One of the things that I have noticed over the years is the distinct difference in mindset between people who consistently succeed in life and those who struggle to break through.

These mindsets are entrenched habits that have a significant impact.  The good news is that they can be changed if you are willing to acknowledge them.

I’ve identified four scenarios in which the difference between winners and whiners really come to the fore.

How they cope with obstacles.  The first distinction between winners and whiners is how they each respond to the inevitable problems that happen in life. 

Winners look for a solution to the problem, utilising their creative juices and trying different options until they reach a resolution.

Whiners throw their hands up in the air and complain about the problem.  They wish that the problem would just go away and look enviously at the winner who has moved on from the issue, thinking that they must be lucky.

How they impact others.  One of the criticisms of the personal development industry is that it can sometimes lead to a self-absorbed outlook on life.  This is unfortunate as I strongly believe that we were created to be in community with others and can only truly be  considered successful when we are adding value to those around us, not meeting goals at the expense of others.

Real winners understand this and are constantly on the look-out for opportunities to build others up and take people with them on the journey.  I believe that the spoils of success are best shared.

Whiners however have a flawed perspective on life that  they can only win if others lose, even if they are supposed to be on the same team.  As such, they are constantly on the lookout for ways to bring others down, discrediting people who look successful and acting to sabotage their efforts.  This often happens out of insecurity and low self-esteem.

How they take action.  Albert Gray once said, “Winners have simply formed the habit of doing things that losers don’t want to do.”

When it comes to taking action, people with a winning mentality find a way to get things done, primarily through setting and writing ambitious goals and working diligently towards achieving them.  They understand that attitude is important, but only to support consistent action that takes you closer to your target.

Whiners just sit around waiting for something to fall into their lap, complaining that life isn’t fair.

While winners are working and studying, whiners are sleeping or watching TV.

How they respond to losing.  Great American runner Wilma Rudolph said, “Winning is great, sure, but if you are really going to do something in life, the secret is learning how to lose. Nobody goes undefeated all the time. If you can pick up after a crushing defeat, you are going to be a champion someday.”

I love this quote as it really describes the mentality that winners need to have when responding to losing.  Learning to take personal responsibility and then to work hard on the controllable reasons for the loss is crucial. 

On the other hand, whiners will look to blame others and make excuses for losses.  They don’t learn from negative experiences and as such are doomed to repeat them.

If you want to be a winner in life, make sure that you:

  • Focus on solutions, not problems,
  • Build others up, don’t tear them down,
  • Take action, don’t sit around,
  • Take responsibility for losses, don’t make excuses.

Life’s too short, so be a winner, not a whiner!

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