“Seize every opportunity along the way, for how sad it would be if the road you chose became the road not taken.” 

~ Robert Brault

It seems so straightforward, but the path to success rarely feels that way does it? It is about a few simple disciplines for sure. Doing the freakin’ work if you will… and for that you need the right things to be in place, and you need to avoid doing the wrong things. For the most part anyway.

I’ve been thinking a lot about success lately; why some people seem to find it at high levels while others struggle. So I asked a simple question on my Facebook Page: What is it that holds people back from experiencing higher levels of success in their work and life? One thing?

Watch the video below, or read the blog post that follows.

There’s no singular answer to this question, and many of the responses didn’t surprise me, but the speed and enthusiasm of the responses suggested to me that it’s something we all think about. So, what gets in the way of success?

Here’s what some of my followers shared:

Lack of confidence (like 8 times)

Self doubt (at least 6 times)

Lack of tenacity. People give up too soon.

Lack of focus and direction

Believing the opinions of others


Family history


Beliefs, past and present self-limiting beliefs


Not holding yourself accountable

Fear (of success, failure, rejection, commitment)

Time management

Judgement from others

Rigid self-identity and the belief that we can’t change (or get more out of life).

Lack of adaptability

Our own inhibitions, not knowing our own value

Lack of time to do the work, lack of resourcefulness, lack of courage

Bad time-wasting habits

Auto-pilot, an unwillingness to leave that comfort zone

And one of my friends even posted his response with this image. True Grit (or lack of it)! Yup, that too. And the responses are still coming in. How many of these success limiting scenarios can you identify with? I humbly admit that I have come up against every single one of them at some point, and still work through many of them on the regular. That’s life I suppose. But maybe it doesn’t have to be?

So, it goes back to the question, why do some people find success at high levels while others struggle?

To me, success is built on four non-negotiable cornerstones that will provide a solid foundation and guiding posts for growth. Success will come easier if you embrace all four:

  • Clarify direction: Set powerful personal and professional goals that give you focus, feed your purpose, and get you excited to do the work.
  • Strengthen discipline: Identify the stand-out productivity habits you need for big-picture success in all you do; what’s working, what you should add in, and what you need to subtract.
  • Sharpen mindset: Hone your mental muscle to boost self-confidence, positive attitude and grit, so you can stay focused and do the work you know you need to do.
  • Prioritize health: Nurture mental, physical and emotional health as non-negotiable components that fuel your success-energy strategy.

If any one of these cornerstones is missing or weak, success will be harder to grasp. In fact, the above responses create those missing or weak links. When you embrace all four, the barriers slowly disappear or become easier to navigate because you know what you need to do, you know how you need to do it, you know how to own it, and your know how to fuel the journey. That’s Success-Energy and it’s worth exploring. In the weeks to come I’ll dig deeper with each cornerstone, and talk about how to push those success barriers aside and get the work done.

Before I do that, I’d love to know the success hurdle you’d most like to get over. What holds you back from better? And, what’s one thing you’re already crushing on the road to success? Share in the comments below, or send me a note.

Until next time, I’m Michelle Cederberg helping you transform your work and life, one Success-Energy idea, at a time.

Michelle Cederberg, MKin, BA Psyc

Certified Speaking Professional (CSP)
Certified Exercise Physiologist (CEP)
Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC)
ORSC Trained Team Coach


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