Book Summary: The Success Principles by Jack Canfield

If you want to achieve true, lasting success in your life – the kind of success that will be the foundation for your life’s legacy – you need to master these 25 success principles by Jack Canfield.

Success is something that is within our grasp and can be achieved with focus, dedication & hard work.

It is possible for every person to become successful – what is needed is the right mindset. Right now, you can make a decision to become a student of success.

“Opportunities don’t happen. You create them.” — Chris Grosser.

You can start on a journey that will take you to a future where everything you want is possible but just remember not to compromise on your happiness while you chase success.

25 Success Principles are:

1. Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life

Ever since our childhood, our minds are conditioned to ask for permission.

But on the journey to success and to unlock your full potential, you must learn to give yourself permission to become the owner of your life.

It’s only when we take charges of our own actions, will we be able to carve the path to success.


2. Be Clear Why You Are Here

It’s important to understand the purpose of our actions – ‘what we are doing’ and ‘why we are doing it?’

That’s perhaps the most important action which successful people take, for the sake of understanding their ‘purpose’ and to focus fully on their passion with all their energy and enthusiasm.

The ‘purpose’ finds meaning only when you’re doing what you love to do, what you’re good at doing, and the way you do it – are all channelized to fetch the adequate result.


3. Decide What You Want

You would be glad to know that nearly 70% of people don’t really know what they want and thus, achieving their goals becomes a futile act.

Everyone knows the feeling of having an inner urge to do something that excites them whenever they think of it.

But generally, people rarely make that thing happen. In order to climb that ladder of success, it is primarily necessary to know what you want – to fixate your mind on your goal and then aim for it.


4. Believe It’s Possible

As they say, ‘Anything is possible if you believe in it’.

When you decide what you want and you know that you have the potential to achieve it, you have the ability to put in the hard work that it requires, and you’re clear about you want to steer your life – how can things be impossible?

The most important part of being successful isn’t just about having skills or talent, but belief. 


5. Believe in Yourself

You need to be able to believe in yourself – your abilities, skills, and passions – to take the leap towards your goals and become successful.

Remember that if you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will. There would be times when you’d doubt yourself, think that you’re just not good enough.

You might fail at the first attempt, maybe at the second too. But never stop believing in yourself – for you need to know that there’s nothing impossible for you to do!


6. Becoming an Inverse Paranoid

To put it in the words of Rumi, “What you seek is seeking you” – is a complex idea and it can be understood in many ways depending on your perspective.

But one thing that is common in all is a reminder that the things we desire are not that difficult to be achieved if only we are willing to change ourselves.

This can also be termed as ‘inverse paranoid’, which essentially is a belief that everything and everyone around you is conspiring for your good.

Eventually, this positive thought can be a big stepping stone towards success.


7. Unleash the Power of Goal Setting

You’d be surprised to know that only 3% of adults have clear, written goals.

Needless to say, these people are much more than those people of equal or better education and ability.

Goal setting, as I’ve been mentioning all these while, is super important & you’ll only realize the true power of it, once you’ve etched your goals in your heart, mind & soul.


8. Chunk It Down (Divide Your Big Goals into Small Ones)

It’s always more sensible to set smaller goals, than aiming for one straight big goal.

To explain it better, compare taking a leap to a higher floor with climbing the stairs – not only would the latter be easier, but it’ll also be less stressful.

And when you make smaller goals, there’s a sense of achievement in every step taken, thus making the journey towards the goal enjoyable.


9. Success Leaves Clues

One of the great things about living in today’s world of abundance and opportunity is that almost everything you want to do has already been done by someone else.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s losing weight, starting a business, becoming financially independent, triumphing over breast cancer, or volunteering abroad for a meaningful cause – someone has already done it and left clues in the form of books, blogs & vlogs, university classes, online courses, seminars, and workshops.

All you have to do is, take advantage of this information, and discover that life is simply a connect-the-dots game – all the dots have already been identified and organized by somebody else.


10. Release the Brakes

Sometimes, you need to let loose and embrace what comes your way.

Trying to control everything, all the time, might get too much to handle – so it’s better to release the brakes and go with the flow.

It’s important to know that you can’t control every damn thing and it’s absolutely fine.


11. See What You Want, Get What You See

The process of visualizing for success is really quite simple. All you have to do is close your eyes and see your goals as already complete.

This will not just boost your energy and motivate you unparalleled, but also help you to understand how things will appear, once you put in all your hard work and make it to the finishing line.

You’ll be surprised to know that your brain sees no difference whatsoever between visualizing something and actually doing it.


12. Act as If It Were Impossible to Fail

Half the battle is lost when we doubt ourselves! So let that pessimism be aside, and act as if it’s impossible to fail.

It might be a case of faking it until you make it, taking bold actions as if you really believe that you can’t fail, and then building up your confidence and your belief that you really can’t.

Even if things don’t work out you still infused them with the right energy, rather than taking a defeatist approach that it probably wouldn’t work.

It means you’ll try bigger and bolder things than if you are doubting yourself the whole time.


13. Take Action

Just setting a goal and believing that you can achieve it won’t be all – but you need to take actions in real, to make things happen.

To put it in the words of Jack Canfield, “No matter how ambitious your goals, or how brilliant your plans are for achieving them, if you’re not prepared to take regular consistent action to reach them, they’re not really goals at all—they’re just wishes, fantasies and daydreams.”


14. Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

It’s fine to be scared at times, but make sure that fear doesn’t hamper your actions.

There can be various reasons to be scared and you’ll have thoughts like – What if I can’t do it? What if the results are not as good as I want them to be?

What if others don’t like the approach? Will this make sense? – so on and so forth!

But just try and understand that these thoughts would eventually make no sense at all, after you accomplish the tasks and achieve the final results.


15. Ask, Ask, Ask

We’re often hesitant to seek out for help but it’s also important to know that trying to only give throws us off balance as well.

Asking for help (in moderation) demonstrates trust and helps build bonds of intimacy that pay off well while climbing the ladder of success.

Exposing your human limitations to someone shows that you’re willing to be vulnerable to them and that you understand that one can fully grow with the support of others.

Think of tree – can it grow and bloom without the support of the soil, the sun, the air, and water?


16. Reject Rejections

Rejection hurts and often kills our enthusiasm. But to become successful, you need to learn how to reject rejections!

Let no one bring you down by saying that you’re bad in something, or your work isn’t up to the mark.

We all need feedback but it’s important to take the negative feedback as a dose to improve and let it motivate you to achieve bigger and better.


17. Use Feedback to Your Advantage

As I mentioned in the previous point, feedbacks are significant while we are working on something and trying to achieve a pre-set goal.

While we all love to get positive feedback from people, and that encourages us to go leaps & bounds, we must also be open to negative feedback and learn how to use them for our advantage.

Every bit of criticism is a gift, helping you see past your ego and make the changes you need to become more competent, more effective, and more valuable.


18. Commit to Constant and Never-Ending Improvement

Even when you’re good at something, you still have scope to improve and do better.

Achievers — whether in business, sports, or the arts — are committed to continual improvement.

If you want to be more successful, you need to learn to ask yourself, “How can I make this better?” “Can I do this more passionately?” “Can I do it more efficiently?”


19. Practice Persistence

Being successful is not easy. If it would have been an easy thing, then everyone would be successful.

To say the least, practicing persistence is surely one of the most important qualities that one needs to focus on, while aiming to be successful.

Just believe in the fact that the longer you’ll hang in there and keep moving ahead, the greater will be the chance that you’re gonna find your way.

No matter how hard something seems right now, the longer that you persist the more likely you are to succeed.


20. Practice the Rule of Five

You must be wondering ‘What exactly are these 5 rules?’ but here lies the trick – ‘The Rule of Five’ is a relative thing and it varies from person to person, from goal to goal.

It simply means that every day, you need to do 5 specific things that will move your goal toward completion.

For example, if you are trying to cut down a massive tree, take 5 swings of the axe on it daily, and once day, it’ll surely fall off. 


21. Surround Yourself with Successful People

Your company will greatly affect your mindset. If you’re hanging out with people who are lousy & take things for granted, you’ll also tend to become like them and keep procrastinating.

Similarly, the mantra to be successful is to stay connected with those who have achieved something by themselves and can sow the seeds of enthusiasm in you as well. Having people to learn from keeps your progression going.


22. Clean Up Your Messes and Your Incompletes

We often tend to leave things unfinished, which surely isn’t a good thing to do.

To be honest, when you don’t complete the tasks from the past, you can’t be free to fully embrace the present.

It’s definitely a mess that we create for ourselves, often not knowing how to wrap things up and get going. In order to be successful, it’s better to get 5 things completed, than to try out 50 things and leave them incomplete. 


23. Develop Four New Success Habits a Year

Our habits often determine how we are as a person, which eventually affects our way to work and the outcomes as well.

One of the most important steps towards becoming successful is to inculcate positive habits which will create positive consequences.

Since there are 52 weeks in a year, how about focusing on one good habit every 13 weeks?

It isn’t that difficult a task, right? Eventually, by the end of the year, you’ll have 4 positive habits that’ll stay with you forever.


24. Stay Focused on Your Core Genius

There is something that you are effortlessly good at.

For me, I believe it’s writing as words come naturally to me and I love to weave stories with them, eventually narrating the tales that I wish to tell people.

Similarly, you might be good at sketching or talking, motivating others, or managing time efficiently.

We all possess one innate quality that we must hone for better and learn to seek help for what we are not good at, (or maybe delegate work to others, who excel in them).


25. Start Now… Just Do It!

And after all that’s said, you just need a little push to get started and get going! Successful people never procrastinate – and if you wish to achieve your goals and stand out there in the limelight, you better start now (and there’s no right time to start!) and just do it.

Flap your wings, feel the air and just fly high…none can stop you from making it to your goals.

To know more about this, you can read Jack Canfield’s book – The Success Principles.

Mastering success isn’t easy, but it’s simple. So get started and embrace all that the journey to success has in store for you.

All said and done, remember that becoming happy is more important than becoming successful.


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