successLuck is for a mature person. Don’t believe it? Ask any profession poker player, they do not play with the hope that they get lucky and get the right cards, they learn everything they can about the game. They learn the odds, they learn the tells, they learn the timing, but they do not count on luck.

Ask any highly successful business person if they built their business on luck, and they are likely to start laughing. Highly successful people invest a lot in learning, trying, failing, fixing, failing and trying again. They pay their dues with long days, short nights, but they do not wait for luck to come along and tap them on their shoulder and say: “Congrats, here is what you have been looking for to be successful.”

Real success leaves a path, you can follow it if you like but it is not an easy trail to follow, there are markers but you will find that it is an uphill, brambly path. Here are some markers that you will find that successful people leave behind for you to follow

1. They never stop learning about a variety of things in a variety of ways – this one makes me want to bang my head against the wall when I am working with business owners. Business owners feel they are too busy being busy and don’t have time to learn. When they do, they only want to learn how to do what they do. Few even have a budget for personal and professional development.

2. They take time to think – do you take time out of your day, your week, your month to think?

a.     Reflective Thinking – reflect back on your day, your week, your month. Think about all the things that you have done.

b.     Strategic Thinking – time to strategize how you are going to meet your goals for your business.

c.      Future Thinking – time to develop what you want your business and life to look like 5 years from now.

How much time do you spend reflecting on what you have achieved, what you want to achieve and how you are going to achieve it.  Keep a journal, write your thoughts and review it regularly.

3. They don’t make excuses, they take responsibility.  Think about any of the most successful people you know, they do not make excuses, they take full responsibility for everything that happens in their business and their lives. You can make excuses or you can create success but you cannot do both.

4. They build teams and they give credit to the team – no one does it alone and good teams are not found by luck, they develop a skill for people and they learn how to develop future leaders.

5. They develop and maintain strong relationships – Ask any successful person and you will learn that one of the most important things they have is their networks. They invest time in their network, rather than running around to meet new people they spend time strengthening their network.

6. They take time to take care of themselves – ask successful people what they do to stay fit and healthy. Tired, sick, run down people cannot stay in the race for success. They have a fitness routine, from running to working out in the gym. They do not leave their health to luck.

All of this is simple stuff, easy to do, easy not to do. The difference between the highly successful and the average business person is simply this, they are willing to do what others are not willing to do. They create and follow the habits of success.