There are certain success attitudes, habits and disciplines in life that breeds success. Without these we have no chance of becoming successful. If we make sure we cultivate the success attitude, develop the right habits and follow the right plan with determination and persistence, we can and will be successful. Attitude is the power of success. Nothing can stop a person with the right positive attitude from achieving success.

Success Attitude: Decide what are your dreams

and your purpose.

You’ll be running on a hamster wheel forever if you never decide where you want to go. Figure out what’s meaningful to you so you can be who you were born to be. Don’t waste your life fulfilling someone else’s dreams and desires. You must follow your intuition and make a decision (Chernoff, 2014).

We must make sure we know where we want to go. If we do not know what our dreams are, we cannot follow them. We may have the right attitude and work hard towards attaining it, but if we are chasing the wrong dream, we will not succeed (Covey, 1994:23). If we follow the wrong map, working hard and with diligence will still bring us to the wrong destination (Covey, 1994:24).

We therefore need to decide what our purpose is, what our dreams are, what our goals are, what our ambitions are (Warren 2002:17). Purpose is the discovery of a reason for our existence (Munroe, 2005:224). Purpose leads to success because it provides an assignment for life and signals a sense of significance. Your purpose is the key to your passion and that drives your motivation that sustains your focus (Munroe, 2005:224). Your purpose is your mission in life, your reason for existing. It answers questions like who you are, what you are about. Your mission statement is the driving force that guides your goals and plans (Hellriegel, Jackson, Slocum, 1999:220; Senge, 1990:149).

What is meaningful to you in life?
Be sure what you want to achieve in life.

What is your Purpose in life?

Purpose leads to success

To find your purpose or dream, you need to find out what gives your life meaning (Munroe, 2005:29), where you want to go in life. You need to see it in your mind’s eye (Munroe, 2005:230).

One way to start delving into our dreams is to look at where we are in the fulfilment of our needs. Maslow stated that a person have 5 levels of need. He theorised that we first have to fulfil the most basic needs, level 1, before we can move on to the next level of needs. The first level is the physiological need for basic necessities such as food, clothing and shelter. Once we have these needs covered, we can move towards the second level, namely our security needs.  These are the need for safety and stability in our lives (Hellriegel, Jackson, Slocum, 1999:466).

The third level covers our need for affiliation.  These are our desires for friendship, love and belonging. On the fourth level, we face our esteem needs; the desire for self-respect, a sense of personal achievement and recognition from others. On this level we seek opportunities for achievement, promotion, prestige and status to symbolize our worth and competence. The last level is the level of self-actualisation, where we seek personal growth, self-fulfilment and the realisation of our full potential (Hellriegel, Jackson, Slocum, 1999:466).

Once you know what is important to you, you can decide where you want to go. You can discover the passion and desire that drives you (Munroe 2005:227, Senge 1990:141). Your mission and your vision of your future will give you the beacon towards which you have to keep moving. You may not find out what your mission or purpose is overnight; you might have to take a deep introspection, do some careful analysis of your needs, priorities, philosophy and values to determine what your mission is in life (Covey, 1994:129).

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.”
–  Anatole France

Success Attitude: Take control of your life and dreams.

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work”.– Colin Powell

The purpose or dream precedes the plans we make to achieve them (Munroe, 2005:244), but once we have a purpose, we need to start working on the plan to achieve it. Most people live their lives with no plan or map.  They are like strangers arriving in a new city, trying to find a certain house without road signs, a map or instructions. Finding it would be very much a matter of luck (Tracy, 2009, Covey, 1994:101).

This is the equivalent of starting off in life with no goals and plans. People often work for years and still are broke, unhappy, dissatisfied with their lives; waiting somehow for it to get better (Tracy, 2009).

But we are in control of our futures, our destiny. We are the only people who can help ourselves to become the people that we want to be. We become what we think about and if we do not think about our dreams, they will never happen. We have to take the initiative, we cannot wait for the future to come to us; we have to create it (Munroe, 2005:234).

Going out and taking the initiative means taking action, making decisions to start the process (Munroe, 2005:234). We need to be proactive and take responsibility to make things happen. We need to make the choice to be proactive (Covey, 1994:71; Senge, 1990:21). We have to choose to do something instead of waiting for something to happen. We have to look for solutions to problems, to do whatever (consistent with our principles) is necessary to chase our dreams (Covey, 1994:75). When we take action, we start and maintain our momentum towards our purpose (Munroe, 2005:236). 

  • Chernoff, Marc (2014): 12 Steps to make a dream a reality. [Online] Available from
  • Hellriegel, D., Jackson, S.E., Slocum, J.W. (1999): Management 8th South-Western College Publishing.
  • Covey, S.R. (1994): The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
  • Simon & Schuster. Hill, Napoleon (2011): Stepping Stones to Achievement. [Online] Available from http://www.succecom/article/from-the-archives-napoleon-hill.
  • Meyer, Paul J (2008): It’s All About Attitude. [Online] Available from, P.M. (1990): The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization. Random House.
  • Tracy, Brian (2009): Take Control of Your Dreams. [Online] Available from