It's always a good time to assess your personal success strategies and perform a tune-up if it's needed. Here are seven personal success strategies to evaluate over the next few weeks and make moves to tune-up your performance if you find it lacking.

1. Understand your Distinctive Talents

Evaluate your talents, paying particular attention to make sure you understand your distinctive talents. Your distinctive talents are those at which you excel and continually improve. They bring you the most energy and clearly benefit others. After identifying your distinctive talents, use them in as many work and personal situations as possible to maximize your positive impact and personal success.

2. Tune Out Negative News

I used to wake up to talk radio with all its negative news and listen to it until arriving at work. That was until seeing Ed Foreman who asked why anyone would fill themselves full of negative news to start the day. After hearing this advice from Ed Foreman, I awake to upbeat music, avoid the newspaper in favor of uplifting reading, do quick creative tasks, go to Church, and listen to energizing music or positive spiritual messages in the car. The result is a more positive attitude overall.

3. Create a Mental Break

Maybe you are feeling greater pressure to achieve goals. You can compensate for greater pressure by figuring out what mind-filling tasks you can eliminate to create a mental break. Get up earlier and start the day so you aren’t running behind. Stop reading a redundant industry magazine. Set a slightly earlier time to leave work. Consciously live below your means. These and other ideas can help reduce self-induced pressure and create a mental break for yourself.

4. Stop Thinking so Much about Yourself

Go out of your way to serve others – at work and in personal life. Instead of turning inward, stop thinking so much about yourself and increasingly reach out to others. Apply your distinctive talents to help others be more successful in their challenges. This may seem counter-intuitive, but I’d rather be known for contributing to a lot of other peoples’ successes than simply focusing on my own.

5. Be a Joy to Be Around

Smile, laugh, cheer people up. As tempting as it may be to go into a cocoon when things seem challenging, don’t do it. Be a joy to be around. Offer a reliable source of calm and enjoyment, bringing comfort and light-hearted moments to others. Find whatever works with your personality. For me that’s wearing orange socks (that have become my trademark), even when I don’t feel like bright colors and seeking out humor and fun to share with others.

6. Be Visible

Use your talents to be visible outside your company. If your talent is speaking, develop content and present to local organizations and universities. If it’s writing, submit articles to publications looking for content or start a blog on your expertise. If you’re good at building, cooking, or other essential skills, volunteer in your community. Make sure you’re using talents to help others and expand your network.

7. Work Out

Exercise and I were never good friends until my wife signed us up at a nearby health club and arranged for me to work with a trainer. I’d done cardio before, lost a little weight, but it never had a major impact. Working with a trainer brought new focus, helped relieve stress through exercise, and resulted in losing 30 pounds.

Also check out this great Harvard Business Review article on bringing more value to your job. And best wishes for successfully incorporating these personal success strategies in the days and weeks ahead! - Mike Brown


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