These things don’t cost you anything.

Be on time. I heard the great John Wooden say once if a player was late he would tell them that means you are either incompetent or you don’t care and I don’t want either of those. Some personalities have a harder time with this than others but that doesn’t make it any less true. I’ve employed many people over the years. The ones you can count on to be on time are the best ones. I’ve had people working for me who would not get to work until ten minutes after they were supposed to. Get up earlier if you have to or make arrangements that need to be made. Most of the time it isn’t the time-frame you have to work with it’s a discipline issue. I know people who get up earlier and are still late. Be disciplined

Work hard. Always give everything you do your best effort. My Dad used to say, "If you don’t have time to do it right you better have time to do it twice". Excellence is a mindset. Decide when you start something that you will do it with excellence and finish it.

Be positive. An optimist is simply someone who thinks positively. Their first thought is usually good. Don’t allow your mindset to control you, you control it. Nothing good ever came from negative thinking.

Body language. Keep your chin up. There is an answer for every problem you face. Have the attitude that you will make it through whatever comes your way. Smile a lot. Make people ask you what you’re smiling about. Don’t let your circumstances rule you, you rule them. Always walk with your head held high and your chest up.

Passion. I guarantee that you are able to talk yourself into anything. In fact, you are an expert at it. You can talk yourself into watching movies all day or playing video games all day and making every excuse in the book to accommodate that. Talk yourself into being passionate. Care deeply about the right things in your life. Put your energy in the right places. Develop a passion for life. Read, research and put effort into making your life powerful and valuable. Make yourself someone who the people around you want to emulate.

Be teachable. Always listen. Do twice as much listening as you do talking. I’ve found that you can learn from anyone and anything. It takes an attitude of gathering. You get up in the morning ready to gather as much information about the things you are involved with as possible. Even little children can teach you if you’re open to that. They are innocent and direct and can see truth without a filter.

Do extra. Be the one who does the most. I always taught my kids that you don’t have to work super hard you just need to work steady. I will take a steady worker every time. They almost always get more done. It reminds me of the tortoise and the hare. Slow and steady wins the race almost every time.

Be prepared. Always be ready. The motto of the Boy Scouts is “Be Prepared”. That means be ready for anything. You don’t know what’s going to happen today, tomorrow or next week but you can always be ready to be on time, to work hard, to be positive, to keep your chin up and smile, to be passionate, to be teachable and do extra. 

Photo provided by: Photo by Martin Shreder on Unsplash