- Thick Skin: you cannot be easily offended or hurt if you want to be successful. There will always be people who are jealous or envious or out to bring someone else down—you must develop a way to see past that and let it roll off your back, like “water off a duck’s back.”
Ducks have feathers that are tight and their density act like oil—it keeps the duck dry and warm. So when water (cold or otherwise) lands on the back of a duck, it simply rolls off. Let criticism roll off your back in a similar manner—because if you are going to be successful, you will have your share of criticism. Count on it.
- Obedience: although this might seem strange to talk about to adults and not children, it is important to consider that in order to be a leader, you must first learn how to obey a leader. You must learn the principle of loyalty to a leader if you want to lead others.
Once you have learned how to obey and to follow directions, you can lead others and understand what commands and orders do for an organization and an individual. Consider this: 175 of the CEOs of Fortune 500 companies are former US Marines, and 27 US Presidents served in the military.
- Courage: bravery is not courage, but you cannot have courage without being brave. Courage is the moral fortitude to stand up for your character (touched on in the last article) and to do the right thing—even in the face of adversity.
When you have courage, you follow through on your vision. It’s on display every day and only the courageous have the ability to get the most out of life. When you have the strength of your conviction, find the courage to put it in to action. You won’t be sorry you did.
- Intolerance: not exactly what you might expect to find in an article about success, but each of us must be intolerant of any number of things: intolerant of abuse, of injustice, of the things that you know are immoral, unethical, or illegal. If there’s anything in this world you should be intolerant of, those are some of them. I hope you are an intolerant person—in the right way.
- Sense of Humor: if you don’t have a sense of humor, you will fall flat on your face and never be someone who succeeds. A good portion of the road we walk to success is filled with blockades and potholes. If you come up against one and go down, you must have the ability to laugh at the situation and yourself. If you don’t, you will be angry and bitter about your misfortune and never move past it. Laugh at yourself and what you run up against and you’ll find your climb to the top is quicker and more enjoyable than you thought it would be.
Pick one of these attributes and work on it for 3 to 5 days. Report back on how you did, how it made you feel, and some of the results that you achieved.