8 differences between successful and unsuccessful people you should know

Interestingly, the choices of habits picked can still be avoided if they are bad with success-sabotaging tendencies.

Certain tendencies can thwart or propel ones dream of success and these tendencies can be seen as habits that differentiate successful people from the unsuccessful ones.

While some grew up adapting to habits that have been dragging them down in life and in their career, others have been the blazing trail for their successful habits.

Sadly some of the unsuccessful people, as well as the successful people, picked up one or two bad habits that they have refused to let go.


Here are the eight differences between successful and unsuccessful people you should know:

Forging ahead and undaunting

Several successful people are known to have consistently refused to be defined by their failures. According to a report by Inc., success is a net positive outcome that always includes an abundance of failure, experimentation, and learning. Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote had his stocks listed as one of the worst performing in the Nigerian Stock Market but that didn’t deter him from forging ahead to seal a franchise deal with Peugeot automobile.

In the contrast, unsuccessful people are quickly deterred and worn out after failing. This, in turn, leaves them enveloped by their failures and keep them from forging ahead. Rather than seek solutions to move ahead of their failure, the unsuccessful people keep wallowing in their failure and fail to move on.

Taking responsibilities not passing blames


Successful people remain undaunting and at every opportunity, they are quick to express their mistakes when they falter - because inevitably the most brilliant successes will falter. The successful people own failures in other to show that it is cool to fail but better and best to learn from it so it never re-occurs. This trait in successful people engenders trust while demonstrating that failure is not something to be hidden neither should blame be passed with every failure.

There is no record of an unsuccessful individual, who takes responsibilities when the buck stops at their tables. Unsuccessful people rather find it cool and best to pass the blame and remain neutral so as not to be perceived as the failure or the weakest link in the chain.

Wavering during crisis

The ability to keep one’s head in a firestorm has been described as one of the greatest determinants of success. Hence, successful people do not lose their sense of purpose or direction in a crisis. This is not only a winning streak but this attitude creates a reliable compass setting for those around them.


Unsuccessful people are quick to tremble during a crisis. They can’t hold their heads up high and face the situation with logical reasoning, rather they are quick to lower their guards and gaze and give in to the crisis.

Getting a treat

Most successful people have a way of giving themselves a treat. This is because successful people understand that when you're running at full throttle, you need to take time to get a treat. However, what successful people take as treat vary. To treat themselves, successful people may get as simple as a short meditation or a full-on workout. Sometimes, successful just indulge themselves in, getaway or a philanthropic contribution.

All these are uncommon with unsuccessful people, who rather than slow down to get reinvigorated while running at full throttle, they keep on working till they break down and run out of ideas. They don’t see it coming and rather than avoid burnout, they work right into it. Most unsuccessful people attribute funds to getting a treat.

Letting go of the past


Successful people are quick to let the past remain in the past. Successful people don't hold onto to the past neither do they do they hold grudges which could be as a result of holding on to past. Successful people believe the latest mistake will only slow them down. These set of people learn from the past fast and move on to a bigger challenge.

Most unsuccessful people stick to the past, hence holding on to more burden and worries. These set of people are anchored by the past. They can’t learn from the past fast and move on to a bigger challenge because they are still stuck with their past. They hold grudges to the detriment of their valuable time and energy. In an article for Web MD, Mike Fillon cited one Hope College study that found that holding a grudge can even have negative health effects.

The Competition

Successful people enjoy competing either with themselves or someone they admire their success abilities and strength. A lot of successful people have a deeply rooted competitive streak. Being successful is fundamentally about needing to win, though the reasons vary. However, the determination doesn't vary in competition because it forms the yardstick for success.

Unsuccessful people shy away from competition. They don’t mind losing and don’t bother looking into the reason for the loss. While successful people are obsessed with creative ways to get a leg up on their competition, unsuccessful people cannot be bothered. Unknown to unsuccessful people, the competitive drive to do more than anyone else in pursuit of dreams paves the pathway to success.


Sifting hypocrisy from commendations

Successful people are hardly moved by hypocrisy or individuals who are set to lick their arses to seek their favour. Successful individuals know that almost everyone around them laughs when they throw up dry jokes. When successful people achieve a feat, many people shower them with accolades and encomiums but they maintain the balance and avoid allowing such to get to their heads.

On the other hand, unsuccessful people enjoy hypocrisy, they love arse lickers. With just a bit of commendation and accolade, unsuccessful individual feel that is the height and nothing can be better than their current position. While successful people realize that agreement does not constitute infallibility, unsuccessful people fail to.

Being conscious of their time

Every successful individual from Warren Buffett to Bill Gates and Aliko Dangote consistently say the time is precious, hence, it must be judiciously spent. The realisation of how precious time makes successful people defend their schedule vigorously.


Unsuccessful people fail to realise how precious the time is and rarely defend their schedule to accommodate what can be ignored or designated. This hinders the unsuccessful people from juggling numerous obligations. Unsuccessful individuals allow their time to be eaten up because they get roped into plans that don't interest them, laze around and regret it because the consistently miss out on the one thing they really wanted to do.


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