What Superachievers Have in Common


This post is The Art of Doing inspired. The first of several to come.

The Art of Doing showcases 36 people of all different professions and lifestyles. It seeks to profile each person, describe what they do and how they do it so well. I initially found out about this book through BlogcastFM. I listened on my smart phone as Srini, the host and founder of the show, interviewed the authors, Camille Swiney and Josh Gosfield. They offer a unique perspective because they are well established journalists, working for publications such as The New York Times and New York Magazine. I grew more and more excited as the interview went on. By the time it was over I was walking down the street to a book store to pick it up. What can I say? Passionate people turn me on. I had to get the book and learn about the girl who sailed solo around the world, the guy who has created an award winning company culture, and the gentleman who is renowned for window displays.

Design always matters.

Design always matters.

So what do superachievers have in common?? I desperately wanted to know! And what does that have to do with my blog?

Let us begin.

As I opened the bright yellow cover of this exhilarating book, I dove into the depths of the introduction. The authors began to unveil their secrets immediately. Instant gratification! How satisfying. In It’s All in the Blanket fashion, the first paragraph picks up multiple threads and weaves them together:

“We were often surprised to discover how much a tennis champion, for instance, and a rock band think alike, or how a race car driver and an extraterrestrial hunter share similar traits. Our participants’ vocations, goals, philosophical perspectives and personalities could not have been more different, but as their responses to our questions accumulated, we began to see patterns. We came to realize that these extraordinary people shared many core principles and practices that had led to their great successes.”

I like to think that this blog is attempting to do just this. Here, I attempt to illustrate the connections of experiences, theories, and people to demonstrate how it is all interconnected. We are a system of systems. We are one. So, the introduction goes on to outline the ten most important strategies of their chosen superachievers, expressing to the reader that it hopes to inspire reflection on your own work habits and approach to life. They are as follows:

  1. Dedication
  2. Intelligent Persistence
  3. Community
  4. Listening
  5. Telling a Story
  6. Testing
  7. Managing Emotions
  8. Evolving
  9. Patience
  10. Happiness

These are the 10 most essential strategies that successful people apply to their lives in order to achieve their greatest goals. Reflecting on them now, I think of my core desired feelings. In my day to day life I seek feelings of clarity, connection, creativity, and power. Applying your core values and natural attributes to the list above is a potent combination. So what really separates the best from the rest? What stops you from doing your best?

Make a statement.

Make a statement.