There are two types of people in this world. Those who make it and those who don’t.
Those individuals who don’t make it like to blame outside forces for their failures. However, I’ve found that everyone fails at something. Michael Jordan, for example, didn’t make it into his high school basketball team. So, if everyone fails, why do some people reach the top and others don’t? Are some people better than others? Nope. Surprisingly the difference between the Queen Bee and the working bees lies in the small details.
Successful people don’t reach success by chance. They aren’t wired to be successful. They just want it more. And they have these simple habits that make all the difference. Here are three examples of habits we can learn from some of the world’s biggest power players:
1. Denzel Washington Continues to Take Acting Classes
As Drake mentioned in a 2013 MTV documentary, Drake: Better Than Good Enough, “Who the hell is going to teach Denzel how to act?” That was also my first thought when I heard this, but it made me redefine his success. Yes, he is recognized for his amazing skills in front of the camera and track record in the big screen, but talent alone did not get Denzel to where he is. Perseverance did. As our success grows, many times we get arrogant. We start to believe we have all the answers. However, Denzel is living prove that humility and the understanding that there is always room for improvement can break barriers and take you further than you ever imagined. If someone can teach Denzel how to act, then don’t think that no one can teach you a thing or two.
2. Oprah Never Eats Alone
In a blog post by Paul Benson, 20 Successful Habits I Learned Working for Two Billionaires, he discusses what he learned through his time working for Oprah and Enver. What stood out to me the most in this list was the habit of never eating dinner alone. Dinnertime is a way to keep alive the lost art of communication. In this technology era it is important to put down your iPhone and pick someone’s brain for a change. There is a lot of information to soak up from conversation. As Benson puts it, “power players get their information from the source (other power players) directly.” So make it a habit to keep company. Befriend smart, ambitious people and simply have dinner together.
3. Bill Clinton Pays Attention
It sounds easy enough, but with our iPhone and tablets we have lost the ability to give others our undivided attention. Kate White, editor in chief of Cosmopolitan, confesses in her book, You On Top: Smart, Sexy Skills Every Woman Needs to Set the World on Fire, that Bill Clinton may be the most charming and charismatic man she has ever met and this has everything to do with his strong eye contact. Intrigued by this, I decided to Google the words “Bill Clinton eye contact” and the amount of articles that came up were unreal. Michael Ellsberg, who has spent years studying interpersonal persuasion and language (spoken and unspoken), was able to word it beautifully. He calls Clinton’s charm a “Reality Distortion Field” and he describes this as “an aura of charisma, confidence and persuasion, in which people report it almost impossible to avoid surrendering to the man and following his will when interacting face-to-face.” In other words, people melt in his presence. This, among many other achievements, got him to the white house. Can you imagine something so minor as looking at someone in the eye and paying attention giving you all the power you ever dreamed of?