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By Sherrie Campbell

 Seize every opportunity to fulfill your dreams.

When you think of working hard for what you want, does that thought carry a deeply unexpressed negative vibe of dread, or are your thoughts of succeeding soaked in desire?

If you want to be successful you must dream, yearn, want and, most importantly, you must consistently be in pursuit. Success is not just about money; it is about grinding for what you want, it’s about having the heart to grab the dream you envision in your mind.

Success will always bring unexpected challenges and obstacles. How willing are you to face and overcome these challenges? Who you are, standing face-to-face with obstacles, defines the depth of your character, and it’s your character that defines how successful you will or will not become.

1. Grit
The greatest successes are not always the most talented. So, who are they? They are the hard workers, the committed, the involved, the inspired and the vocal. Striving for success must come from your guts; from the pure desire to live your dream. Your desire to succeed must be so deep that you hold no other option in your mind as a viable choice.

To be ranked amongst the elite, you have to make the decision to be the chooser of your own destiny. There is no reason you cannot reach and experience your highest potential. If you want to be successful, you have to dig deep, and refuse to get in the way of your own success. You must allow your hard work to dispel all self-doubt. When you feel “purposed” in this life you will be more than willing to wake up early, stay late, and pursue, pursue, pursue because you absolutely cannot imagine living your life in any other way than to live it doing what you love.

2. Observe
If you want success, start observing everyone around you. To compete with the best-of-the-best, you must watch, learn, observe and emulate what other successful people do, and take notes on why other less successful people are where they are. Emulate the attitude you see successful people carry.

Observe their body language, eye contact, speech, handshake, smile, listening skills, work ethic, the schedules they keep, the sacrifices they make, where and how they gain their skills and knowledge, how they treat other people, what books they read or talk about, and how they stay fit in mind and body. They more you observe the qualities you admire in other successful people, the more you can shape your success-path around what you observe to be a winning formula. In reality, the path to success has already been laid out for you by those before you; take advantage.

3. Focused
It is easy to become distracted by the outside world. Succeeding is never an easy upward jaunt. Succeeding at anything requires a daily commitment. Each day is a new day that will bring its own unique challenges, pressures and irritating details. You can either lose focus and let those things drop you into a negative mindset, or you can turn these negatives to positives, increase your focus and commit to staying in the channel of success.

If you lose focus, take a minute to regroup. Regrouping increases your capacity to sustain forward moving progress. To stay in the channel of success, focus on solutions, not problems. Keep grinding. Make sure each challenge you face makes you stronger.

4. Contribute
Success is never a one-man job. To be great, you must bring people up with you, and have people above to guide you. The more you contribute to the success of others, the more you succeed, and the greater a reputation you develop.

You must be unselfish. Your job is to know what your role is and to give that role everything you’ve got. The next step is to gift the knowledge you gain from performing your role to others. Invest in the grind with the intention of making yourself and everyone around you better. Success is a team sport. The better and more successfully you work with others, the brighter your future. You must change your mindset from an “I” to a “we.”

5. No excuses
Success boils down to a simple formula: If you do the little things right, the small things will fall into place. There is no excuse to point your finger at other people for the things you did not do, or for the success you have yet to achieve. Success comes down to effort, not excuses.

If you want to succeed, then do it. It’s that simple. If you experience a setback acknowledge it, change it and move forward as a smarter and wiser person. Be gracious and humble. No one likes an entitled blamer. Transmute any itch you feel to complain into the desire to get back onto the playing field and slay whatever was standing in your way. Effort is the most composed and effective way to recover from a mistake.

6. Keep moving
To be successful you must hold the mindset that learning never stops, the dream never stops, and the ground never stops. You’ve got to keep moving. You’ve got to bring your own energy into the game, and not count on others to supply you with what you need to keep going.

Each day that your eyes open is an opportunity for you to improve and take your success one step further. You’ve got to dig deep and hold the vision of what you want at the forefront of your mind. Movement is everything. If you stop, progress stops. If you give up, you just killed your dream. Access your inner strength, and champion for the results you want.

7. Stand out
To stand out on a roster of other successful individuals, you’ve got to bring your best effort every single day. You want your character to represent how tirelessly you’re willing to work to perfect your craft, how willing you are to risk getting out of your comfort zone, how coachable you are, how much time you’re willing to put in, and how willing you are to put certain leisure’s aside to take advantage of every moment that gets you closer to your goal; knowing that once you’re there, you can pick your leisure’s up again.

You’ve got to sacrifice. Do not make sacrifice a dirty word full of negative associations. When you love what you do, there is nothing negative about the word sacrifice; it is the armor you wear that represents how much pride you have in what you’re aiming for.

8. Faith
The journey to success is extraordinary. It’s a real-life drama, where each day you’re given the opportunity to fulfill your dreams. Each day is an opportunity to be grateful for the passion, commitment and abundance your success brings. There is nothing more fulfilling than pursuing the goals that wake you up in the morning. It takes deep belief, commitment and a tremendous amount of faith to keep going. If you don’t give up, even in the face of unexpected detours or losses, you will find the light at the end of the tunnel. Hard work and faith are your soldiers. If you feel both of these to depths of your bones, you cannot lose.