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6 Damaging Habits of Unsuccessful People You Don’t Want to Copy

life tips 6 damaging habits of unsuccessful people you dont want to copy lifestyle

We all have habits—quirks and routines that make us unique and human. Unfortunately, they come in both the good and the bad. Some we pick up as we grow older, while some have been with us since childhood. Be it positive or negative, these habits have a profound effect on our productivity, and ultimately on our careers.

Read more: 6 Simple but Effective Habits of Self-Made Millionaires

We’re here to help you spot habits you should consider laying to rest. That’s not to say that having one or two make you a failure. After all, there are levels to this: some are more damaging than others and some are harder—if not almost impossible—to avoid. If you’re wondering what’s taking you so long to become successful, you might be suspect to some of these habits derailing you in the pursuit of your dreams.

They are jealous of others’ success


Probably the hardest-hitting on the list, we’ve all been guilty of at some point. Comparing yourself to others when you see them winning the game of life as you stumble day-to-day could lead to feelings of bitterness and unwarranted inadequacy.

To avoid this unnecessary burden on your psyche, it’s best to focus on the things that you’re good at and then build from there. List down your skills and how you can maximize them as you navigate your career. Most importantly, avoid looking at other people as competition! Try to analyze why and how they were successful, and take the opportunity to learn as much as possible.

They don’t take risks


On the topic of development, unsuccessful people seem to be unwelcoming of change. They’ve grown so accustomed to their routines that a slight deviation from the norm causes them a great deal of stress. Being close-minded could stem from a bad experience, from fear of the unknown, or from a feeling of superiority—“this is how we do things here” or “it was much better back then”.

Comfort zones exist because we want them to. We seek out what’s real and tangible, and question things that are unfamiliar. This is perfectly normal behavior, but refusing to bend the other way when needed is detrimental to both you and your colleagues. Start small by trying new things. Learn to accept that change is constant, and that learning about things you don’t know doesn’t reduce your worth. In fact, it could only increase it.

They don’t take criticism well


Let’s get this out of the way. No one likes to be called out. But getting called out and refusing to own up to your mistakes doesn’t make you strong. It only shows weakness and how naive you still are. Unsuccessful people breeze through life wishing that no one would notice their shortcomings.
 
Acknowledging what you did wrong and taking steps to correct it is the mark of a true adult. When you see criticism as a means of improvement, you not only earn the respect of your colleagues, you gain self-respect as well.

They cram


No matter the industry, we are all familiar with deadlines. They’ve been a staple in our lives since childhood, and we’ve grown to love them and hate them. The Mañana Habit, or taking comfort in the indefinite future, is something Filipinos are known for. Give someone a deadline of a month and they’d probably start work ¾ into the month and rush to finish it on the last day.
 
When putting things on hold, make sure that you’re using the time doing something valuable or of higher priority. The stress and regretful realization that you should’ve done it earlier as you gulp that third cup of (crammer) coffee isn’t worth it. As the cliche goes: Work hard first and enjoy when it’s done.

They let emotions take over


“I should treat myself after all that work”, or perhaps “I deserve this”, are just some of the whispering thoughts after an especially taxing day. Unsuccessful people are bad at managing cash flow. One reason is that they let their emotions take the wheel when it comes to spending.

Blindly spending with emotion leads to an expensive habit of compensating negativity with the short-lived happiness of material things. Needless to say, you should always try to clear your head before making a new purchase. Wait it out or—better yet—sleep on it. Before making a purchase, ask yourself again and again: Is it something you really need?

They conform


Suppress our individuality to blend in or to seek someone’s approval is a trap most unsuccessful people fall for. True, it does feel good when you share the same interests with someone, but changing who you are to fit only cripples your most distinct advantage.

By conforming, you unconsciously rob the world of the things you could share – things only you know how to do. These could be ideas bubbling inside your head that will never see the light of day. Who knows? These ideas could be the seeds of the next new startup.

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