5 Proven Habits to Create Success in Business and in Life

Intentionally follow these five tenants of success, and see where it leads you.

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By Trevor Cowley

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

While habits are repeated behaviors, beliefs are repeated thoughts. Mastering both are critical to your success as an entrepreneur. By consistently engaging in beliefs and habits that support your goals and values, you can fulfill your potential and achieve your goals — whether that be in your finances and career, or in your personal development and relationships. Here are five proven habits to shape your mindset and create success:

1. Know what your moral compass points toward

In today's world, it's common to see people getting their beliefs and sense of self-worth from social media, the opinions of other people or the numbers in their bank account instead of how they show up in the world. They put too much value on what other people think of them. They don't have a concrete sense of their morals. These people are indecisive, they don't trust themselves, and they are easily swayed in their thoughts and beliefs.

Having a clear understanding of your principles will make you stand out in a room of entrepreneurs for multiple reasons. Understanding your moral compass helps you increase your sense of self, including your strengths and weaknesses, and it helps you understand how to leverage those for the benefit of your business. Knowing your values will help you make strategic decisions about your company, and each of these decisions will help you stay on track with your vision.

Whoever engages with you and your business will know your guiding morals and how that differentiates you from the competition. It's going to help you attract like-minded individuals, whether that's other business leaders, employees or even investors. Having clarity with your moral compass is one of the foundational ways to build a strong level of trust between you and your stakeholders.

Related: 11 Simple Steps for Building Habits That Guarantee Success

2. Show up with enthusiasm

Successful people are enthusiastic about what they do. If you don't feel enthusiasm in your life, start experimenting with things that will excite you. It doesn't matter how you start — pick anything to incorporate into daily life that you feel enthusiasm for. That might be reading, going to the gym or investing time and money in hobbies or classes that spark that sense of eagerness in your life.

No matter what you're doing, challenge yourself to seek enthusiastic environments and build relationships with other enthusiastic individuals. Once you're in that mindset, practice sitting in that feeling of enjoyment. That enthusiasm will gain momentum, which will seep into other parts of your life — including your entrepreneurship mindset and business growth.

3. Walk with purpose

It's crucial for you to identify what you want in life and define your purpose. No matter how long it takes or the price, successful people will do whatever is needed to fulfill that purpose. Clarify your major goals, and then identify smaller goals that help you get there, like rungs on a ladder to reach the top.

People without purpose take the path of least resistance. They shy away from doing difficult things, having difficult conversations or anything that takes true effort. The actions that take true effort are what actually scratch the surface of creating a better life for yourself. Finding your purpose and refining a plan to get there, especially when it includes doing those difficult things, is what will lead to exponential growth and success in any aspect of your life.

Related: 8 Proven Habits for Ultimate Success

4. Have faith in yourself and your abilities

Those who are at the pinnacle of their success have one thing in common: They don't depend on external validation. They trust themselves and don't let fear into the equation of their decision-making. People who have faith in their abilities and principles don't crucify others who disagree with them or those who don't see their vision, because they don't need their approval in the first place.

On this journey to success, you will second-guess yourself. Prepare to be misunderstood, especially when everyone is going in a completely different direction. You will have to learn how to operate alone, and with critique, even if it means not being accepted by others. When that happens, remember to celebrate your wins, no matter how big or small. Every win serves as a mile marker on the path to your goal and reinforces your unwavering belief in yourself and your capabilities.

5. Focus only on what matters to you

Your attention always has to be directed somewhere. The question is, what will you focus your attention on? Will you focus your attention on ideas and mindsets that will make your environment better or worse? Don't waste your attention on things that don't matter. Don't waste your attention on negative information that distracts you from overcoming hurdles or reaching goals that you know you have the potential for.

This rule of being intentional with your attention applies to your personal and business relationships, too. Be direct in your interactions, and cut to the chase. This will not only save you time and money, but it will improve your communication and avoid potential conflicts down the road. Focusing the entirety of your attention on what really matters (your health, your self-improvement, your family, your employees and your business) will move the needle to become a better version of yourself.

What are you doing to make today's ceiling tomorrow's floor? Practicing these habits and holding true to your beliefs will mold you to be a person who is productive, confident and self-disciplined. This will lay a solid foundation for you to reach financial stability and grow your company. You already have the potential and the gifts to reach your definition of success. It's a matter of doing whatever you need to do — and paying the price you need to pay — to act upon that potential.

Related: 9 Habits of Super Successful People and What You Can Learn From Them

Trevor Cowley

Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor


Trevor Cowley is a 38-year-old serial entrepreneur, investor, writer, and podcaster. He’s a co-owner in 5 businesses that collectively produce over eight figures. He co-hosts a top 100 business podcast on iTunes called Real Business Owners. Trevor is committed to helping entrepreneurs succeed.

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5 Proven Habits to Create Success in Business and in Life

Intentionally follow these five tenants of success, and see where it leads you.