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A Shot of Espresso: 5 Skills to Jumpstart Your Success

Welcome to my new column “A Shot of Espresso” where I share quick tips to jumpstart your day towards success. An Espresso is a concentrated form of coffee served in small, strong shots and is the base for a number of coffee drinks. It's made from the same beans as coffee but is stronger, thicker, and higher in caffeine.

Today’s espresso shot includes 5 skills that anyone who desires to be successful must develop. Incorporate these skills into your strategy for success and you’ll move forward quicker than you ever dreamed!

1. Learn to hustle

Generally, people who make it big have one thing in common—they are dissatisfied with the status quo. They will not take what is “common” or “expected” and let that define their lives—they move past it and excel. You must work hard and hustle.

"Hustle beats talent when talent doesn't hustle." - Jesse Tolbert

2. Build great character

Someone coined the phrase, “character is what you do in the dark.” In other words, when no one is looking, will you behave differently than if someone was looking? If not, then you have character. If you are attacked, be tough—not hard. Don’t be a pushover, but be compassionate, gentle, and flexible—in both procedure and principle.

"Character is like a tree and reputation is like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing." - Abraham Lincoln

3. Start taking risks

This isn’t gambling, it’s a willingness to be bold, hearty, and to push forward. People who refuse to take risks are going to lose. If you refuse a new promotion because you’re not confident of your skills, you will likely be passed over when a different chance arrives.

Don’t be afraid of rejection, just take it as part of life and you’ll find there’s nothing to be afraid of, especially in the word “no.” “No” is just another opportunity to find a way around an obstacle and to use creative problem-solving skills.

“If you opt for a safe life, you will never know what it's like to win.” - Richard Branson

4. Be on time, show up early

We all know that one minute has 60 seconds and that one hour has 60 minutes. One day has 24 hours, and one year has 365 days. But one year also has 525,600 minutes. We don’t think about a year in such small increments, but maybe we should. We waste minutes as if they’ll always be around and the fact is that time wasted is time we can never get back. We might miss a deal or promotion of a lifetime by wasting just a few minutes.

Proper time management is essential as you climb to success. Continue to break goals down into manageable chunks — do that with relation to your day and the time you’ve been given. You’ll accomplish far more this way and you won’t regret using your time wisely.

"Better three hours too soon, than one minute too late." - William Shakespeare

5. Master non-verbal communication

It is said that our body language and facial expressions do much more communicating than our words will ever do. When the words that you speak don’t match the expressions on your face or the stance of your body, you confuse the listener and muddle your message.

Be aware that when you try to multitask, you often end up short-changing something and the last thing you want is to short-change people. Don’t try to do too much at once — your willingness to do this tells people they aren’t important, even if you’re expressing your appreciation of their work and effort. Be aware of what message your body is sending off!

"People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude." - John C. Maxwell

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