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What Habits do Successful People Follow?

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Baskar Sundaram

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The best way to bring about a personal change in life that is long-lasting is by developing better habits. Habits are an extension of our character and personality and by adopting better habits we can bring about a fundamental change within ourselves. 

Our outlook and attitude are also important aspects of habit formation. That is why we should change our perspective and align it with more universal concepts. Base your personal views on important principles like fairness, honesty, and integrity. 

Keep these views in mind as you read on about the habits followed by successful people. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. By incorporating the habits of highly efficient people you are stepping closer to success and prosperity in both personal and professional life. 

Reflect and Respond 

Human beings are blessed with the power of thinking. When things happen around us or to us we have the ability to think and act accordingly. Yet most of us only react and never think proactively. 

People who react to circumstances often blamed others and feel helpless. They feel that everything is beyond their control. But people, who respond and think proactively, take accountability for their actions and seek solutions. 

Challenge yourself every day to think proactively. When you face an issue, think for solutions. Always remember that you are reaction is the problem. Learn to exercise your freedom in responding and you will flourish. 


You must always visualise before starting a task. Always imagine the final product inside your head and then start working on the project. Take the time to visualise and work in the right direction rather than being unsure and wasting time and resources. 

Personal Mission 

Develop a personal mission and goal for yourself that you will live by. It should be guiding compass in your life that will help you make decisions and even determine your actions. Your mission can be a balance between family and work or even be based on societal and political happenings around you. So take your time and build a mission statement that will guide you throughout life. 


Most people are confused about how they can implement and follow their mission statement in life. You can start by simply living it. Typically tasks can be divided into four categories, urgent and important tasks, important but not urgent tasks, urgent but not important tasks and finally tasks that are neither important nor urgent. Focus on important and not urgent tasks in life. People spend a large amount of time focusing on urgent and important tasks and never focus on other aspects of life. Understand that in the long run, these important tasks like writing a mission statement, planning for the future will be more effective. 

Not a Competition 

Most people into meetings and conversations hoping to win and wanting to win. But understand that life is not a competition where you should be the only winner. Instead, look at situations as a way to build a relationship and reap long term benefits. Develop a win-win strategy for both the parties involved. Next time you want a deal, think of the other party and what they will consider as a win and consider your ideal win, then discuss and come to a mutual agreement. 

Building Relationships 

Building long-lasting relationships with others take time, effort and goodwill. You need to look for win-win solutions, be empathetic, stick to promises you made and most importantly, always listen. Try to understand the other person and what they consider important. Communication is also important and always be clear about what you seek and want. Never break promises and bad mouth a person. Maintain their trust and loyalty. If at all you need to do something that might damage the relationship, be honest with them and always apologise for your mistakes. 

Empathetic Listener 

Try to understand first before offering advice and solution. Empathetic listening is a skill that you should develop to truly understand the people other around. A conversation involves both verbal and non-verbal cues and an empathic listener will observe and understand the various emotions and body language of the speaker. Do not just listen to the words spoken and try and think from the speaker’s perspective.


Synergy is when many people contribute but the end value exceeds more than the combined contributions. Synergising starts with listening and understanding the people around you. See your interactions with others as a way to connect and put yourself in their shoes. Think of the people in your life that you find quite difficult to communicate or discuss things with and find out why you feel so. Then think of a possible solution. 


Caring for your mental, physical, emotional, social and spiritual health is equally important. Take time out for yourself and focus on your wellbeing. This will only improve your effectiveness and efficiency. Stay physically fit by exercising and eating healthy. Be mentally healthy by reading books and staying away from unnecessary distractions. Maintain your spiritual health by meditating and reflecting on your norms and values. Stay socially and emotionally healthy by understanding others and building strong relationships. Pick out activities belonging to each of these factions and focus on them regularly. 

Keep all these points in mind and base your habits and activities around them. This will lead to a more fruitful life. 

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