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15 Things You Should Give Up To Be Successful

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Hi, I’m Maxine,

Have you ever wondered why you’re not reaching your next level in business and life?

Today, I’m going to share with you some of the main reasons why most people never achieve success.

You see, there are so many things that hinder us from achieving our goals.

We all cling on to bad habits, destructive behavior and limiting beliefs.  

The difference between stagnation and growth are often subtle shifts.

15 things to give up for more success

1. Give Up Your Mask

In order to avoid getting hurt and rejected, we hide who we really are behind a mask of who we think we should be.

Have the courage to be you, to show your true emotions and stand behind them – even at the risk of disapproval.

Embrace not only the “good” side of you, but also the vulnerable side. Because vulnerability is authentic and real.

It’s the source of creativity and innovation. It creates opportunity.

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”  ~Brené Brown,

2. Give Up Your Belief In The Future

Yes, your future holds your hopes, your dreams and desires – but your future depends on the choices you make today.

Believe in the present.  You only ever have this moment – because the past moments are gone and the future will eventually show up as another moment of now.

Success starts at this very moment, with the choices you make right now. Practice presence.

Notice what’s around you, what you see, hear, taste and smell. Notice what you experience and interact with it.

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.”

~Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

3. Give Up Your SOS  (Shiny Object Syndrome)

rare pokemon cards

Whether it’s chasing that next “shiny” idea or the secret shortcuts to success – we are all guilty of this addiction.

The pursuit of everything that seems appealing is seductive. It makes us get side-tracked, loose focus and go in a million different directions. 

Take time to identify the ideas and activities worth pursuing and then stick to them on a consistent basis.

“If you want to draw water you do not dig six one-foot wells. You dig one six-foot well.” ~Buddha

4. Give Up Your Need Of Approval from others

You sabotage your success if you make choices that aim to avoid disapproval. Your ego’s seeking of recognition is never ending and makes you miss potentially rewarding opportunities because of your fear of being criticized.

Choose wisely between what’s good for the ego and what’s good for your success.

“A truly strong person does not need the approval of others any more than a lion needs the approval of sheep.” ~Vernon Howard

5. Give Up Taking “No” As An Answer!

Interpret feedback the way you choose to: A “no” doesn’t mean “no” – it just means “not right now” or “not this way”.

Whatever it is that you want to achieve, don’t take rejection as a final answer.

Take it as a useful feedback that says, “Keep going”.

6. Give Up Distinguishing Between Your Private And Work Life

All aspects of your life are interconnected. You are fooling yourself by believing your private life doesn’t impact your entrepreneurial success.  

You are hindering your growth if some areas of your life are a mess. True success encompasses all areas.

Bring passion, perseverance and joy to all of the roles you play: as an entrepreneur, a lover or a friend… Make all aspects of your life successful and be proactive.

7. Give Up Your Reluctance To Ask For Help

Be man enough to admit you don’t know everything. Don’t take asking for help as a sign of weakness.

Instead, embrace it as an act of strength: it indicates honesty, intelligence and your rise above the ego that wants to do it all alone. Remember:

“The strong individual is the one who asks for help when he needs it.”  ~Rona Barrett

8. Give Up Fixing Your Weaknesses

We live in a society that emphasize the need to be well-rounded. Successful people hardly ever tick that box – instead they know, embrace and manage around their weaknesses.

Fixing weaknesses is just another strategy to play safe – playing not to lose instead of playing to win.

Change your focus from fixing weaknesses to capitalizing on your strengths – because you will grow the most in your areas of talents.

“Emphasize strengths, don’t fix weaknesses.” ~Timothy Ferriss

9. Give Up Trying To Be Perfect

Perfectionism is based on the false belief that if we do things perfectly, we can avoid failure.

It’s an unhealthy quest to make your work flawless in order to earn approval and acceptance from others.

Recognize the distinct difference between giving your best and trying to be perfect. Ask yourself if spending the extra time will make an equivalent difference to your success in the long run.

Always favor progress over perfection.

“Perfectionism is not a quest for the best. It is a pursuit of the worst in ourselves, the part that tells us that nothing we do will ever be good enough – that we should try again.” ~Julia Cameron

10. Give Up Playing Small

We are all afraid of failure, so we play small.

Playing a bigger game means following your own path. Listening to your intuition, doing what feels right compared to doing what everybody else tells you to do.

By playing small, you are not serving yourself nor anyone else. Instead play big, go out of your comfort zone. 

Be prepared to be wrong and fail. Be prepared to feel fear.

“If you’re are paralyzed with fear it’s a good sign. It shows you do what you have to do.” ~Steven Pressfield

11. Give Up Your Dependency On Willpower

Regardless of willpower being limited or not – tasks done on autopilot require less thought, decision-making and energy.

To be successful, you have to act successful. Align your actions with your goals.  

Create routines that automate taking the right actions. Be intentional about setting work, health, fitness and relationship habits. 

Automate your behavior, one habit at a time.

12. Give Up Your Resistance To What Is

The present moment is out of your circle of influence. You can’t change what is happening right now.

Instead of wasting your energy complaining, being upset, annoyed or disappointed, learn to fully accept the present moment and your current thoughts and emotions.

What is more insane than resisting something that can’t be changed? Acceptance doesn’t not mean approval. It doesn’t mean you can’t take action to change an undesirable situation.

Instead, it means saying “yes” to life as it presents itself and then moving forward. Let go of your resistance. Say “yes” to how you feel, “yes” to what is happening right now. When you do, life will get a hell of a lot easier and will work for you, not against you.

“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.” ~Eckhart Tolle

13. Give up Trying to Be too Clever

Be different and innovate, but not for the sake of being different, but out of a quest to make things better.  Overcome your reluctance to make use of proven methods and good advice.

Don’t try to be clever in order to earn other people’s approval and enhance your self-worth. Act out of a desire for improvement and service and you will end up being clever in the process.

14. Give Up Waiting For Luck

Luck builds its foundation on preparation. To be successful, you don’t just have to be lucky to come across good opportunities, but you have to be ready and prepared to make use of them.

Be the right person in the right place at the right time through preparation. Lucky people act in a way that increases their change of good opportunities.

Be open-minded and optimistic. Prepare for your luck then go out and find it.

“Opportunity is where you find it ….not where it finds you ” ~Old Proverb

15. Give Up Other People’s Versions Of Success


Being successful and feeling successful are quite different things. Reaching other people’s version of success does not come with the joy and happiness that you were hoping for.

Success is a word that means many different things. Chasing other people’s dreams means betraying your own ones.

Define your version of success and give up all the others.

“There is only one success: to be able to spend your life in your own way” ~Christopher Morley


Maxine-ProfileThis is a guest post by Maxine, a mindset & talent blogger. You can follow her on her Facebook Page.

Bonus from IncomeDiary Editor

16. Stop associating with Toxic People!

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

~ Jim Rohn

Spend time with people who are more successful than you and you will become more successful.

Spend time with less successful people – in particular with negative and toxic people – and you will become like them!

Take a look around you – are there any people you could do with avoiding, spending less time with?

Surround yourself with positive people. Get rid of the toxic ones in your life. You become whom you associate with.

Success is all about having the right mindset – 50 of the most powerful perspectives on success from some of history’s most successful people. Their definitions, quotations, formulas, misconceptions, and principles paint a clear picture of the mindset of a success.


  1. jegede26 says:

    Great Tips. Thanks for sharing. I will stop taking “No” As “No” from now on

  2. Kumar D S says:

    One should take ‘No” as “Next opportunity”

  3. Brian Farello says:

    I completely agree that people need to give up a lot of things to be successful. Not many people will put in the time and effort to listen to the steps in your article. I think it’s important to change your mindset and follow the 15 things you outlined in order to see more results and change in their lives. Thanks so much for this article. I will definitely be sharing it with my followers.

    • Maxine Schiffmann says:

      Thanks Brian! I really appreciate that.
      I also think giving up many of the point above will make people happier too. (especially # 4,12 and 15)

  4. Good article. Saved and favorited. And I’m taking note on the things I need to stop doing TODAY.

  5. Haashir Mohammed says:

    Can anybody explain to me what’s the second point about? I couldn’t get it yet an impressive and inspirational post indeed.

    • Maxine Schiffmann says:

      Hey Haashir,
      Thanks for asking about point #2. The idea comes from Eckhard Tolle’s Book “The power of Now” and to be honest it’s not easy to grasp at first. He says that time is basically an illusion we have created in our mind.

      In his words: “Have you ever experienced, done, thought or felt anything outside the Now?
      Nothing ever happened in the past. It happened in the Now. Nothing will ever happen in the
      future, it will happen in the Now.

      What you think of as the past is a memory trace, stored in the mind, of a former Now. When you remember the past, you reactivate a memory trace – and you do so now. The future is an imagined Now, a projection of mind. When the future comes, it comes as the Now. When you think about the future, you do it now.” (Chapter 3 page 50)

      Silly but good example: yesterday you wrote this comment. My reply to you was something that you thought will happen in the “future”. Now, you are reading this comment – meaning you are just experiencing that “future”. You experience it as a present moment. Right now you experience something you considered your future yesterday.

      It’s the same with every single future moment – it eventually comes and get experienced as the presence.So because you will only ever experience your future as a present moment,
      it’s vital to fully make use of it. If you always live in the future instead of the present, you lose out double: you miss making use of the current moment and also of your future ones because future will arrive just as another present moment (but then you are already in the future again)

      I know the concept is a little different than society’s outlook on life and
      time but give it a good thought.

      Hope that made it clearer! 😉
      If not, just contact me:

  6. Harriet Dennis says:

    Thanks Maxine. Wonderful life-changing tips. I felt vulnerable just reading them with only me in the room…now to rid myself of the “I’m the only one” syndrome. I will definitely share this with others. Thanks again.

  7. Dan Western says:

    Excellent points Maxine, each better than the last! Look forward to reading more from you.

  8. Hannah Tan says:

    To be a successful one we should give up the things that will hinder us to reach our goal in life. Many of us wants to achieve our dreams, to be able to get there, willing to get risk for that dream and to be succeed on it. But always remember of what you give up that makes you rich. And also don’t forget to be humble no matter what you’ve become.

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