The Things Successful People Don't Do

What Successful People Dont Do

Excuses are a dime a dozen, and successful people aren’t.  Do you see the correlation?  Here are the 35 things successful people don’t do (and you better not do, too).

1. Discuss The Struggle…
Unless revealed in the media, reality television, online, or similar, many successful entrepreneurs never expose their struggle! Of course, you can read about all their accolades, countless amount of likes, lifestyle change allotted due to their financial gain-maybe even an entourage, HOWEVER, it is rare for them to share, even avoid, that moment right before all the success hit! That decisive choice to fight against odds. New business venturers want to know they’re not alone, and stand a chance
Thanks to Asha Spacek of UR FEW MEDIA, LLC / UR SUPERMODELS
2. Don’t Get Negative
Successful people don’t allow negativity into their life. The attitude you take is a decision you make. They make a conscious decision to avoid negativity. Specifically negative people, news, and information.
Thanks to John Brubaker of The Sport Of Business, LLC
3. Play Not To Lose
Successful people play to win while others are more interested in simply NOT losing. Not losing doesn’t make you a winner, and to a successful person, anything other than winning is just a variation of losing. That’s not a fun or meaningful way to play.
Thanks to Lorraine Esposito of Peacemaker Coach
4. Hang Out With Complainers
One of the most noticeable things that successful people avoid is complaining. If you think about it, when you complain you just relive the past and any negative consequences are just kicked up to be felt again emotionally. Instead, successful people choose to hang out with others who are positive and who live in the present, and they choose to forgive past wrongs. Complaining don’t pay the bills!
Thanks to Nathalie Lussier of Nathalie Lussier Media Inc.
5. Seek Out The “Easy Way”
Yes, there might be tried and true methods to entrepreneurship, or small business ownership, but that doesn’t always translate into taking the “easy way” towards success. History has shown that the road to reveling in the fruits of labor requires just that; labor, and a lot of it. If you’re seeking out success be prepared to sacrifice, get knocked down and get back up again.
Thanks to Jeremiah Sullivan of Framework Media Strategies
6. Avoid Leadership
One of the key attributes successful people have, is not avoiding leadership. Successful people understand the importance of being a leader of influence and allowing employees to strive through their gifts, talents and abilities. People who work for leaders of influence value the opportunity to support their leader and at the same time develop their leadership skills along the way. Successful people understand the value of leadership, they know it exponentially increases their bottom line.
Thanks to Paul Vann of Wealth Building Academy, LLC
7. Spend Time With Negative People
Most business owners and entrepreneurs I know spend time with liked minded people. They don’t waste their time with people who are not of the same mind-set. Winners hang with winners. If you are a successful business owner you want to surround yourself with successful people. You try to spend as much time with people who are on a higher business level then you so you can learn from and pick their brain. We avoid people who are just talk and no action a waste of time.
8. Multitask
Stay focused on what is most important. The most successful people know how to move swiftly- with focus and flexibility. They get clear on winning or their target, they plan their day around moving towards it, the manage their time based on what gets them there most effectively. They do not try to multi-task (which humans do not do well!). They do not leave too much to chance. They do not allow clutter and distractions to dictate where they spend their time and energy.
Thanks to Holly Green of The Human Factor, Inc.
9. Don’t Get Distracted
Focus is key to success. The problem is, you can’t force focus…it’s a process of “letting go.”

Most all you need to let go of anything that’s holding you back or getting in your way. Successful people let go of negativity, detractors and unproductive activities.

Let go- and what’s left is the clear path to success!

Thanks to Jim Bouchard of THINK Like A BLACK BELT
10. Don’t Waste Your Time/cut Your Losses
It’s inevitable – all people realize at some point that a formerly beneficial business relationship isn’t working any more, or that a prospective business relationship isn’t as attractive as it seemed at first glance. Successful people don’t fall into the trap of assuming/hoping that “things will work out”. Unless they see a clear path to success, they end the relationship or avoid getting involved in a relationship in the first place. This frees up their time to pursue better opportunities.
Thanks to Scott Swanay of Sherpa Social Media
11. Don’t Follow The Herd
Successful people are innovative – they don’t follow the crowd or merely copy what others are doing. A successful business leader looks for innovative solutions to problems and finds creative ways to grow their business. This innovative approach to business makes the company a leader in its market and gives it an edge over the competition.
Thanks to Steve Sponseller of Innovatoin Strategies, Inc.
12. Skip Out On Health
I see it over and over again. Many people avoid making their own health a priority, but the most successful don’t. Sacrificing your health while focusing on business success is pointless if your health starts to deteriorate and you can’t work anyway. This needs to be a bigger priority for business professionals.
Thanks to Terri Brown of The Travel Academy LLC
13. Don’t Be Unbalanced
Success is one thing, but balance is the true key. Being a driven person is wonderful, but the understanding that your mind and body are indeed the vehicle that drives you forward is key to truly having a happy life. Cars need oil changes to run smoothly and the human mind and body needs and “oil change” as well to keep the tires moving toward new ventures. No time to relax? then a pothole will surely pop up sometime soon. Make time and your body and mind ( and wallet) will thank you.
Thanks to Brian Collins of Life In Synergy
14. Don’t Make Excuses!
In order to be successful, you must make yourself accountable. Each day I give myself 6 goals to accomplish that day, and I DON’T make any excuses – I just get them done!
Thanks to Jenna Drew of Pure Simple Organic
15. Skip Decisions
Successful people make decisions in a timely manner. Those who don’t succeed delay decision making, allowing choices to pile up like unopened mail.
Thanks to Rachel Z Cornell of
16. Negative People
Successful people avoid spending time around negative thinkers. People who are down on life or like to focus on why they can’t do things are a huge emotional draw. Becoming successful is already hard enough without having people sucking you down. Instead focus on surrounding yourself with positive and like-minded individuals.
Thanks to Shelly Cone of Beach Betty Creative
Every great entrepreneur who ever started a successful company has one trait in common. They never avoided taking risks and playing it safe. This is pretty much true in every case. Successful people do NOT play it safe. Successful people do not avoid risks. They use their passion and drive to tackle any new venture with all it’s inherent risks and uncertainties head on. Anything short of that would be unthinkable in their drive to bring their creation to life.
Thanks to Craig Wolfe of CelebriDucks
18. Worry About What Others Think
Successful people are confident people. They know the importance of creating a plan, taking action on that plan and being prepared to alter the plan if necessary. They are good listeners. They seek out as much information as possible from others. With the information compiled, they process it and take action from their gut. They take responsibility for their decisions. Successful people do not worry about what others think about them – only what they think about themselves.
Thanks to Vicki Donlan of VickiDonlan
19. Suffer Over Mistakes
I have found people often equate success with the absence of mistakes. In fact, successful people make lots of mistakes! What they don’t do is suffer over the fact that a mistake was made or the consequences. Instead, they accept responsibility, learn from what went right until it didn’t, correct what can be corrected and MOVE ON! Successful people don’t waste time wringing their hands, blaming others or suffering!
Thanks to Susan Bender Phelps of Odyssey Mentoring & Leadership
20. Gossip
Successful people don’t listen to gossip. They value other people’s input and advice, but make their own decisions. They don’t let nay-sayers get in their way. They do their homework and make strategic decisions based on facts. They don’t let the “grumpies” ruin their day.
Thanks to Gayle Carson of Carson Research Center
21. Never Stop Learning
Successful people never assume that they know it all. They continue to learn and to advance their knowledge base of their product, service and industry. In today’s ever-changing world, successful people know that education and continual learning is the key to staying on top. Whether it be through attending industry conferences, webinars, trade shows, training sessions or reading articles & blogs, successful people never stop learning. Thought leaders do just that – they LEAD with their thoughts.
Thanks to Karen Emanuelson of Reciprocate LLC
22. Hang Out In Crowds
Conventional wisdom yields conventional results. Hanging out in a crowd constantly is usually a recipe for mediocrity. Remarkably successful people will often do what other people don’t want to do. They go where others won’t go because there’s a lot less competition and a much larger chance for success.
Thanks to Tony Elliott of Bathroom And Kitchen Remodeling Pros
23. Have A Light Work Load
Almost ever extremely successful business owner that I know, from personal experience, works more hours than the average office worker–a lot more in most cases. They have long to-do lists of projects they want to get done. So they have to put in lots of time. Better yet, they want to put in lots of time and that’s what makes the difference.
Thanks to Tommy Anthony of Custom Kitchen Remodelers
24. Drama
From my viewpoint, people I would call successful, seem to avoid “Drama.” The hyped up, time wasting, worries and attacks that just muddy the water and prevent a clear vision. (Then again, I’m not much into “Reality Shows,” the worst example of “Drama.”)
Thanks to Monica Tombers of Just So! Jewelry
25. Change The Industry
My experience as a publisher has taught me that in order to succeed the maxim don’t give up is true. But what that rather broad idea really means is you have to be able to read the signs in your industry and pursue those avenues that will make not just your individual company but your industry a better place to work. If you don’t give up leading the way, encouraging others to do similar things and work collaboratively, you will create industrial successs, not just personal success.
Thanks to Deborah Emin of Sullivan Street Press
26. Spray And Pray
Successful people do not spray their actions all over the place and then pray that something will stick. Rather, within the cups of success for successful people there is crystal clear clarity; a vision of where they want to be; a flexible plan on how to get there; dynamic actions steps allowing for exceptional execution; consistent demonstration of positive core values (business ethics) and an internal commitment to do whatever necessary to achieve success.
Thanks to Leanne Hoagland-Smith of ADVANCED SYSTEMS
27. Ignore Success
Deepak Chopra said “Pursue excellence, ignore success”. I think this sums up the way that successful people act better than anything I have heard elsewhere. Successful people don’t get wrapped up in how good they are, they just continue to keep working to improve themselves. If you work towards this quote, there really is little that can hold you back.
Thanks to Jeffrey Cumro of Better Life Chiropractic & Wellness, LLC
28. Successful People Do Not Work Alone
I have yet to see a succesful entrepreneur work completely alone. Successful people never work alone, they always surround them selves with other people that will help them reach their goals by tapping into their skills and minds.
Thanks to Edwin Soler of Libreria Berea
29. Catastrophize Negative Outcomes
When bad things happen to successful people, they don’t dwell on it or allow it to prevent them from moving forward in life. They certainly don’t give up! They simply analyze the situation, determine what went wrong, and bear the mistakes in mind as they follow an alternative plan of action. Life’s too short to allow negativity to drag you down.
Thanks to Mark McLaughlin of Results Marketing
30. Avoid Conflict, Seek Peace
Successful people avoid conflict. As Abraham Lincoln said, “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. (1st Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861)

Lincoln talks about appealing to the better angels of our nature. We should do this in all relationships, be it personal, business, sports clubs, while driving. It doesn’t matter the circumstance.

Thanks to Pamela Hawley of UniversalGiving
31. Waste Time!
Waste time! I have a simple success formula: “You get what anybody gets – you get a lifetime.” Succesful people maximize opportunity and advantage; and both are happening every day, all around you. The trick, and its an easy one – don’t spend your time, talent and resources on soul-sucking, time-wasting, focus-blurring people or projects.
Thanks to Steven Foster of Foster+Fathom
32. Get It Right The First Time
Successful people don’t usually get it right the first time. That’s with anything they do or “try”. They also don’t quit. The problem is that most of the time, we only see people’s “highlight reels” and we don’t see all the failures that of course don’t make the highlight reel.
Thanks to Michael LeJeune of Michael LeJeune Worldwide
33. Negative People
Successful people are careful about whom they spend time with. They avoid people who spread pessimism or who eat up time unproductively. They avoid people who bring out the worst in themselves and distract them from their goals.
Thanks to David Leonhardt of The Happy Guy Marketing
34. Extended Vacations
Taking much deserved time off to rejuvenate, giving vigor and vim to one’s own creativity, mental state and business is one thing many successful people avoid. It’s the fear that an important opportunity will be missed while being away from their business. That includes taking an extended vacation from the workplace.
Thanks to Greg Jenkins of Bravo Productions
35. Don’t Waste My Time
Successful people are more organized. They know how to delegate or outsource help when needed. They do not like for their time to be wasted. They expect people around them to be efficient in their time and actions to achieve their duties or goals. If you do waste time on a continual basis where the successful person is concerned; then you will be the first one out the door.
Thanks to Carol Coots of Practical Cost Reduction


12 thoughts on “The Things Successful People Don't Do”

  1. This was really redundant and half the time the items were ‘do this’ and half the time they were ‘don’t do this’ although the title is ‘things successful people don’t do’.
    I guess this comment makes me a negative person, which 28 of the 30 items said was a bad thing, but it was definitely a waste of time, which is on the list too.
    I suggest we take this opportunity to admit a mistake and move on, that’s on there, too.

  2. I am not sure I could be any more confused with this list. It is meant to be a list of things successful people don’t do, so people don’t do negative people? They don’t don’t waste your time, so they actually waste your time?
    I guess writing confusing blog posts is something that successful people do.

  3. I am really sorry to say this, but this post needs to be edited. If your post title it’s: Things
    successful people don’t do, then the items can’t start with “don’t”.
    Like number 2 Don’t get negative, it should be just “Get Negative” so it reads: successful
    people don’t… get negative. At the moment it reads successful people don’t…
    don’t get negative.
    Yes, I know I will get the idea once I read the full text, but it makes it really difficult to read
    quickly, especially since English is not my first language.
    Otherwise it was really interesting!

    1. Thanks for point that out Alexa. This list was not edited and was a direct post from our community. Clearly it is not a good idea, since the good content is getting lost among the typos and errors. Future posts won’t be like that.

  4. Many of the items on the list where repetitive, successful people do not like redundancy. Since I read the entire list I must not be successful, unless I would fall under toe one on the list successful people are always learning. Please accept the point or proofing the posts

  5. I think this post needs to be edited. It does contain several points that might confuse the readers. But the crux of the post is real-good. The person who contributed has the magnanimity to give credit to various sources / person for several points. I appreciate it.

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