If you stroll along the bookshelves of any book store, you will find hundreds of books telling you how to be successful in many, diverse fields. When you analyse what the books are saying, they all point to the ability to maintain an optimistic attitude in the face of difficult and/or challenging circumstances, as well as the ability to self manage/regulate as foundational requirements for success.
For parents and midwives, success means happy healthy mothers and babies. Happy, healthy mothers and babies are more likely when stressors are managed well. The enormous changes that pregnancy can bring can be challenging and lead to feelings of stress and even distress for some people. The reality is that for all of us, stressful reactions involves chemical messengers which can play havoc with our physiology. Anything we can do to learn to manage stressors in our lives well is a vitally important thing to do for our health and wellbeing.
I found this list of qualities of successful people on Lifehack. When I looked at the list, I realised that the qualities I read there were those of midwives I really admired. I also recognised that the women and men who moved into parenting in the most optimal way displayed these qualities. It seemed to me that all of us could use the benefits these qualities bring and that steady, consistent adoption of these qualities in our lives can make our lives really wonderful.
1. They look for and find opportunities where others see nothing.
2. They find lessons while others only see problems.
3. They are solution focused.
4. They consciously and methodically create their own success.
5. They may be fearful, but they are not controlled or limited by fear.
6. They ask the right questions -- the ones which put them in a positive mindset and emotional state.
7. They rarely complain.
8. They don’t blame, and take complete responsibility for their actions and outcomes.
9. They always find a way to maximize their potential, and use what they have effectively.
10. They are busy, productive and proactive.
11. They align themselves with like-minded people.
12. They are ambitious.
13. They have clarity and certainty about what they want.
14. They innovate instead of imitate.
15. They don’t procrastinate.
16. They are life-long learners.
17. They are glass half full people, while still being practical and down-to-earth.
18. They consistently do what they need to do, regardless of how they are feeling on a given day.
19. They take calculated risks.
20. They deal with problems quickly and effectively.
21. They don’t believe in, or wait for, fate, destiny, chance or luck.
22. They take action before they have to.
23. They are more effective than most at managing their emotions.
24. They are good communicators.
25. They have a plan for their life and they work methodically to turn that plan into a reality.
26. They become exceptional by choice.
27. They work through the tough stuff that most would avoid.
28. They have identified what is important to them and they do their best to live a life which is reflective of those values.
29. They have balance. They know that money is a tool and ultimately, it’s just another resource.
30. They understand the importance of discipline and self-control.
31. They are secure in their sense of self-worth.
32. They are generous and kind.
33. They are happy to admit mistakes and apologize.
34. They are adaptable and embrace change.
35. They keep themselves in shape physically.
36. They work hard and are not lazy.
37. They are resilient.
38. They are open to, and more likely to act upon, feedback.
39. They don’t hang out with toxic people.
40. They don’t invest time or emotional energy into uncontrollable things.
41. They are happy to swim against the tide.
42. They comfortable with their own company.
43. They set high standards for themselves.
44. They don’t rationalize failure.
45. They know how to relax, enjoy what they have in their life and to have fun.
46. Their career is not their identity, it’s their job.
47. They are more interested in what is effective than in what is easy.
48. They finish what they start.
49. They realize that not only are they physical and psychological beings, but emotional and spiritual creatures as well.
50. They practice what they preach.
Lifehack May 12, 2008