Why some people with the smarts to succeed never DO
Life’s been a long exciting trip, and its taken me to a lot of interesting places: law school at Yale with Hillary Rodham Clinton; speech writing at the White House for Richard Nixon; preparing stock prospectuses on Wall Street; and for the past 18 years, writing and acting in Hollywood.
I’ve watched many successful people at work and at play.—powerhouses such as Ron Perelman, billionaire owner of Revlon, and Norman Lear, one of television’s greatest producers; actors such as Nicholas Cage, who’s struggled to the top.
But, I also know many who haven’t made it—–shining stars from my college years who sell shirts; computer hotshots who now deliver pizzas; former studio executives who peddle 900 phone numbers for modest pay; math geniuses who fix pipes in rotting apartment buildings. Like them, all too many people have the smarts to succeed but never do.
Why do some count their money while others curse their unpaid bills? Of course, luck has a role, sometimes. But, usually people make their own bad luck by regularly getting trapped in self-defeating attitudes and shoot-yourself-in-the-foot behavior.
Here are some of the worst traps. I call them the “Eight Habits of Really Unsuccessful People.”