5 habits of unsuccessful people

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5 habits of unsuccessful people

People’s habits, whether good or bad, can significantly influence their actions, thoughts and ultimately determine one’s success or failure in life. These habits serves as automated programs which perform the work of dictating one’s behavior without one even being conscious of his actions.

As the wise man Aristotle said which I quote, “We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act but a habit.” From this quote from Aristotle, the importance of people cultivating good, positive habits which will guarantee good and successful life is easy to deduce. Bad habits has a huge significant impact in the lives of individuals.

They can negatively affect our happiness and limit chances of success. These habits are rather difficult to break or get rid off and if one
is not careful enough, these habits can tuned into one’s mindset, thereby rendering one useless and unsuccessful. Unsuccessful people are rather held back by these bad habits and never seem to progress in life due to these habits acting as invisible chains that hold them back. The repetition of these habits by most unsuccessful people creates a zone of comfort round them, making them more resistant to
growth and immediate change.

In this article, we have identified five habits of unsuccessful people that one should avoid at all costs if one intends to be successful.

5 bad habits of unsuccessful people

Fear of failure

This is attributed to be one of the most popular excuses most unsuccessful people give and it’s one of the bad habits of unsuccessful people, ‘fear of failure.’ Fear of failure in the simplest language, is the inability to take risks. This trait can be noticed in virtually all unsuccessful people, as they prefer to play safe and stick to ideas that has been tried and tested by others.

This fear is often manifested as a crippling force that prevents one from taking steps needed towards implementing set goals. This is usually evident when one’s mind is preoccupied with the potential setbacks or negative outcomes of a certain task. This extreme worry can prove to be strong enough to keep the individual rooted in his comfort zone, with him taking little to no actions on the way forward.

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When one is too afraid to take risks, it traps the individual in his current state, restricts his vision and one is never going to be able to achieve anything of huge significance. It can be likened to this scenario when an extremely hungry person is trapped in a room with a key In his hand, but being too afraid to open the door.

If he doesn’t open the door soon enough, he risks dying from hunger. One should always remind himself that failure is just a part of success, as almost every successful person has experience failure on their journey to eventual success. It should be noted that, taking calculated risks is important for success as it encourages new innovations and builds a resilient mindset.

One should should identify his fear and face it head on, if one fails or experiences a setback, he should be able to retry with different methods of approach for higher chances of success. Failure should be seen as a stepping stone which should motivate and propel you more towards your set goals rather than the stumbling block that is seen to many unsuccessful people.

Lack of self-discipline

This is another common bad habit which is common amongst unsuccessful people. This attribute is something most people in general somehow struggle with due to the fact that requires a great deal of conscious effort coupled with self control and consistency. Lack of discipline can hinder people from moving forward and achieving substantial progress in life.

When people are not disciplined, they are easily distracted from their goals, and will rather focus their time and energy on other useless things rather than channel it into realizing their set goals.

There is need for one to imbibe self-discipline , as it serves as the bridge between set goals and its actualization, which without most ambitious dreams will just remain dreams. Every individual that wants to be successful should recognize the habit and take adequate steps towards developing self discipline as it is very pivotal for success.

Sad tennis player sitting in the court after losing a match – Picture credit: freepik


Procrastination is the process of delaying or postponing certain tasks, plans or action that should be done immediately or at a specified date to a later time. Unsuccessful people are prone to fall into the trap of procrastination as they tend to delay plans, tasks, push deadlines, postpone meetings. They convince themselves that they will do it tomorrow, next week or at a later time without them being
aware that each moment wasted is an opportunity lost.

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Research has shown that the habit is developed subtly over time, starting with occasional postponement of minor task or plans before it turns to a very toxic habit that can hinder productivity and reduce progress The funny thing about this procrastination problem is that it is not only by one being lazy or time mismanagement, but some people use it as a defense mechanism against taking risks
or the failure of doing a task perfectly.

This bad habit of postponing tasks and plans when left unchecked, can lead to a pile up of accumulated work which ends up creating more anxiety and stress for the individuals. The pile up of tasks to be done and decisions to be made hence becomes a constant source of worry and stress which hinders productivity and progress of the affected person.

One should address the habit before it becomes a stumbling block in one’s journey towards success. Adequate awareness can also aid one in the fight against the habit and help one move towards a more productive life.


This is when an individual only looks at the negative aspects of things or from a bad perspective. Unsuccessful individual often shroud their minds with negativity. This can be through negative thoughts, association with negative people or being in a negative environment which can have a high impact on one’s mindset. Unsuccessful people fail to realize that by surrounding or associating themselves with
negativity, they are hindering their own progress.

People when trapped in a cycle of pessimism, find it hard to see breakthrough solutions or even potential opportunities. . They would rather see the glass as half empty as compared to optimists who would see it as as half full. Pessimism is extremely harmful to achieving success as one is obsessed with finding faults and problems with his ideas which can hinder self motivation. What people don’t know is
that by being negative and focusing on the problems rather than creating the solutions, one is setting oneself for eventual disappointment.

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One can help overcome pessimism by always consciously choosing positivity, focusing on one’s strengths and viewing challenges as an opportunity for growth. One should cut off from negative friends and can even go for counselling. This will better improve one’s mindset and help increase one’s chances of being successful.

Lack of set goals and vision

Most unsuccessful people struggle to succeed due to lack of vision of set goals. Their lack of vision cause them to drift aimlessly, with a lack of sense of motivation, causing them to make little to no substantial progress in any area of their life. It can be compared to sailing a ship or riding a bicycle without any particular destination. One is just likely to waste his time driving.

Hence, it is essential to have a clear vision and already set goals. This is because it provides a mapwork of what you have to do to actualize your goals and how to make the best decisions that aligns with them. Having a clear vision helps to direct and focus one’s efforts towards your set goals and helps one to keep track of his progress.

In conclusion, to be successful, you must be determined and intentional. Success doesn’t fall from heaven, you have to earn it. You must be determined to get yourself up, get new education, new skills, new friends and also strategize on how you can position yourself for greatness. If finance is your challenge, you might want to start your journey to success by registering as a freelance on skillhut.xyz. STAY DETERMINED.


Author Since: November 16, 2023

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