When it comes to achieving success in life, there are 3 categories of people; those who know they are successful, those who think they are successful, and those who want to be successful. Where do you belong? I guess it all comes down to how you define the word success. What does success mean to you? Thousands of books have been written about success, which is what all human beings aspire to. I want to share with you 3 essential ingredients in living a successful life, regardless of what success means to you.
The first ingredient is good health. It is said that “your health is your greatest wealth”, and I strongly agree with the statement. There are 2 simple things you can do to attain and maintain a good health:
- Regular physical exercise: Easier said than done. You don’t have to go to the gym. Early morning or evening walks, when consistent and over long periods of time, will create amazing results. Start small, go walk tonight with a loved one. If you already go to the gym, consider hiring a personal trainer and take your health from good to great.
- Good eating habit: We all love food but just like with anything else, food can cause more harm than good to us when not used with moderation. Ironically, when I was preparing this presentation, it was about 11pm and I had a bowl of ice cream next to my computer. That is a good example of what not to do. Try to eat 3 times per day, at regular intervals, and avoid junk food as much as possible.
The second ingredient is good relationships. The quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives. It is easy to take for granted the people we are closest to. Even though technology helps, it is still very challenging to allocate time for building strong or new relationships. When that is the case, focus on your inner circles: family, colleagues, closest friends, etc… For men who are married, the most important gift you can give your children is to love their mother. The same applies to women.
My parents have been married for 30 years now. I have lived with them until I was 19 years old and during those 19 years. I have never heard my mum or dad say “I love you”, but I have seen every possible manifestation of love in their relationship. That brings us to the last item, on my list of 3 ingredients to live a successful life: communication.
There is a popular saying: your life goes where your mouth leads you. But like we just saw with my parent’s story, communication is not limited to what we say. According to a Wikipedia article, communication is the exchange of thoughts, messages, or information, as by speech, visuals, signals, writing, or behavior.
Communication can be written or spoken and includes listening. It is not an accident that great leaders are great communicators. According to research by Professor Albert Mehrabian, a UCLA Professor, words we use account for 7% of our overall message, the tone of voice accounts for 38%, and 55% is body language.
How good is your health? Do you feel good about yourself and how you look? Do you think you could do better? How many quality relationships do you have and if not many, what action steps can you take to change that? Who do you need to spend more time with? Communication is more about what you do than what you say. Your actions do speak louder than your words. No matter how successful you already are in any of the areas I shared with you today, I believe you can do better as the largest room in the world is the room for improvement.