Why you need to be consistent if you want to be successful

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Kevin Mangelschots

Have you ever wondered what the hidden key to success is?

It’s not just being intelligent, hardworking and being good at social networking. However, all of those things are obviously of tremendous importance.

Rather, I would say that the hidden ingredient is consistency. If you want to be successful, be consistent.

Let me explain why consistency and success go hand in hand.

Why consistency is the key to success

Two keys lying on a blanket.

A common argument that comes up is whether discipline or motivation is more essential to achieve success.

I argue that consistency is the key to success. It sounds simple when I put it like this, but to be consistent with your efforts is actually quite hard in actual practice.

  • Consistency allows us to reach our goals, especially those that are long-term

    No matter how intelligent and hardworking you are, to become successful at something, we will need to put in considerable work hours and effort for a prolonged period of time. Especially if we want to become successful at starting your own company or something similar. Goals that typically take a long time to achieve.

    This is where consistency comes into play. When our motivation starts to dwindle, and make no mistake, it eventually will, it is up to our good habits which will keep us consistent to get us through.

    I would say that consistency enhances all our other attributes. Attributes like intelligence, being hardworking and being good at social networking are multiplied by how consistent we are.

  • Consistency guarantees quality

     

    An illustration with a blue stick man going over the word “quality” with a magnifying glass.

    Just because you’ve made it to the top doesn’t mean you’ll get to stay there forever for free or at all. Remember, the wolf on top of the hill is not as hungry as the wolf climbing the hill. And there are other people out there constantly chasing success.

    To guarantee continued success, one must guarantee the same quality that he/she used to become prosperous.

    Quality also refers to the fact that you shouldn’t spread yourself too thin. That’s because trying to do too many things at once leads to a decrease in performance. Quite obviously, this doesn’t result in success.

How can I become more consistent?

Image of the words “be consistent” written on a green background.

Figure out your own motivation

Not only can figuring out other people’s intentions help you in your life, understanding your own motivation for wanting to make a positive change in your life is important as well.

Questions such as, “why do I want to become more consistent” and “what will happen if I don’t become more consistent in the near and distant future” are all significant for figuring out your own motivation for wanting change.

I would say, though that generally, increasing consistency is a good thing. Knowing why you want to change this steadiness for the better will help light a much-needed fire under one’s behind.

Make a schedule

Goal, plan, action text on light box on desk table in home office. Business motivation or inspiration, performance of human concepts ideas.

We can all learn to become more consistent over time if we adhere to a schedule.

Let’s face it. We human beings are terrible at negotiating with ourselves. Even though we have the capacity to organize our day the way we want, we still often get very few things done that we know we should do. Furthermore, we are frequently unsatisfied with our own schedule, even after we’ve created it ourselves. Isn’t that weird?

That’s why we need to make a purposeful schedule that we can actually agree and be satisfied with. Because changing our habits takes time and a conscious effort. Our schedule will serve as a plan, a tool to guide us that persists over time in order to get us to our end goal, which is more consistency.

Furthermore, a planning gives us a feeling of necessity. Sometimes, a little pressure from our own schedule or from other people are all we need to complete our task(s). If you want an example of this, just take a look at how many people refrain from going to the gym on their own, yet still go fairly consistently when there’s a friend who’s constantly dragging them along.

Be conscious of the positive changes you’ve made at first

Illustration of a brain.

Habits that you’ve spent a lifetime creating will not be easily persuaded, broken, or changed for that matter.

Even if we desire to change certain habits, like becoming more consistent, our body and mind unbeknownst to us strives for homeostasis. It means that we unconsciously maintain our current habits because we’ve been doing them for so long that they’ve become and feel natural to us.

That’s why we have to be mindful of the changes we make at first. Be mindful of the positive changes you are making in your life.

Give yourself a pat on the back when doing well

The quote “take care of yourself” written in blue letters on a napkin.

Since consistency breeds success, it’s essential that we maintain the required motivation, discipline, and mindset to keep grinding.

There are two things we can do to change behavior, rewarding and punishing.

Punishing can for example be in the form of, “I’m not playing any video games until I’ve made my homework”, while rewarding for example can look like, “I’ve hit the gym four times this week like I said I would, so now I get a little treat as a reward.”

We are often times hard for ourselves. Sometimes even unnecessary hard. We can be our own harshest critiques indeed. It’s good to remind ourselves from time to time that we also need to take the time to give ourselves a pat on the back when we’re doing well. We are all deserving of a little positivity, certainly from ourselves, for our hard work.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

What does being consistent mean?

Illustration of a man scratching their head while holding a yellow question mark.

Being consistent can be defined as doing or acting the same way over prolonged periods of time.

It means that your actions remain the same quality and keep unchanged accuracy. In other words, similar behavior to your previously displayed conduct.

Final note

Image of the word, “conclusions” written on a black backboard with white chalk.

Consistency is the key to success. Sounds easy enough, right? However, in reality, it is actually not that simple.

People have multiple motivational systems working at the same time. One part of you wants the immediate, short term gratification in the form of a reward, while another part of you wants to be lazy and do absolutely nothing. Another part of you knows and wants you to delay the instant gratification that’s necessary in order to become successful.

Success is not just material wealth like is often portrayed in the media. One can become successful at everything one puts his/her mind to if they decide to be consistent.