A Fresh Perspective on Success: Follow this Formula

The following is an excerpt from the new book, Wait, What?! … The Success Formula for When Life Plays Out Differently Than You Expected by Emma Toops.

The #1 mistake people make in pursuing success is they think what they have or get is only directly due to their efforts alone.

This is a huge mistake because what we can control is only half of the picture (yourself). The other half is often outside of our control (the environment). Therefore, success relies on understanding what you can control (i.e., yourself and how you apply yourself) and influencing what you cannot (i.e., the environment in which you show up).

Regardless of how you may influence the environment, you must understand it and show up well in it to predict your outcomes. Is it surprising that success is based on approximately 12 percent technical knowledge and over 85 percent relationships?

Why do relationships matter so much to your success? You must work with others to create significant and enduring achievements or solve big problems, whether your results are personal or professional.

You don’t get to contribute to the extent you are capable if you don’t work well with others or are disliked. Even if your performance is technically flawless or subjectively perfect, you will not be successful if your interactions with people have negative emotional impacts, especially with evaluators or observers who contribute to your success.

What Gets in the Way of Your Success?

Have you ever noticed that everyone goes through periods where they get stuck on their path to a goal or in their daily routines because of random Hey, You or Oh, Shit stuff?

Hey, You moments are stuff like getting called out by Mom or Dad, a friend or colleague, or some adult (or even a child) with authority or influence over you to do a task or deliver on a request or requirement you didn’t already have in your plans for the day.

Oh, Shit moments are stuff like getting unexpected news or information that disrupts you in whatever you’re already doing. Or something makes a plan go sideways, like bad weather, unsynchronized or uncoordinated actions between concurrent players, an accident or health issue with you or another person, or a lack of crucial information that led you to misunderstand the full context of a given situation.

Most people have their usual way of handling these disruptive episodes in life, but how do some people seem to avoid or overcome them more quickly and get on to the next thing, while others seem to get stuck more often or stay stuck longer?

Do those who avoid the disruptions or get on to the next thing more quickly have some mysterious force working in their favor? Do those who get stuck more often or for longer periods need to do something better—more luck, influence, access to the right resources, or knowledge of the right people?

Well, sort of—but probably not in the way you might think.

Luck is merely planning that coincides with opportunity. Having more influence is based on relationships, but you factor into it to a large degree. More access to resources is partially about having the right relationships, but it can also be about how you apply your resources. Knowing the right people is absolutely through relationships.

What am I saying? Planning, relationships, and you are what it takes to get unstuck in life episodes and succeed. But it’s not exactly that simple. Despite this cryptic introduction, I will explain what I mean.

Throughout my life, I’ve realized that every success I’ve earned, every barrier I’ve encountered and overcome in the path of my pursuit of a goal, every unexpected Hey, You or Oh, Shit that has caused me to adjust my expectations or plans had me applying the steps of the Success Formula.

You are a significant contributor to the Success Formula. Context, relationships, and time are other components. The formula has only a few steps, but within each step are concepts that apply various elements based on the context of the situation, your mindset, relationships, access to resources, energy, actions, and time.

The Success Formula

1. Apply the Transition Puzzle Paradigm, a structured framework that helps focus your thinking, planning, and actions.

2. Commit to succeeding by having the right attitude.

3. Align yourself with people who enable your success.

4. Create an action plan using what you have right now.

5. Take continuous actions to gain clarity, make decisions, gain more resources, and adjust the plan as necessary.

6. Keep going.

I determined this Success Formula in my early twenties, though the original first step was to decide on a goal or objective. Decades later, when I had many more life experiences to consider, I realized that to do steps #2 through #6 more efficiently, there were other contributing components, which I now describe as the Transition Puzzle Paradigm.

Why Is Having a Paradigm Important?

According to dictionary.com, paradigm is a noun defined informally as “a general mental model or framework for anything.”

Generally, people are creatures of habit. Therefore, when you have a paradigm for a particular something, you are more efficient and purposeful in dealing with it because of the mental framework you already have. As you encounter obstacles or unexpected pop-ups that disrupt your path to success, having a Transition Puzzle Paradigm is similar to having a routine, but for how you think in your approach or response.

Having this routine means that even when something unexpected happens, you have a usual response process. What changes in what you do is based on the context of the situation, your resources, you, and time.

“Live and learn” is a great way to develop, retain lessons, and figure things out, but unfortunately, it’s freaking slow! Often, the many disruptions in our life journey (whether by our choices, other’s choices, or things entirely out of our control) might have been avoided, wasted less time and energy, or mitigated negative consequences if we were better planners, were more resourceful, or merely asked for help or guidance from expert or experienced folks in the first place.

I’ve repeatedly applied this success formula to overcome many challenges, whether I had planned out goals and objectives or if things happened unexpectedly. Despite the many disruptions to my plans and expectations, I have been successful in life, school, career, and business because of intentionality and purpose when I encountered periods of change.

About Emma Toops

Emma is a retired Army Major who served on active duty for almost eighteen years. During that time, she was assigned to various locations in the United States, overseas in South Korea and Germany, and deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Since her military retirement in 2013, she and her husband, David, have lived in Greater Kansas City. They are entrepreneurs in the knowledge industry and are actively involved in the business and military support communities.

Since 2017, Toops Consulting LLC has served students and adults in academic or career transition to achieve greater confidence and purposeful pursuit of goals by providing instruction, sharing stories for perspective and examples, and offering coaching, consulting, and other resources.

She and David enjoy solving logic problems and jigsaw puzzles, adventuring in computer games, and exploring new foods, drinks, and cultures. They also continue to playfully disagree that there is such a thing as too much chocolate or frosting.

Connect with Emma Toops:

Learn about us and connect with me through our website.

Website: https://www.toopsconsulting.com

Connect with me on LinkedIn.


Contact me via email. I’d love to hear from you.

Email: emma@toopsconsulting.com

On the Web, Visit: www.LetsGrowLeaders.com

Or, Find the book on Amazon.com

Available for Media Interviews.

Contact: Jo Allison with Media Ambassadors

Phone: 917-207-1039

Email: Jo@MediaAmbassadors.com

Website: http://www.MediaAmbassadors.com

Media Contact
Company Name: Media Ambassadors
Contact Person: Jo Allison
Email: Send Email
Country: United States
Website: https://www.MediaAmbassadors.com

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