I love it when things are broken down to their simplest, clearest essence, don’t you? That’s why I was wondering if I could break down what it takes to be successful in just a few words.  Just the very essence of what it takes to find success in whatever you choose to do.

So I came to the following conclusion concerning success…

I believe the consistent, planned achievement of success can be boiled down to doing just 4 things:

  1. Committing to Your Goal
  2. Setting Up Your Step-by-Step Plan for Reaching That Goal
  3. Taking Action EVERY Day
  4. And Then Letting Go of The Outcome

That’s it. No matter what your aspirations are, I believe if you simply and consistently do those four things, you will be successful. Let’s take a look at these in order.

First, you’ve got to have a goal. You can’t get to your destination if you don’t know what your destination is – how would you know when you’ve arrived? So you’ve got to choose a goal, preferable one that makes your heart beat a little faster and puts a smile on your face just thinking about it. You’ve got to be able to see yourself having achieved that goal. You’ve got to feel it, believe it and live it even before you take the first step towards achieving it.

But having the goal is not enough – you’ve also got to be COMMITTED to achieving that goal. This means a complete willingness to do whatever it takes in terms of time, focus, effort and priority. You’ve got to be determined, not just at the beginning, but all the way through until you achieve your goal.

Second, you need a step-by-step plan for reaching your goal. It’s one thing to say you’re going to become a millionaire – it’s an entirely different thing to actually have a workable plan that will get you there. Chance won’t take you there. Sitting and wishing won’t take you there. Only by following your plan can you arrive at your destination.

And while it’s true there will be roadblocks and detours along the way, you will also find serendipitous good fortune as well, the kind that places the right person at the right time by your side to help you. So have a plan, but be open to changes in that plan. And never take your eyes off the goal.

Third, you’ve got to take action every day. EVERY day. So many people get the first two right, but they fail to follow through. Their first downfall may come as soon as they’ve set the goal and made the plan, because now they feel they’ve achieved something and can take a rest. Not true. Having a goal and creating a plan are the steps you take PRIOR to achievement – they are not achievements themselves.

So the moment you create your plan, take an action step. And then each day there after, do not go to bed until you have taken another step. Even if it’s late and you’re tired, do SOMETHING to get yourself closer to your goal.

Fourth, you’ve got to let go of the outcome. This sounds contrary, doesn’t it? Certainly it’s the most difficult step of the four to understand. But if you are desperate to achieve your goal, you will actually self-sabotage and push that goal further away from you, rather than drawing it closer.

Determination is one thing, desperation is another. Determination allows you to take calm, continuous action. But if you are desperate, you are moving out of focused action and into emotional reaction.

How do you know if you are desperate? If you have thoughts such as, “I can’t be happy without this,” or “I can’t be successful if I don’t achieve this,” then you are desperate. You are telling yourself that you cannot be happy or successful in the present because you have not achieved those things.

The remedy? Letting go of the outcome and instead focusing on being excited and enthusiastic about not just the goal, but also the process itself. When you feel motivated and invigorated, you can easily visualize your goal coming to pass. This stimulates positive brain chemistry that focuses your conscious creation of your goal. Not to mention it just plain feels good and gives you all the energy you need to work on achieving your goal every single day.

You might benefit from these tips on how to take action while you’re letting go of your attachment:

  1. Get rid of the negative thinking. When you catch yourself thinking negative thoughts, find something positive to replace them with.
  1. Stop negative emotions. When you catch yourself feeling down, find something to feel positive about. In addition, move your body. This might be jumping up and down, doing stretches or walking. Physical activity helps to banish negative emotions and makes you feel empowered.
  1. Take pleasure in the process. Rather than viewing the journey to your goal as a burden, think of it as a pleasure in its own right.
  1. Be the best ‘you’ possible. In all that you do, be honest and never let go of your integrity or do anything that would tarnish your good name. Success achieved at the expense of your honor is a hollow success at best.
  1. Banish doubt and self-criticism. You can’t be happy or successful if you don’t believe in yourself and your abilities. The best way to boost self-confidence? By taking action everyday towards achieving your goal, and taking note of all the small victories and accomplishments along the way.
  1. Affirm yourself several times a day. Acknowledge your talents, your skills, your strengths and capabilities. Know that you deserve success.
  1. Be the person you want to be – NOW. How will you feel when your dreams come true? Start feeling that way today. What kind of person will you be when you achieve your goals? Be that person right now.

There you have it – success in four easy steps. And no matter what you want to accomplish, this mini road map can take you there.

Learn it, live it and love it, and it will be yours forever. Imagine that – the key to achieving anything you want, right here before you.

One last thing – some of you are saying to yourselves, “But I’ve heard this before.” I wouldn’t be surprised if you have. But the issue isn’t whether or not you’ve heard it – the issue is whether or not you are LIVING it.

So tell me – are you? If not, I’d like to suggest the following…

Make a commitment to yourself right here and now that you will memorize these four steps and immediately put them into action.  Commit to yourself that you will spend every day for the next 30 days using these steps to achieve a goal that you really want.