22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful, Positive People

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22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People

Over the course of my life I have been fortunate enough to meet quite a few amazingly successful people. Every single one of these people have a different definition of success. For some it is balance, while for others it is becoming rich, or influential, or having a good family life, or avoiding “the man” altogether. Whatever their view of success is, they do it marvelously, and better yet they enjoy what they do. Interestingly enough after years of knowing these people I have seen a common thread evolve in how they run their lives, no matter what their end goal may be.

1. They Smile

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A girl holding a colorful umbrella smiling.

Photo: Daniel Park

Smiling has so many positive benefits that I couldn’t possibly ignore this one. In fact I had to put it first, because successful people tend to be happy people, and happy people smile! Some of the benefits of smiling include: boosting your immune system, reducing blood pressure, and attracting other people to you. Smiling is contagious.

2. They Take Control Over Their Thought Life

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A man sitting on a window sill looking out at grey skies.

Photo by: Freddie Marriagehttps://stocksnap.io/author/29364

This is a big one. Positive people are not exempt from bad moments, mornings and days. They too can get slammed with negative thoughts and the giant temptation to dive into the pool of self-pity. However, the difference is they choose not to. They will take that thought and get rid of it anyway they can. Some get rid of these thoughts through visualization, others through prayer, others still by taking their focus off themselves, or getting outdoors, or getting a fresh perspective from a friend. The thing about highly successful, positive people is that they refuse to stay in a place of negativity because they know the laws of attraction and what they focus on increases. Thus they work as hard as it takes to never stay in a negative place.

3. They are Grateful

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A Woman Smiling Holding her hands together in gratitude.

Photo by: Unsplash

Gratitude is key in both becoming successful and positive. Nothing ushers in the feel goods faster than making a list of what you’re thankful for. Some of the most successful people I know make a list every day of 5 or 10 things that they are grateful for before they go to bed. Gratitude is great for keeping those negative thoughts away and helping stay focused on what’s really important.

4. They Know how to Quiet Themselves

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A woman sitting watching the water as the sun sets.

Photo by: Freestocks.org

In a very loud and overstimulating world it has become even more important to be able to quiet your soul. Through meditation, prayer, quiet solitude, coloring, deep breathing or any other number of means it is absolutely vital to make sure that the chaos in the world does not overtake what’s inside us. Successful, positive people know how important it is to stay steady and grounded when the winds of confusion and overwhelm start to blow.

5. They Focus on Others

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A woman surrounded by children smiling and making funny faces.

I cannot express how key this is. Selfishness is a sure-fire way to end up unhappy. I’ve seen it time and time again. Successful, positive people take their focus off themselves and put it on others. They enjoy the company of other people and look for ways to be kind and generous where they can.

6. They get Outside

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | The back of a woman as she stares out across the desert.

The great outdoors is such a great place to clear the mind and get creative juices flowing. Successful and positive people spend some time outdoors to get fresh inspiration. You never know what million dollar idea might just pop up during the next hike or surf session!

7. They Take Care of Their Bodies

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A woman holding dumbbells looking in the mirror.

Photo by: Scott Webb

I can’t stress this one enough. It is so important to take care of ourselves. Eating the right food, getting enough sleep, and exercise are all pivotal in being successful and positive in the long-term. Sure it may seem like no big deal when you’re 20, but when you’re 60 you’ll be glad you took the time to invest in yourself.

8. They Set Boundaries

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A hand drawing a line in the sand.

This can be a hard one to do sometimes, but successful, positive people set boundaries. The reason being is not everyone is going to celebrate in your success and will try to drag you down to their level so they can feel better about themselves. Avoid these people! You are worth people who cheer in your successes and encourage you in your failures.

9. They Laugh

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A man and woman sitting in overgrown grass having a good laugh.

Photo by: Priscilla Westra

Laughter is as good for the soul as smiling is. Having a good laugh regularly has been proven to help lower stress as well as stimulate your organs, not to mention the feeling of empowerment. Nothing brings strength and courage quite as fast as a good ol belly laugh.

10. They Look for Different Perspectives

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | Looking up at the tops of skyscrapers with the sky peeking through at the top.

Photo by: Rikki Chan

To quote Big Hero 6, “Shake things up! Use that big brain of yours to think your way out! Look for a new angle.” So many times the answer is right in front of us we just have to change our perspective a bit and it magically appears.

11. They Enjoy Challenges

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A woman doing rock climbing.

Photo by: Unsplash

I once was talking to a WWII Airforce pilot. God bless him, he was 94 at the time and looked better than most 60 year olds. He told me that there are never obstacles, only opportunities. Successful, positive people look forward to challenges because it spurs them on to a new level of greatness. There is a newer and greater world on the opposite side of that challenge and it can be great fun to figure out how to get there. Nothing in life worth having ever comes easy.

12. They Look for the Best in People

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A man taking a picture of two friends on their phone.

Photo by: David Cumming

I had a wise friend tell me that whenever she has a friend do something that might strike her as insensitive she says, “That’s not her/his heart.” and it helps to defuse the situation for her. Now I’m not saying that people don’t do mean things, but more often than not when it is those close to us I think it is usually a simple misunderstanding. Remember their heart toward you and give them grace. Clarify if need be, but don’t let little things destroy your relationships. See people for where they are at, but really highlight the good. This will make them feel so empowered to be that amazing person you see!

13. They are Slow to Offense

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | An old man having a good laugh in a newspaper shop.

Photo by: Johann Walter Bantz

In a world where there is a seemingly endless line of offended people, be the one to shrug things off. Offense gets you nowhere. Action does. Successful, positive people don’t allow themselves to settle for being offended because they are too busy making life better for themselves and everyone around them.

14. They Take Joy in the Little Things

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A woman holding her sleeping baby.

Take joy in those little moments each day that bring you joy. Focus on them and be grateful for them. Even in the worst of times they are still there, sometimes we have to search a little harder for them, but they are so worth it when we realize them.

15. They Keep Things Simple

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A laptop, notebook, and pen.

Photo by: Starter Stockup Photos

Whether it’s simplicity of design, relationships, speech, etc. There is almost always something major that is just kept simple. No added drama or clutter, just clean and simple. For me, I don’t like knick knacks. It stresses me out to have them all over the place, I prefer a more minimalist approach to my home. I also don’t like games in relationships. I’m very much a what you see is what you get person, simple.

16. They Manage Their Time Well

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A man checking his watch.

Photo by: Luca Bravo

Time management is so key in being both successful and remaining positive. It’s a terrible feeling to have to rush at the last-minute to get something done. While sometimes that is unavoidable, successful, positive people tend to know their priorities and put those things at the top of the list to ensure they are properly attended to. Keeping a calendar, schedule, and/or to-do list are great ways to help with time management!

17. They are Solid in Their Identity

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A man standing on the edge of a cliff with his arms out looking at a green valley.

Photo by: Julian Jagtenberg

Out of everything that I have seen successful, positive people do this  is hands down the biggest one! They know who they are and are proud of that. They don’t try to people please, but rather attract the right people to themselves by just being them. Lastly, they don’t try to fit in with the crowd, but instead love standing out. Mean spirited comments and snide remarks roll off their back and they keep going because they know the value that they bring to the world, and that anchors them.

18. They are Constantly Learning

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A person walking through rows of books.

Photo by: Redd Angelo

There is always something new to learn, some way to get better, something to evolve in. One of the best ways to stay ahead of the curve is to always be learning. You can learn something from everyone, even if it’s what not to do. Those at the top of their game are willing to be flexible and learn and move with the trends.

19. They Take Care of Their Possessions

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A black and white chessboard.

Photo by: Jez Timms

Successful, positive people take pride in the things that they own and because of that they take care of them. It is hard to be inspired and creative when you’re surround with broken and cruddy stuff. It doesn’t have to be brand new. I’ve known people who go for the antique, vintage look, but they take care of it.

20. They Think Before Speaking and Acting

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | One woman speaking into the ear of another.

Photo by: Katie Treadway

Think before you speak, and treat others as you’d like to be treated. These two golden rules reign supreme in the lives of successful and positive people. There are not careless words and they always treat others will honor and respect. Even when they are dealing with someone they don’t like they tend to take the high ground and make the best of every situation.

21. They Value Beauty

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A bush of purple Lantana flowers.

Photo by: Lauren Roberts

Beauty inspires. It pleases the senses, puts us at peace, and spurs on inventive creativity. Beauty can be found anywhere, you just have to look. Oftentimes a design can originate from a simple flower, or a new business idea can come from people watching. Being open to beauty in its various forms allows for a more joyful and adventure-filled life.

22. They Know What They Want

22 Life-Changing Habits of Highly Successful Positive People | A person making a list.

Photo by: Glenn Carstens-Peters

Last but not least, they know what they want. It is so easy to just drift through life never defining any goals or motivations, but there is a thrill in getting closer and closer to that dream. There is an even greater joy in achieving goals and getting to dream new dreams.

Successful, positive people come in all shapes and sizes. They are in all arenas of life. You know them when you see them though. They are the people who you are instantly drawn to, the ones you find yourself wanting to emulate. There is a different light coming through them and it is bright and affects everyone around them.


  1. I love this post! Right up my street. You made some very good points about how successful people think and act. My favourites are how successful people take control of their life (rather than complain), how they are grateful, and how they keep things simple. And…successful people certainly know what they want.

  2. Love positive & inspiring articles they’re always awesome reminders to keep me going in the right direction!

  3. “They think before they speak” This is important in everyone’s life because words once they are spoken cannot be taken back.

    Keep up the good work!
    Best wishes,

  4. Great ones! I try to really smile as often as I can. Smiling seems to be contagious. Being positive starts from within. When we feel happy, good things seem to happen.

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