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How to Succeed and How Not to Fail

How to Succeed and How Not to Fail

How to Succeed and How Not to Fail

You've heard it said that, "Everything happens for a reason".

That is true. There is a reason for everything, including success and failure.

There are reasons why a person fails. The reasons are usually a combination of the following:

  1. They only made a half-hearted attempt, because they did not really expect to succeed.
  2. They were using the wrong method, or ideas.
  3. They did not prepare properly.
  4. They did not have support from the people around them.

Let us say a few words on each.

Making only a half-hearted attempt because they did not really expect to succeed.

Many people don't really expect to succeed.

They don't expect to succeed because, in the past they have not succeeded.

They use the past to justify their belief that their chances this time are not good, and they have the horrible feeling that they are probably wasting their time trying.

As a result of this belief that they "are onto a loser", they only put in 75% effort.

Because they don't give it their full 100% effort, they are beaten by a person who did.

They lose again, and next time around they are even more sure of a bad result; so, they invest only 73% effort, and consequently, are beaten again by a competitor who did give it 100%.

Many people put in half-hearted attempts and then, wonder why they never win.

The solution to the problem of lack of 100% effort, is "Give it 100% effort".

Using the wrong method.

As you know, not every idea is a good idea. Not all methods are viable. Not everything is true. The world is full of fake news, false claims and bad ideas.

If you pick up a wrong-headed idea and use it as your guide to action, then you will inevitably fail.

Therefore, it is vital that you develop your critical thinking skills. You need to be able to discern;

  • Good people from bad.
  • Truth from falsehood.
  • Valid reasoning from erroneous.
  • Facts from fake news.
  • Right methods from wrong.

Being wrong is a great way to fail. Being right is the surest way to succeed.

Learn the laws of logic and apply them to every issue.

Develop your powers of reasoning.

Quote from Thomas Jefferson: "Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion."

Lack of proper preparation.

Many people don't prepare themselves properly.

Everything you do, you would do better if you were better prepared. From travelling to a holiday destination, to attending a job interview, to taking an exam: you will do it better if you are well prepared.

Preparation means, making ready before the event.

Practice. Rehearse. Organise and pre-empt.

Those people who succeed are those who engage in a process of superior preparation. Those who fail, probably failed because their preparation was incomplete.

The solution to the problem of "a lack of preparation" is, "better preparation".

Lack of support from the people around you.

We are affected by the people around us. We can put people into three sets.

  1. Those who encourage and help you.
  2. Those who don't encourage and don't help you.
  3. Those who DISCOURAGE and HINDER you.

Unfortunately, you may have some people who don't encourage you, and there may be those who actively discourage you.

As a person who wants to succeed, your task is to seek the company of those people who will actively help and encourage you.

Remember that your mind is influenced by other people. So be picky about the people with whom you spend your time.

Keep away from those people who discourage you.

Keep the company of people who will help you to achieve worthwhile goals.


In order to succeed please ensure that you:

  1. Believe that success is possible for you, too.
  2. Give it 100% of your best effort.
  3. Think everything through logically.
  4. Base your actions on a rational evaluation of all the available evidence.
  5. Prepare, prepare and prepare again. Make ready in advance of the event.
  6. Stay away from those people who you find discouraging.
  7. Surround yourself with positive people.

Do these things and I guarantee that you will succeed more often.

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About the Author: Chris Farmer


Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

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