Habits of Highly Successful Women

Updated: Jan 20

1. Starting The Day Early -

It is well-known that successful people start their day early. This allows them to make use of a few additional hours in the morning to plan their goals for the day, exercise, staying informed on current events and markets. Our favourite and recommended channel to watch, whilst having that essential morning coffee, is Bloomberg.

2. Keeping Written Tasks & Goals -

Keeping all your tasks and goals written down and staying focused helps keep your accountable and organised. Furthermore, by understanding what your goals are, you can then decided what needs to be prioritised. This in turn helps you with effective time management, which plays a key role in being successful.

3. Continuous Self-Improvement -

Successful women are always looking for ways to improve, to gain a competitive edge. This can be done through a variety of ways. Knowledge is power, and a successful woman knows that in order to succeed in life, you need to be well educated. It is important to do research and read up on unfamiliar topics.

According to Pew Research, the typical American reads about four books a year. Billionaires and entrepreneurs like Bill Gates are not average, or even above-average which, according to the Pew Research, means a person reads up to 17 books a year. No, Bill Gates reads 50 books a year, or about one book per week. .

Making an effort to stay informed and to learn new things is vital to stay ahead of the curve. Books offer a fresh perspective which can easily be lost when you are consistently bombarded by the media, or your friends inundating your social media feeds with the issue of the hour. It becomes harder to take a step back and see the world from a historical perspective or to understand broader trends. In addition, books can help awaken your imagination.

Reading stories, whether they be real-life or fictional, can inspire us to dream bigger and push ourselves further. Check out the Forbes articles on 10 Life-Changing Books Every Woman Needs To Read At Least Once. Lastly, books build better communicators. Leadership requires storytelling. Learning how to effectively tell a compelling story or listening to one with empathy can help improve leadership qualities.  

All of this information has been backed by scientific research. In 2009, Carnegie Mellon scientists discovered that reading actually rewires the brain. Writing in the journal Neuron, the scientists found that reading increased the quality of white matter, the brain tissue that carries signals between areas of gray matter, where information is processed. By improving the "integrity" of the white matter, subjects were able to communicate better and express their ideas with more eloquence. Accomplished entrepreneurs and business leaders are giving the same advice over and over: Read more books than average and you'll be more successful than average.

4. Perseverance In The Face Of Adversity -

Successful women to not allow the fear of failure to stop them from taking a risk and trying new things. A willingness to take risks is one of the biggest qualities that set CEOs apart from other executives, so keeping yourself reaching and pushing your limits is important.

5. Knowing It Is A Balancing Act -

Although successful women are hustlers, they also know when it’s time to unwind and rejuvenate after a long workday. Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo, believes that you "cannot have it all", personally and professionally all the time, and you must learn to cope with the sacrifice. You cannot take care of everyone else without taking care of yourself first, and successful women put this into practice.

Practicing self-care, is essential for both your mental and physical well-being. Whether you do this through meditation, yoga, journaling, walking, etc., it will allow you to clear your mind, find balance and stay focused.

6. Being Financially Savvy

Financial stability has a huge impact on your life and plays a key role in your future. According to Prudential’s 2014–2015 Financial Experience & Behaviors Among Women Study, “Nearly half of women — 44% — are the primary breadwinners in their households, and 27% of married women now say they ‘take control’ of financial and retirement planning.” Women are becoming the predominant controller of their personal and family finances, and therefore, are also responsible for their family’s financial success. As a result, it is important for women to be financially savvy.

Most financially savvy women have three habits in common: they know where they stand financially; they pay themselves first; and they save. This discipline helps maintain balance in the home and in the budget.

7. Have Stopped Comparing Themselves To Others

There's probably no quicker way to sabotage your confidence and success. Gymnast Aly Raisman, a six-time Olympic medalist, says that silencing self-doubt daily is key. "I don't have the typical gymnastics body, but I'm still one of the best gymnasts in the world," she says. "I have insecurities just like everyone else." Her solid advice? "You can wake up in the morning and pick yourself apart, or you can wake up in the morning and decide to have a good day and feel confident."