13 ways successful people get more done than the average person

You won't ever get to where you want to be if you can't get things done consistently. Whether it is a New Year's resolution or a new life direction, you have to do something different if you want to achieve success.

That requires focus and determination and a plan for getting things done. If you can't get things done, you'll never change your life for the better.

You have to have a plan — a guaranteed process you execute on a regular basis — and be willing to do whatever it takes to execute that plan.

Here are a few steps to help you do that:

1. Take the time to build a list of everything that you need to do

Keep that list updated as new thoughts, ideas, and goals hit you. Make sure you have easy access to that list at all times so that you can quickly add to it.

2. Make sure you know what matters now and what can wait until later

Build priorities. Label contingencies. Describe the outcomes you want to see. You can delete stuff later. Just get it all listed out in order of importance.

3. Use smart technology to remind you of key events

Tools like Todoist and Google Calendar make it easy to set up alarms and repeating events. You're guaranteed to get more thing done when you are reminded of the most important things that you need to be doing.

4. Build a "Minimum List"

Tag the items on your list that make up the bare minimum that you need to achieve each day. You'll be surprised at how few items stay on the list, and you'll be motivated to keep building momentum.

5. Hire the extra help you need

Instead of trying to do everything yourself, find key tasks — or parts of tasks — that you can hire someone else to help you with. Use online platforms like Fiverr and Upwork to find the help you need to be amazing.

6. Take time to get physical

Instead of eliminating regular exercise from your schedule, protect the time you work up a sweat. Run. Punch. Kick. Cycle. Just move fast. You'll find yourself thinking of ideas you wouldn't have considered. You'll return to your work focused.

7. Refuse to waste a second on regrets or worries

It's easy to spin out of control when you think about what you could have done or should have done. Replace those negative thoughts with specific thoughts for moving towards where you want to be.

8. Stop watching so much TV

It's amazing how distracting a binge-watch session on Netflix can be. Instead of working toward success, your brain goes to mush when you call up the latest episode instead of working on the things that matter most.

9. Be clear about what matters and why you want to achieve it

That state of not knowing exactly what you want but feeling dissatisfied with where you are right now is just a waste of your time. Hire a coach or a therapist. Join a Mastermind group. Find a new set of friends.

10. Get enough sleep

Most human beings need six to eight hours of sleep each night to operate at optimum performance. When you do more, you need more sleep. Don't overdo the sleeping part and don't think you can cheat time by sleeping less. It'll backfire on you.

11. Give time and attention to others

When you invest in others, your brain tells itself that you have more than you need. That sends a signal to the rest of your body to calm down. That everything will be OK. You'll actually do better work.

12. Pay attention to the details

Getting things done isn't the same as getting things done well. Don't just check things off your list. Make sure you've done the best that you can do. Take the time to reflect on what you can do better the next time.

13. Apologize when things don't go the way you want

When things are busy and you're focused on you, it's easy to make mistakes or hurt people's feelings. Instead of letting that negativity linger, make the smart decision to apologize early. And mean it. Then move on.

Each day is an opportunity to do things that matter.

Don't waste your chance at greatness because you don't know how to get things done. Move. Plan. Work. Strategize. And improve.

Use these series of steps to make sure that you are performing at your full potential. It's usually only takes a few small changes to realize massive improvement in your results — and lifestyle.

Dan Waldschmidt is a speaker and business strategist who works with billion-dollar companies. He has been published by Business Insider, Forbes and CNBC, and The Wall Street Journal praised his blog as one of the most influential sales blogs.

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