Is Adult Coloring for You?

Adults have their own coloring books now, and they may be therapeutic. Some studies show that coloring helps to relieve stress and anxiety and even produces positive changes in heart rates and brain waves.

While fans are enthusiastic, some experts are a bit more cautious. There is strong evidence to support the effectiveness of art therapy for helping patients to manage serious conditions, including cancer and addictions. On the other hand, adult coloring books have been popular for only about 5 years, so less is known about them.

Could coloring help you deal with routine daily pressures? Before you break out the crayons or colored pencils, find out more about this growing hobby.

Benefits of Adult Coloring:

1. Promote mindfulness. Coloring can help you to put aside regrets about the past and concerns about the future as you focus on what you’re doing in the present moment. In that sense, it does have positive effects similar to meditation.

2. Think positive. Shifting your attention away from overdue bills and noisy neighbors can feel good. Your mood brightens as you contemplate pretty colors and interesting pictures.

3. Find balance. Any offline hobby that allows you to take a break from technology is a bonus these days. Studies show that checking social media or phone messages too frequently contributes to anxiety.

4. Enjoy flexibility. Compared to other hobbies, coloring is inexpensive and portable. You can do it waiting at the airport or sitting in a coffee shop.

5. Start small. Another major advantage to coloring is that it requires no significant skills to succeed. If you felt like an underachiever in high school art classes, you can still color between the lines.

How to Make Coloring Therapeutic:

1. Look for patterns. Repetition, pattern, and detail seem to be the key elements. Studies show that coloring mandalas and geometric shapes is more soothing than working on unstructured designs.

2. Explore different themes. Adult coloring books offer a wide range of topics. Pick something that interests you, whether it’s science fiction or architecture.

3. Share your work. Add a social aspect. Frame your favorite masterpieces and put them on display for friends to see. Post images and comments on social media. Throw a party or color side-by-side with your children.

4. Have fun. However you color, think of it as playtime. Let go of expectations and enjoy the process.

Additional Tips:

1. Consider art therapy. If you’re dealing with serious issues, art therapy may provide more relief than just coloring. That’s because you interact with a trained counselor and you make your own original works.

2. Express yourself. Of course, trauma isn’t the only reason for creating art. You can learn more about yourself and communicate with others through drawing, painting, and other methods.

3. Continue your education. You may be more creative than you think. Sign up for a sculpture class or join a Meetup group where you can share feedback with other budding artists. Check the event listings at your local museum for lectures and hands-on activities.

4. Practice meditation. If you use coloring to promote mindfulness, you might want to deepen your experience with other forms of meditation. Try sitting for a brief period each day and working your way up to longer sessions.

5. Remember your childhood. Coloring seems to be especially effective with adults who previously enjoyed it as children. Maybe there are other youthful pastimes you want to revive like playing piano or baking cookies.

Coloring is an inexpensive and easy hobby that can help you relax. Whether you stick with putting the finishing touches on someone else’s designs or move on to creating your own works, you can use art to increase your mindfulness and find more peace.

We’ve all heard about affirmations. Using them sounds like a great idea, but how do you actually create an affirmation and use it to your advantage?

Affirmations can be a powerful tool to enhance your thinking and results. It might seem silly to repeat statements that you view as essentially untrue, but give it a try for a month and measure the results for yourself.

It can take time to see the benefits. A few days aren’t enough. Give yourself a full month.

Create a new life and way of thinking through the power of affirmations:

1. Determine your negative beliefs. The best way to create positive affirmations that work for you is to determine where your current thinking is holding you back. Spend a day and focus on your self-talk. Make a note of all the negative thoughts you think throughout the day. Write them down.

2. Create your affirmations based on your negative beliefs. Affirmations should be stated in the present and in a positive manner. For example:

* “I don’t have any friends” becomes “I make friends quickly and easily.”

* “I can’t get in shape” becomes “I find it easy to eat well, exercise, and lose weight.”

* Spend the time to create affirmations that address all of your negative thoughts.

3. Record your affirmations so you can listen to them. You’ll want to be able to listen to your affirmations in the car, at home, or on the go. Record them into your cell phone or iPod-type device. Whatever works for you is fine.

4. Have a written record of your affirmations, too. Keep a copy with you and post other copies where you’ll see them: at work, in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and your locker at the gym. Choose places that make sense for your lifestyle.

5. Never pass up the opportunity to listen to or read your affirmations. Stuck in line at the store? Pull out your iPod or list of affirmations and listen or read. Use your spare time to recite your affirmations to yourself.

6. The times right before falling asleep and right after waking up are most important. Your brain is more receptive to suggestion during these times. Use them to your advantage. It only takes a few minutes. You might even find that you sleep better.

7. Notice your successes. The changes you experience will be very subtle. You probably won’t even recognize them unless you’re looking for them. Once a week, sit down and think about your life. Ask yourself how things are improving. What positive changes are you seeing?

8. Keep a list of your successes. Keep a journal so you don’t forget about the progress you’ve made. You’re already good at keeping track of your failures, so do the same for your successes. Review your successes to keep them fresh in your mind. Success leads to more success, so keep track!

9. Repeat the entire process as needed. Over time, you’ll develop new, negative self-talk. Use it to your advantage. Add new affirmations to your list and use them. Your self-talk will become less negative as you become more aware of it. This is a process you can use throughout your lifetime.

If you’ve never given affirmations a try, you’re in for a surprise. As simple as affirmations can be, it can be challenging to get started. Avoid allowing your resistance to stop you.

Forge ahead and give affirmations your best effort for just a month. Affirmations are a simple method to tame your self-talk and use it to your advantage.

Are you facing adversity in your life? Join the club. Life is constantly handing us challenges to overcome. A big part of living is dealing with adversity. While it’s not enjoyable, it’s a part of life that you can expect to encounter on a regular basis. So, learning how to deal with adversity is worth your time and attention.

There are several factors that determine your ability to deal with adversity effectively:

1. Experience. If you’ve successfully dealt with adversity in the past, you’ll be more capable of dealing with it in the future. Experience can also give you more self-confidence.

2. Self-confidence. When you believe you can handle a challenge, you’re more likely to do so. Self-confidence helps to reduce your stress and maintain a positive mood. When you have belief in yourself, challenges are easier to overcome.

3. Social network. Life is easier when you don’t have to face your challenges alone. A strong social network can solve a lot of life’s sticky situations. Is your car not running? That’s easier to deal with when you have 10 different friends and family members that can give you a ride while you get your car repaired.

4. The ability to focus on solutions. When you focus on your adversity, your challenges become bigger and scarier. Focusing on solutions is much more effective and will resolve your issue quicker.

5. Your ability to manage stress. Are you easily overwhelmed by stress? It’s going to be a bumpy ride. However, if you can manage your stress, you can rise to your challenges more easily. Meditate, pray, listen to music, or participate in other activities that release your stress and relax you.

Enhance these qualities in yourself and your ability to face your challenges successfully will multiply.

The best time to work on these items is when life is under control. It’s not easy to build self-confidence when you’re facing a huge challenge. It’s like the guy that decides not to fix the hole in his roof because the weather is sunny and no rain is leaking into his house. Work on your resources when life is pleasant.

Deal with adversity effectively and regain control over your life:

1. Understand that adversity is a part of life. When have you ever not had a challenge of some sort? Never. There’s always something wrong. When one issue is solved, another one will pop up to take it’s place. So dealing with adversity is just part of life.

2. Look on the bright side. Adversity is good for building your internal resources. You become a stronger person and more capable of handling adversity in the future. You might not appreciate this fact now, but it will prove helpful down the road.

3. Focus on what you can control. Most of the things you worry about are out of your control. What’s the point in fretting about it? Spend your resources wisely and address those things you can change.

4. Use your time effectively. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and waste your time on worthless activities. Now is the time to use your time intelligently. Spend it on changing your situation.

5. Remind yourself of the good things in your life. It’s not all bad. There are plenty of good things and people in your life right now. You’ll feel better, and be more capable, if you remind yourself of this fact. Be grateful for what you do have.

You’ve dealt with adversity in the past and you’ll have to do it again. Managing and overcoming adversity separates those that are highly successful and those that struggle.

Learn to enhance your ability to overcome adversity. Build your internal resources and learn lessons from your past. Focus on solutions rather than the challenge. Manage the adversity in your life effectively and you’ll enjoy greater success.

What happens when your friend becomes involved with a new love, but you’re still single? You could wind up being a third wheel. You might find yourself tagging along on their dinner dates or spending your evenings watching TV alone instead of hanging out with your friend.

While being in a relationship with one person can be complicated, interacting with a couple can test your patience and your friendship!

Learn how to be a third wheel without feeling like you’re in the way.

Dealing With Your Own Feelings

Much of your discomfort may be caused by how you’re interpreting the situation. Do you feel like you’re missing out on something when you’re not dating anybody?

Try these activities to discover how to be single without being lonely:

1. Boost your self-esteem. Base your self-worth on something more valid than your relationship status. Think about your purpose in life and how to align your actions with your values. Set challenging goals and take specific steps each day that will help you reach them.

2. Meet new friends. Now that your friend is dating, you may realize that you have become a little over-dependent on them. Try broadening your circle. Strike up a conversation with one of your neighbors or join a Meetup group for hiking or attending concerts.

3. Develop a hobby. Put your extra free time to productive use. Learn how to play badminton or study a foreign language.

4. Work on your love life. It’s okay to want a romantic relationship as long as you also know how to enjoy your own company. You might even find that hanging out with a couple helps you to get introduced to new prospects or look more approachable.

5. Speak up. Figure out what boundaries you need for displays of public affection and other issues. Talk with your friend before minor conflicts build up.

Dealing With the Happy Couple

Being a third wheel doesn’t have to mean feeling conspicuous and intrusive.

Try these strategies for socializing with your friend and their significant other:

1. Create some distance. If your friend’s relationship is still in the initial infatuation stage, you’ll probably want to leave them alone for a while. Enjoy your independence while it lasts.

2. Arrange comfortable dates. When you’re ready to go out as a group, pick spots that are third-wheel friendly. Concerts and coffee shops will probably feel less awkward than intimate restaurants and romantic comedy movies.

3. Bring along more support. Maybe three’s a crowd, but you can blend into a larger group. If you have more than 3 people, it’s hard to say who the third wheel is.

4. Stay neutral. Any couple is bound to quarrel sometimes. Protect your peace of mind and your friendship by letting your friend and her significant other sort out their own conflicts.

5. Respect confidentiality. On the other hand, there are also times when it’s advantageous to lend your services to either member of the happy couple. Maybe your friend needs a sounding board. Maybe the new love wants advice for choosing a romantic birthday gift.

6. Be inclusive. While you’re used to talking with your friend, you may need to shift the conversation so a newcomer can participate. Show a genuine interest in learning more about them.

7. Carve out private time. As long as you respect the new relationship, it’s natural to want some time alone with your friend. Go shopping or schedule a weekly coffee date.

Many single adults go through at least one bout of third wheel syndrome and continue to lead happy and productive lives. If you’re honest with yourself and tactful with your happy couple, you may even wind up with a closer friendship and a healthier perspective on relationships.

Maybe finding your life purpose is easy if you have special gifts like Picasso or Einstein. On the other hand, if you’re way past 21 and still asking yourself what you want to be when you grow up, the process starts to seem less clear.

Even if it takes some effort, it’s still a question worth answering. Numerous studies suggest that finding work that aligns with your purpose is more motivating and satisfying than any pay increase.

If you’re still searching, it’s time to discover your mission!

Use this checklist to help you find and fulfill your purpose.

Finding Your Life Purpose:

1. Calm your mind. Ease yourself into a creative state of mind. Meditate or take a long walk through the park. Soak in a warm bath or read poetry. Your thoughts become more expansive when you take a step back from daily concerns.

2. List your passions. Ask yourself what you value. What would it take to make you excited about getting out of bed in the morning?

3. Identify your strengths. Focus on what you do well. Think about the kind of compliments you receive or tasks that come easily to you.

4. Analyze flow. Recognize the activities that create a flow experience for you. When do you lose track of time and find that your work becomes effortless?

5. Focus on service. Your purpose takes on more meaning when you look beyond yourself and think about how you can have a positive impact on others. Try to find an underserved need that you can help fill.

6. Do research. The internet makes it easy to learn more about any topic related to your purpose. Look up information on careers in education or take cooking classes.

7. Talk with others. Learn from others who are already working in the fields that you find interesting. Attend networking events. When you’re at parties, ask other guests what they do and follow up with relevant questions.

8. Keep a journal. Writing about your search can help you organize your thoughts. Over time, you may spot patterns that will guide you in moving forward.

Fulfilling Your Life Purpose:

1. Be flexible. You may be surprised by some of your discoveries. You may even find that you have more than one purpose. Try to keep an open mind.

2. Change your assumptions. If you’re hesitant to act on your ambitions, you may have self-limiting beliefs that are holding you back. Remember your past accomplishments and focus on what you have to gain.

3. Make realistic plans. It’s okay to aim high, but you want your targets to be feasible. Not everyone who loves opera can sing soprano, but there are plenty of other roles in the same industry, from costume design to fundraising.

4. Set a daily intention. Keep your purpose fresh in your mind. Figure out something you can do each day to bring you closer to your goals. Consistent effort builds momentum, and small victories add up.

5. Evaluate your progress. Assess your development on a regular basis, so you can devote your efforts to activities with the highest payback. Weed out distractions and make adjustments as needed.

6. Find balance. Give equal attention to contemplating your purpose and taking action. Otherwise, you can wind up overlooking your top priorities or missing opportunities.

7. Seek support. Pursuing your purpose is rewarding and challenging. It helps to have partners on your side. Ask your friends and family for the assistance you need. Team up with others who share your vision.

Being driven by purpose will make you happier and more successful. Examine your experiences and discover how to share your unique gifts.

We spend much of our lives waiting, but we rarely receive any instructions on how to do it. In fact, technology seems to be making it more difficult for us. You may have heard the statistic that about half the population abandons a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to open.

Of course, things move much slower offline at doctor’s offices and amusement parks. If you’re feeling frustrated, try these strategies to make waiting more comfortable in some of the most common and challenging situations.

Waiting for News

It could be something life-altering like a medical exam or a job interview, or you might just be curious about the package that’s supposed to be delivered today. Either way, how can you go on with your life when you want resolution?

Try these tips:

1. Practice mindfulness. Daily meditation trains your mind to remain in the present instead of worrying about the future or reliving the past. You’ll be able to concentrate on what you’re doing until the results come in.

2. View yourself objectively. Do you sometimes tie your self-worth to externals like the feedback you receive at work? Building up your confidence can keep you balanced.

3. Accept uncertainty. Life is full of ambiguity and changes. When you acknowledge that reality, you can stop wasting energy by fighting with it.

4. Think positive. A cheerful outlook makes you happier and more productive. You’re a winner whether you get the news you want or find a way to bounce back from disappointment.

Waiting for Love

Maybe you see your friends partnering up, and you feel like you’re missing out on something. Remember that you can live a happy and meaningful life regardless of your relationship status.

While waiting for a romantic relationship, devote your energy to other actions, like these:

1. Develop your interests. Pursue your goals now instead of waiting for marriage or any arbitrary milestone to occur. As a side benefit, you’ll be more interesting if you run into a potential partner.

2. Boost your self-esteem. Know that you are worthy of love and respect. Strive to be a superior version of you instead of comparing yourself to others. Treat yourself and others with generosity and compassion.

3. Hang out with friends. Being single doesn’t have to mean being lonely. Nurture long-term friendships and reach out to new acquaintances. Throw parties and plan group vacations.

4. Evaluate your approach. If you are interested in a romantic relationship, be honest with yourself about any obstacles you may be placing in the way of your future. Identify patterns in your dating history that you would like to change. Consider counseling if you need assistance.

Waiting in Line

Ordinary events like standing around at the grocery store may seem trivial, but dealing with them on a frequent basis can affect your mood.

Take the stress out of queuing up by using these strategies:

1. Control what you can. There are many options that can help you reclaim some of the time you spend waiting. Have your groceries delivered or go to the market at nonpeak times. Fill out the necessary forms online before you visit your doctor or a government agency.

2. Occupy your time. When you do have to wait, find a constructive distraction. Use your phone to research projects for work. Chat with the interesting stranger next to you or read a magazine.

3. Seek information. Waiting is less stressful when you know what is happening. If possible, find out the average wait times in advance and ask for updates.

4. Look calm. Appearing patient can make you feel more relaxed. Take a few deep breaths and stretch your limbs.

Be mindful and patient whether you’re waiting at the airport or by your phone. Time will go by faster and you’ll feel less anxious.

You may long to be in a relationship, but not all relationships are created equal. Some relationships cause more grief than they’re worth. While being alone can be a bit of a downer, it can be preferable to being in a toxic relationship.

Ask yourself if your relationship is enhancing your life or making it more challenging. You deserve the very best!

Toxic relationships can be challenging to leave. It’s not comforting to face the world alone, even temporarily. However, a little alone time can have its advantages, too.

There are several signs that you may be in a toxic relationship:

1. A consistent lack of trust. It doesn’t matter whether you don’t trust the other person, or they don’t trust you. Relationships are incredibly draining when there is a pervasive lack of trust. There’s never any peace.

2. You’re forced to compromise your values on a regular basis. When you’re put in the position to live outside of the tenets you consider to be most important, your self-respect suffers. A healthy relationship makes it easier to be at your best.

3. Your partner isn’t supportive of your success. They say you find out who your real friends are during times of distress, but the same can be said of periods of success. It’s not uncommon for friends and family to be unsupportive when you’re doing well. The last thing you want is a partner that displays this type of behavior.

4. Dismissiveness. Are either of you dismissive toward the other? Your interests and projects should be respected. This works both ways. If you’re dismissive of your partner, your relationship could be better.

5. Your partner is unreliable. If you can’t count on your partner, your life is more stressful than it needs to be, and your relationship is harming you.

6. Going somewhere else after work is more relaxing than going home. What’s worse than spending a stressful day at work and deciding you’d rather go sit in a coffee shop alone than go home to your partner? It’s nice to have a home that is an oasis from your everyday stressors.

7. A lack of affection. There’s a lack of closeness when affection wanes. Ask yourself why you no longer want to touch each other.

8. You resist confiding in your partner. When you have something sensitive to discuss, it would be nice to be able to rely on your partner. If you find yourself hesitant to share, it could be a sign that your relationship isn’t healthy. Ideally, your partner is also your best friend.

9. The relationship is harmful to any children involved. Relationships should enhance the lives of the children. Frightened or discouraged children are a warning sign.

10. You feel unsafe with your partner. No relationship is worth risking your safety. Make your health and well-being a priority in your life.

11. You can think of other people with whom you’d rather be in a relationship. Do you find yourself wishing you could be in a relationship with a friend or coworker instead of with your current partner? Something is amiss if you’re imagining yourself with someone else.

Hopefully, you’ve reached the conclusion that your relationship is healthy, supportive, and a source of inspiration.

If you believe your relationship is toxic, take the time to investigate further. Be willing to get help from a relationship professional, too. Toxic relationships aren’t worth your time or peace of mind. Ensure that you’re taking the best possible care of yourself.

Conversations screech to a halt in a lot of homes in the after school hours when parents ask “How was school today?” If that’s been your opening line, your child has probably told you that school was okay or even suggested that somehow the day went by without any activity occurring.

What you really want is for them to open up and talk about school and their friends. After all, you’re concerned about their education and happiness, and you want to be there for them.

Even if your children seem a little reticent, they need your support too.

Try these strategies that can help you communicate more effectively.

Nonverbal Communication Strategies:

1. Take a breather. If you arrive home looking forward to some peace and quiet after a day at the office, your children might feel the same way after school lets out. Give them a half hour to relax before mentioning homework.

2. Be affectionate. Touch is vital for healthy brain development and bonding. Hug your children regularly.

3. Play around. Small children may find it difficult to put their feelings into words. Tossing a ball around or jumping rope can help release stress. When they’re ready to talk, stuffed animals or sock puppets may help them express how they feel.

4. Use art. Study the drawings that your child brings home. They may give you insights into what they’re thinking about.

5. Stay informed. The more you know about your child’s schedule and studies, the more you’ll be able to support them. Talk with their teacher and other parents. Use the school website to stay updated on news and events.

6. Engage in activities. The most constructive conversations often develop naturally when you’re preparing dinner or taking a walk together. Spending time with your children creates more opportunities for deeper communication.

7. Schedule family dinners. One of the most beneficial activities is eating together. Regular family dinners provide a time to connect and practice conversation skills.

Verbal Communication Strategies:

1. Ask specific questions. Younger children often need targeted questions to help them organize their thoughts. If you want to understand what happened at recess, guide them through it step by step.

2. Be direct. Transparency will earn you more trust than skirting around sensitive subjects. Be gentle but firm when you need to explore behavior issues or failing grades.

3. Offer praise. Pay attention to your child’s accomplishments as well as the areas where they might be struggling. Let them know that you’re proud of them for making an effort to learn French or being kind to a new child who just transferred to their school.

4. Encourage solutions. It’s tempting to rush in and fix things when you see your child in distress. However, they’ll have a brighter future if you give them enough room to solve their own challenges.

5. Laugh it up. Use a little humor to defuse embarrassing situations. Share a story from your childhood about how you dealt with a teacher who scared you or tried to make yourself more popular.

6. Be a role model. Sharing details about your workplace will show your child how to talk about their experiences too. You may find that they’ll be asking you to tell them about your day.

7. Listen closely. Be an active listener. Set aside time to stop what you’re doing, and give your child your full attention. They’ll be more likely to open up when they see how much you care.

The way you talk with your children has a major impact on being able to share information and build strong connections. Let your child know that you’re interested in their school day, and ask them what you can do to help them learn and grow.

Freelancers need to network just as much as any company employee. Maximizing your contacts positions you to grow professionally and enjoy greater success.

Even if you spend much of your day working alone, there are many effective ways to make professional connections who can provide insights and advice to help you advance your career.

Try these ideas for building your network online and off.

Networking Basics for Freelancers:

1. Focus on giving. The fundamentals of networking remain the same regardless of your line of work. Colleagues will be more eager to help you if you start out by helping them. Look for ways you can add value to any conversation by sharing your time and talents.

2. Remain alert. You may be surprised by some of the opportunities you discover. A stranger you meet at a party or on a plane could provide a lead to a new client or project. Be prepared with a compelling elevator pitch and remember to follow up.

3. Set goals. Create a strategy for your networking. Establish priorities and have targets you can measure. Maybe you want to spend 1 hour a day on social media or schedule at least 2 coffee dates a month.

Additional Online Networking Tips for Freelancers:

1. Update your profile. How engaging is your LinkedIn profile? Browse around to see what your peers are doing and learn from their example. Investigate other platforms where you want your business to have a presence, such as Facebook and Instagram.

2. Expand your portfolio. Showcase your work. Use your website and other channels to offer interesting and useful articles and videos.

3. Research opportunities. Identify individuals and organizations that could be useful to your work. Look to see if you have any current contacts in common who would be willing to provide a referral for you.

4. Reach out. Be mindful of how you approach others online to avoid sounding too salesy. Personalize your communications by mentioning a mutual friend who referred you or comment on an article they published recently. Try to focus on their needs and concerns.

5. Be professional. Online communications tend to be informal, but you still want to sound courteous and respectful. Proofread and edit your work so you come across as polished and articulate.

Additional Offline Networking Tips for Freelancers:

1. Attend events. Events can be an efficient way to meet a wide circle of like-minded professionals. Check out community calendars for local gatherings or start your own Meetup group. For conferences that require more expenses and travel, figure out which events may have the most impact on your business.

2. Volunteer your services. Joining planning committees or signing up to help at the registration desk is another way to receive discounts and meet more participants at big events. You can also make connections while volunteering at neighborhood nonprofits.

3. Speak up. Public speaking engagements can open doors and raise your visibility. Contact local universities, community groups, and other organizations that might be interested in your presentation.

4. Dine out. If much of your work is solitary, you still have mealtimes and coffee breaks where you can hang out with others. Set up lunch dates and happy hours.

5. Leave home. Shared work spaces encourage socializing. Consider spending at least part of each week doing your tasks at a local coffee shop or food court. See if there are any coworking locations in your community that you would want to join.

Put at least one networking task on your to do list each day that will help you to make meaningful connections and expand your professional circle. Cultivating strong business relationships pays off by giving you opportunities to develop your expertise, find clients, and increase your income.

9 Secrets of Peak Performers

What are the secrets of success? Do you need to be born with unique talents or special gifts? Luckily, success is rarely the result of anything you can’t acquire in your adulthood.

You can develop the daily habits, resiliency, and motivation you need to achieve your goals. These are all things that can be learned if you’re willing to put in the time and effort.

Peak performers have many traits in common:

1. Have goals and review them daily. If you’re like most people, you don’t have a set of concrete goals, and you don’t review them regularly. Never underestimate the power of knowing what you want and reminding yourself on a daily basis.

2. Surround yourself with the right people. Peak performers have people who support their goals on their team and in their social network. If you want to be successful, realize that you can’t do it alone. Hang out with other successful people.

3. Read regularly. Those who are highly successful are constantly upgrading their knowledge and skills. For example, Mark Cuban claims to read three hours each day. You don’t have to read for three hours, but it’s important to make reading a daily habit.

4. Work toward your goals even when you don’t feel like it. If you wait for perfect conditions, you’ll never do anything. You can make progress each day, regardless of everything else that may be going on. To get started, force yourself to work for just 10 minutes. Let momentum keep you going.

5. Get up early. Peak performers are usually early risers. The early morning is quiet and a great time to work, plan, or create. Get a headstart on the day while everyone else is still sleeping.

6. Minimize distractions. At times, the most successful people isolate themselves from the rest of the world to get things done. You might not have investors and fans knocking on your door, but you do have the internet, TV, and kids. Keep distractions to a minimum when it’s time to work.

7. Be consistent. Peak performers don’t work sporadically. They are consistent in their efforts. Make success a daily exercise. Have a list of things you’re going to accomplish and ensure that you do them.

8. Take setbacks in stride. Those that struggle tend to be easily sidelined by obstacles and setbacks. High achievers aren’t bothered by such challenges. Peak performers have resiliency and maintain a balanced perspective. The more challenges you can handle with poise, the more success you’ll enjoy.

9. Make things happen. Successful people don’t sit around and wait for the world to pick them. They pick themselves and make the most of their abilities. Be assertive if you want to be a peak performer.

Success is within reach. Anyone can become a high performer with a positive attitude and habits that support their goals. A few lucky people naturally acquire an effective attitude and habits. The rest of us must cultivate them. Pick a few of these “secrets” and begin implementing them in your life. Success is bound to come your way.