10 Things To Give Up If You Want To Be Successful in Business and Life

You realize what is important by knowing what to give up


Thilina Fonseka

2 years ago | 5 min read

Photo by Ankush Minda on Unsplash

You realize what is important by knowing what to give up

Give up procrastination

You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today ~Abraham Lincoln

The most important things are not urgent but accounts to more than 80% of our goals. If we do not keep working on them daily to make progress, they become urgent soon.

Once they become urgent, we do not have the time it takes to make it yield the potential outcome once it could.

Stop procrastination. Start doing. Today. Right now.

Give up fear of failure

The only thing that lies between success and you is the fear of failure.

There is no single successful person who didn’t fail. They took risks. They made bold decisions and most importantly they failed. All because they didn’t fear failure.

People who do not fear failure, act fast, fail fast and learn fast. Those failures teach lessons for life.

The more you fail, the more you learn. The more you learn, higher the possibility of not making mistakes. Less mistakes, less failures and more successful you would be.

Do not shy away from making mistakes. Embrace them. Keep learning and keep moving, forward!

Give up settling for less

Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it ~ Steve Jobs

Successful people don’t settle for less. They aim for the greatest. They shoot for the moon.

In fact, often they don’t settle at all. They keep pushing themselves to be better and greater all the time. This is the differentiator.

Don’t be afraid to set big, hairy and audacious goals. Others may call it crazy, but you could become the person who gets it done if you are bold enough to chase it.

Think BIG. Do BIG. Be BIG.

Give up taking short term success for granted

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There ~ Marshall Goldsmith

Success is a journey, not a destination

What brought you to today, won’t take you to tomorrow. It takes what it takes to get to a successful tomorrow.

Celebrate the quick wins but never take it for granted. You still need to work if you need to win again.

You still need to take risks, make bold decisions and avoid procrastination if you want to win gain.

Give up shallow work

Being busy doesn’t mean being productive

We spend hours on Social media, Emails, Meetings, Internet browsing, etc…. Before we know it, the day is gone and we piled another empty day.

Success doesn’t come from the shallow work. It’s a result of deep work. Deep work produces the value the success needs.

Forget the rest and focus only on what matters the most today, right now.

Remember your big, hairy and audacious goal. Remember why you started to chase it at the first place. Remember that every hour spent on shallow work pushes you away from achieving it.

P.S — Spending quality time with family and friends is deep work too. It’s the most important deep work one could ever do.

Give up working for money

“A Computer for the rest of us” was Steve jobs’ vision. Apple’s primary goal was and is to build great products. Products that customers love. It was not building profitable products though Apple ended up being profitable.

At the time of his death, Steve Jobs’ net worth was more than $10billion. It’s evident that having a greater goal than making money worked out.

So, work to learn, improve, inspire and to build something greater than yourself.

Goal should not be to make money, as money is one of the many results of success. Money will always follow.

Give up trying to be perfect

Not a single person, company, product or a service will ever be perfect.

This is a universal truth. They always will have areas of improvements. In fact, why do you think we have our jobs, performance evaluations, product/service feedback surveys, reviews and many other practices? It’s to improve continuously.

Imagine why Apple releases an iPhone every year even when there is nothing much changed from the previous. They don’t try to be perfect but the improve.

They know it doesn’t work trying to be perfect.

We ignore it. We ignore it because we fear that we will fail if we don’t make things perfect.

Successful people START with a “not so great”. The point is not what we start with, but that we start. Once we start, we push to be the best.

Don’t worry about those edges. Don’t worry about that bug in your app. Don’t worry about not having the greatest graphics on your sales pitch. Don’t worry about having a mediocre website design.

Put something good out there first, and push yourself from good to great.

Give up comparing your success with others

Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive who is you-er than you! ~ Dr Seuss

Noone is more successful than you are for success is defined by your own devices.

Each one of us is unique. Remember that.

We have our own ways of doing things. We have our own phase of doing things. We have our own curves and edges. We have our own battles to fight. We all know this.

We all are in a journey. Some started first, some started late. Some had better opportunities and some struggled. Life gives us unique opportunities. The lemon you got, is not the same as what your friend got.

We just can’t judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, can we?.

So, stop comparing with others.

Start competing with yourself. Today, right now.

Give up saying “Yes” to everything

100% of the successful people SAY NO to almost everything. I dare you to change my mind.

When we say yes to shallowness, we SAY NO to what is important.

SAY NO to mindless internet browsing. SAY NO to scrolling up and down on social media. SAY NO to unhealthy food. SAY NO to unhealthy relationships. SAY NO to urgency. SAY NO to mediocre outputs.

Say yes, only if it’s gonna help you reach your goals significantly. Say yes, only if it raises your standards significantly. Say yes, only if they add significant value to your life.

Say yes, only if you can say “HELL YEAH”.

SAY NO to everything else.

Give up “giving up”

Life is short, but the heights it can reach is as high as our minds can be.

The circumstances might be against us. Naysayers might be the only company. Losing our sanity might be on the edge. Nothing might seem to be working.

This is when we should give it one last shot. Only the ones who give it that one last shot, succeed. Period.

Stop complaining about how things are bad. Stop procrastinating because it looks not perfect. Stop wasting your time on shallow work. Beat your fear of failure and give it one last shot.

Give it one last shot!


Created by

Thilina Fonseka








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