big challenge, the most fun part of it is when one  doesn’t realize that there must be a change in his/her mindset. When you know it, there is no problem at all.

    I am talking from my own experience, I have so many devastating things that have done that changed my life to the worst because I didn’t realize what I was doing needed a complete change.

    You are very true when you said, all of us need to succeed but its not all of us who do what is required to succeed.

     I have come to a point where I am learning from my own mistakes in order to succeed.

    I have 2 great takeaways from your article 

    1. Sacrifice 

    2. Never quit 

    Thank yoiu so much for a great article

    1. Hi Ngonidzashe!

      Thanks for taking the time to read and to share. You have made some great points there. You are right. If we don’t acknowledge that we have a wrong mindset then there can be no change. I think this is a problem for most and that’s why so many suffer in this area.

      Ngonidzashe, the important thing is to learn from your mistakes and move forward. You are a survivor. You are still standing.

      Thanks for coming away with some value from this article. I truly wish you well. you are certainly on the right path. Here is an article that you may find interesting my friend…

      Much success to you!

  8. I totally agree that there is no success without sacrifice! Me and my friends decided to go on a healthy and fitness journey, we have been successful so far as all of us have one goal and that is to stay fit all the time. We have different body goals but we inspire each other with trainings and exercises we do on a daily basis. We share healthy recipes too.

  9. Hi there, Kit!
    You better believe it :-). It’s great that you have one common goal even though there are different expectations. We all need support and encouragement to some degree in the pursuit of success. Keep up the good work and thanks much for sharing.

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