Get All Access for $5/mo

10 Powerful Attributes of Insanely Successful People Everything they do is possible for you.

By Deep Patel Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Westend61 | Getty Images

There's something about successful people that sets them apart from everyone else: they have learned to draw on their natural abilities, traits and attributes to achieve their dreams.

Successful people approach situations differently from the rest of us. They frame challenges in a different way than most people. They have developed skills and traits that will carry them further than the rest.

If you want to achieve your wildest dreams and become phenomenally successful, you'll need to find ways to go from ordinary to extraordinary. Here are the 10 most powerful attributes of insanely successful people.

1. Goal oriented but flexible.

Successful people have lofty dreams, and they set long-term and short-term goals that will get them there. They write their goals down and work on them constantly. If you want to become successful, one of the easiest habits to develop is to start setting goals for yourself and create a plan of action to achieve those goals.

Successful people also understand the importance of being adaptable to changing circumstances. They periodically re-evaluate their objectives and make sure they're staying on track and moving forward. They analyze their progress and make sure their goals still make sense over time. They're flexible enough to recognize when it's time to change course. If need be, they alter or reset their goals and start anew.

Related: 16 Actions to Take to Achieve Any Goal

2. Relentlessly ambitious.

Sweeping success doesn't just fall into your lap -- you have to have a hunger for it and be willing to work steadily to achieve it. Successful people relentlessly pursue their objectives. They simply won't give up. If you want to be insanely successful, you have to be incredibly ambitious and motivated to do what it takes to make your dreams a reality. You have to be willing to work harder than anyone else.

Successful people have a healthy competitive streak that pushes them further and makes them determined to go after their goals. But they aren't out to copy others; they are determined to succeed on their own terms. The most successful people also find a way to temper overly aggressive tendencies. Their inner drive and motivation are an inspiration to others.

3. Fearless confidence.

The two biggest enemies to success are fear and doubt. We fear the unknown and we are afraid we will fail. We struggle with self-doubt, worrying that we aren't ready or don't have what it takes to succeed.

Wildly successful people learn how to harness these worries and put their misgivings and apprehensions aside. They fearlessly take action and go after their dreams. They dig deep and find the courage and self-confidence to test out innovative ideas, to plunge forward even if they're not one hundred percent ready.

Being fearless doesn't mean you don't feel fear; it means you don't let fear hold you back. It means you understand that doing nothing would be a worse fate than trying and failing. To be successful, you must be confident and courageous enough to continue trying new things.

4. Curious and inquisitive.

From the get-go, most of us are taught to go with the flow and accept the information we're given at face value, but insanely successful people see the world differently. They're naturally inquisitive and question everything.

They're constantly asking "what if?" or "why not?" or flipping a problem on its head to examine it from a different point of view. They want to know why and how things work, and if things can work differently.

They aren't satisfied with the status quo and they aren't afraid to challenge conventional wisdom. Successful people have curious and inquisitive minds, which lead them to make innovative breakthroughs and change the way things are done. Ultimately, their curiosity may be the catalyst for disrupting whole industries.

5. Cultivate a growth mindset.

Successful people believe they are capable of amazing things and are willing to work hard to achieve those things. Instead of seeing their flaws and failures as insurmountable, they focus on self-improvement and overcoming challenges.

They cultivate a growth mindset, or the belief that your basic qualities and traits are things you can grow and improve through effort and hard work. According to author Carol Dweck, a professor of psychology at Stanford University, a growth mindset is when you believe your basic qualities are your starting point in life, but you have the ability to improve and overcome adversity.

Adopting this mindset allows people to thrive in challenging times. A growth mindset sees failure as a springboard for growth, as opposed to a fixed mindset, which avoids challenges, gives up easily and feels threatened by the success of others.

Related: 10 Ways to Develop a Success-Oriented Mindset

6. Passionately committed.

Insanely successful people believe wholeheartedly in their goals and dreams. They are deeply passionate about their goals and are completely committed to seeing them through. Successful people understand that passion is the key to progress, and that progress will in turn eventually become success.

Passion isn't something you can fake; it must authentically come from within. That's why you'll never succeed at doing something you dislike -- it must be something you love and are dedicated to seeing through. People who are committed to and passionate about their goals will shape their lives and circumstances to support those ambitions. Only those people who are deeply committed to their goals will actually succeed.

7. Calm under pressure.

Facing a high-stress, high-pressure situation can cause you to constantly overthink and overanalyze, leaving you unable to perform at your full potential. This is why we crumble under the pressure.

But wildly successful people have learned to keep their cool and mitigate the negative effects of stress and pressure. When the pressure kicks into high gear, they approach the situation with a positive mental attitude. They see the challenge as an opportunity, not a life-or-death threat.

They reframe a stressful situation as an opportunity to overcome a challenge. They remain calm and devote the mental resources necessary to focus clearly on the situation without allowing panic to set in. They focus on the task at hand and make the decisions necessary to take action and push through without allowing the problem to overwhelm them.

8. In charge and empowered.

To become successful, you must believe that you are in charge of your own life. You must never lose your sense of purpose or direction, even in the midst of a storm.

The most successful people have self-determination -- they are the captain at the helm of their own ship, steering their careers and lives the way they want to go. This gives them a great deal of satisfaction and empowerment in deciding who they want to be and what they want to do with their lives.

Self-determination also gives you resilience because you feel strong and capable to deal with whatever comes your way. It sets you apart and makes others appreciate and respect you all the more. When faced with a crisis, successful people tackle it head on, sure of themselves and their abilities. Their determination and inner strength make them a reliable compass to those around them.

9. Realistically optimistic.

Successful people keep their focus on the positive, but they also see things rationally and objectively. They have realistic optimism, combining a positive outlook with a clear-eyed perspective of a situation.

They believe they will succeed, but they don't delude themselves into believing they will succeed easily. Their optimism helps them stay nimble and flexible, looking for a path forward through uncharted territory.

But they are also honest with themselves and can recognize when a mistake has been made. They stay confident and they don't let negativity and pessimism seep into their mindset -- that would only corrupt their ability to persevere through tough times. They are realistic and practical when it comes to strategizing and planning how they'll overcome obstacles, and persistent in working hard to achieve their goals.

Related: 7 Communication Skills Every Entrepreneur Must Master

10. Strong communicator.

The ability to effectively communicate your ideas to others is one of the most important traits identified by mega-successful people like Bill Gates and Richard Branson. In the end, it all comes down to being able to relay your thoughts and ideas.

The most successful people are able to effectively negotiate and convey pertinent information when speaking and writing. They have the ability to actively listen and engage others. You have to be able to gather information and understand what is being said, and then effectively respond and ensure your message is understood.

This also includes nonverbal communication, such as how we hold ourselves and present ourselves to others even when we're not speaking. The most successful people are excellent communicators, which allows them share ideas and collaborate with many different types of people. It's also key to being able to gather feedback from customers and clients and understand what their needs are and what they're looking for.

Deep Patel

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Serial Entrepreneur

Deep Patel is a serial entrepreneur, investor and marketer. Patel founded Blu Atlas, the fastest-growing men’s personal care brand, and sold it for eight figures in 2023, less than 18 months after its launch.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business Solutions

Increase Productivity with This Microsoft 365 Subscription, Now $25 Off

It can make the entrepreneur life a lot easier.

Business News

Apple Pay Later Is Ending. Here's What's Taking Its Place.

The program was available for less than a year.


This Artist Answered a Businessman's 'Powerful' Question — Then His Work Became 'the Poster Child for Juneteenth': 'Your Network Really Becomes Your Net Worth'

Reginald Adams was the executive director of a Houston-based art museum for more than a decade before he decided to launch his own public art and design firm.


Harvard Business School Professor Says 65% of Startups Fail for One Reason. Here's How to Avoid It.

Team alignment isn't nice to have -- it's critical for running a successful business.

Business News

Here's What Companies Are Open and Closed on Juneteenth 2024

Since it became a holiday in 2021, Juneteenth has been recognized by some major corporations as a paid day off.

Growing a Business

I Hit $100 Million in Annual Revenue by Being More Transparent — Here Are the 3 Strategies That Helped Me Succeed

Three road-tested ways to be more transparent and build relationships that can transform your business — without leaving you feeling nightmarishly over-exposed.