The human experience is one of unbounded beauty, hope and excitement. It is filled with adventure and chasing dreams, achieving goals and making it to the other side. Other times life is just not any of those things at all and there seems to be little light in a dark tunnel that refuses to have an end.

When one bad thing leads to another, when life just could not get any worse or your dreams seems to be going up in smoke, remember that you are the only one that can move past it. Finding the light at the proverbial end of a tunnel can be a matter of perspective but it can also depend to a great extent on our reactions to circumstance.  

If one looks at research done on the personal traits required for success, the results can be a little surprising. It is not access to mountains of money, being born into a blue-blood family, or being well-connected to the powers that be, the kingpins of the moment – although all of those things can certainly help!

What makes people successful is often the more subtle and easily overlooked qualities like self-belief and a positive mindset, being brave, chasing a dream and having a kind, generous spirit. These are the things that makes the difference between ultimate success and failure. Successful people often get there through sheer determination and grit, perseverance and a positive attitude. Being flexible and open to change will go a long way in getting you to achieve your goals, possibly a lot more than what we give it credit for. In fact, the words, courage, drive, optimism, a willingness to learn, giving back, and being kind and resilient get mentioned almost in every article on the topic.  

One tends to think that success equals cut-throat tactics, pushing others out of the way and stealing and dealing. Very few truly, inspirational people obtained success in that manner.

Based on some research, here is my summary list of the top 10 traits for successful people, there are off course many more (have a look for yourself by clicking on the links above). What do you think, is it surprising? Do you recognise some of these traits in yourself?

  1. A positive mindset
  2. The ability to let go
  3. Accepting failure
  4. Setting big dreams and goals
  5. Going the extra mile
  6. Being kind and generous
  7. Having ambition
  8. Displaying courage
  9. Resilience and perseverance – as well as patience, especially when the going gets tough
  10. Having integrity

If you are going through an exceptionally hard time at the moment think of it this way.

You are being taught the skills necessary to succeed in the future. To reach your full potential and to achieve your dreams you need to know how to be resilient… and patient. Things will get better, the wheel will turn – but right now, much depends on how you react to the pain.

A great example is William Ernest Henley. He was an English poet in late Victorian England. He is most remembered for his 1875 poem “Invictus“. Invictus means unconquerable or undefeated in Latin. It is said that he wrote the poem while healing from having his leg amputated at the age of 16.

His poem is a reminder of the strength of the human spirit, of rising above, despite adversity. One always is in control of one’s own destiny and when a setback happens, very often fresh opportunities arise with it.

This famous poem reminds us to stay strong amidst pain and tragedy. That opportunity and new beginnings await, as long as we are able to grasp it, and as William Henley so nicely puts it:

“I am the master of my fate, the captain of my soul”

Here is his famous, inspirational poem:

I hope that, like William Henley, you remain undefeated as well.

Lots of love,


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