What are the habits of a successful woman?
Let’s talk about a little secret today. People don’t become superstars from one amazing accomplishment. No, they get to where they are because of all the little habits along the way. They fought to create good habits and get rid of the bad.
And every small decision led them to success.
So, utilize these habits of successful women for your health, happiness, and impact.
Why These Successful Habits Are For Women
First, here’s the thing. I’ve read dozens of great books on building successful habits. And what drives me crazy is that they are all written by and for men.
Women are different. We balance MORE. And on an entirely different level. So, habits of a successful woman are unique to us. It’s time to get the right perspective.
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Remember: No One Is Perfect
Not even uber-successful women. Here at HHI, we believe that these successful women’s habits lead to amazing things. However, that doesn’t mean you don’t fall, flounder, or make mistakes. We’re all human. And when you’re stretching yourself with success habits, you’re bound to take a misstep somewhere.
Dust yourself off and get back after it. It’s perseverance that matters. That’s what separates the ordinary from the extraordinary.
Best Growth Habits To Be Successful
What are the key habits of success? Read this section to find out!
1. Learn Constantly
Several years ago, I participated in a 12-month “read a book a week” challenge. When it was over, the results were stunning. It accelerated my impact, habits, and income to heights I didn’t know were possible.
Plus, it made me realize that your world is only limited by what you know. Learning constantly is an incredible advantage in the game of business and of life.
2. Set & Go After Your Goals
Setting good SMART goals is how you get from A to B. There’s no way around it. These goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. They’re concrete enough to help you follow through.
But don’t stop there!
In a study done by Dr. Gail Matthews, those who wrote down their goals were 42% more likely to achieve them.
In the study of 267 participants, a whopping 72% of those who wrote down their goals, made a plan, and gave a friend a weekly progress report achieved their goals or were halfway there. Compared to the average goal-achieving rate of 8%, that number is staggering.
(See more goal setting statistics here)
3. Put Impact Before Income
That doesn’t mean you don’t make a great income. But when you put people before profits, you focus on the positive impact you’re making on others. With this mindset, you’re adding extreme value to people. The income and recognition will follow.
4. Build an Astounding Morning Routine
Establishing a morning routine is the best way to skyrocket your productivity and build in self-care.
Whether you get up at 5 am or you get up at 8 am, your first few hours set the tone for how your day will go. Will you be checking your messages every 5 seconds? Or will you be calm and centered because you woke up to a workout?
If you are a mom, it’s CRUCIAL to get up before your kids. If you don’t make time for yourself now, you never will.
Here are a few amazing things you can do in the morning:
The differences seem small in the moment. But over a lifetime, an impactful morning routine can make you healthy, wealthy, and wise. Just as Ben Franklin said.
5. Focus on Your Most Important Priorities
Spoiler alert: that’s NOT social media, email, or the news
It’s most likely deep-focused work. Ask yourself this:
What is the one thing you do that will lead to mastery in your craft? Or leading your field?
For me, that’s writing. For you, it may be something else. Either way, do it early every day and get it done. Soon, you’ll find that your productivity has doubled because you don’t give yourself a chance to procrastinate.
Some of the most successful people in history visualized their goals. Michael Phelps used to visualize himself before races. Olympic Skier Lindsey Vonn, musician Jay Z, and media mogul Oprah Winfrey are just a few more of many.
Visualizing cultivates a sense of confidence. It provides the strong belief that you can build the life of your dreams. And it creates motivation. You’re building momentum in your own head. How cool is that!
7. Reduce Your Decisions
Women make tens of thousands of decisions each day. And if you have kids, you’re making decisions for yourself AND for them on top of it.
This takes its toll. In fact, science tells us that we wake up with a limited amount of willpower and focus. Every decision we make depletes them, until you reach the end of your day exhausted, burnt out, and drowning in a bottle of wine. (source)
Combat decision fatigue by reducing your daily decisions. Try one of these:
- Set up your clothes for the week when you do laundry
- Put your meals on a regular rotation
- Plan your week out ahead of time (one reason planning is so crucial!)
Automate the basics to free up mental space and feel less overwhelmed.
8. Ask For Help
Listen up moms! You. Can. Not. Do. It. All.
If a woman on Instagram looks like she does, it’s only because she’s asking for help behind the scenes. She has made the intentional decision to not be stretched too thin. Build your support system!
- Ask relatives to help
- Utilize carpool with neighbors
- Get your family involved at home (Use the Routine Chart Pack to help!)
- Pay for services (cleaning, mowing the lawn, etc.)
Speak up and find support. You’ll be better at everything you do for it.
9. Use Positive Affirmations
We all walk through life looking through rose-colored glasses. Our perspective is shaped by our past experiences, the way we were brought up, and the people around us. But here’s the most important part:
The story you tell yourself is all that matters.
- If you think you’re beautiful, you’ll radiate beauty.
- If you believe you’re the kind of person who does hard things, you’ll do hard things.
- If you don’t value your worth, you’ll signal that to others. And they will take advantage of you.
Successful women know this. They strive to keep their thoughts positive and strong.
Find more great affirmations examples here:
- Powerful Affirmations for Women
- Positive Affirmations for Self-Love
- Bedtime Affirmations To Close Out Your Day
10. Get Out of Your Comfort Zone Often
Women, especially, fear making mistakes. We want to look like we have it all together.
But if you’re always worried about what others think, you’ll never stretch outside your comfort zone.
Coloring outside your lines is the way to be successful.
So, what have you done lately that stretched you?
11. Plan Your Week
Make it a habit to plan your week ahead and you’ll have a much better chance of achieving your goals, creating work-life balance, and avoiding nasty scheduling surprises.
Here are the 3 main steps:
- Plan out the actions that will help you meet your goals. (Plan your workouts, schedule a team dinner, etc.)
- Make note of mandatory obligations for the week (kid activities, scheduled meetings, etc.)
- Check to see that you’re making time for your priorities. Life is a balance. Are you making room for impactful work, but also time to enjoy life with family and friends?
12. Say No
Women find it notoriously difficult to say no. We don’t want to disappoint anyone!
But you’ll never make time for your goals and priorities if you’re always doing what others want you to do.
I heard something years ago that helped me break this cycle and let go of the guilt.
Scale everything you could be doing from 1-10. Any activity that you score 7 or above is a great thing for you to pursue. You are excited and it aligns with your life energy. If it’s 6 or below, you need to value your time and say no.
Here’s an example:
A friend asks you to go to a concert. You don’t know the musician, and you’re feeling under the weather, but you don’t want to disappoint your friend.
You scale this a 4 in your head. Tell your friend NO. You can schedule something you both care of about later when you’re feeling better.
13. Let Go of Self Pity
Yes, it’s easier to focus on life’s injustices. All you have to do is tune in to the news to know that the world is full of them. But when you dwell on self-pity, you’re forfeiting progress.
Successful women keep this in mind, and make it a habit to get past self-pity so that they can focus on the things they can control.
“The difference between successful people and others is how long they feel sorry for themselves.”– Barbara Corcoran
14. Use the 80/20 Rule
20% of what you do will give you 80% of your results. It’s mind-boggling, but it has been proven over and over.
So, if you were to write down everything you did in your week, what would be the 20% that…
- creates the family life that you desire?
- contributes to a healthy lifestyle?
- helps you excel at work?
- maintains your friendships?
This habit is about working smarter and not harder. You can’t completely eliminate the other 80%, but focusing on the few essential actions in your life moves you further than you can imagine.
15. Cultivate a Solid Night Routine
While a morning routine invigorates you, the right night routine does the opposite. It sets you up for a peaceful night. It says to you…
“Great job today! Now, allow yourself to recover so you can kick butt again tomorrow.”
Here are great things to do as part of your night routine:
- Turn your phone off 30-60 minutes before you sleep. Give yourself a break from information overload and blue light.
- Journal. Process your thoughts and download your greatest moments from the day to sleep better.
- Take a bath. A hot bath tells your body it’s time to prepare for sleep.
- Read. Reading is a natural stress reliever and aids sleep. (See more interesting reading statistics)
16. Track Your Finances
Tracking where your money goes can be burdensome. That’s why so many people don’t do it!
But successful women know that this is a habit you can’t ignore. So, have a quick weekly budget review or go over your expenses monthly to stay ahead in your financial game.
17. Save Money
Unfortunately, if you don’t save more than you spend, it’s impossible to be successful. Without saving, you’ll always be slamming your head against your debt. And you’ll never have the options that are afforded to those who aren’t desperate for a quick buck to survive.
Use that weekly finance review from #16 to make sure you’re on a path to building wealth.
18. Find a Mentor ASAP
Find people who are better than you in a certain area, and it will skyrocket your own levels of success.
A business mentor can tell you the ins and outs of a business model. A fitness mentor can give you the knowledge needed to get over plateaus. And a relationship mentor can help you with your marriage.
Nowadays, these mentors don’t have to be people you know directly. I’ve learned an insane amount of business knowledge from being on an email list, through podcasts, and by reading books by the same author.
Self-Care Habits of Successful Women
Do you want to double your focus? Triple your energy? Be less stressed? And feel better every day? No gimmicky product is going to do that for you. But exercise will.
Working out will help you look good and be disease free. But the less talked about benefit to women is that it boosts your health, happiness, and impact as few other things can.
20. Prioritize Quiet Time
Meditation was one of the most beneficial discoveries of my life as a mom. It saved my health. It saved my sanity. And it saved my relationship with my kids.
Set aside 10 minutes every day to quietly reflect, meditate, or pray. As women, we are bombarded with obligations and to-dos. What we need more of is a quiet place to hear our inner voices.
21. Connect With Loved Ones
Science tells us that the happiest people are those that feel connected with others (Harvard.edu).
Enjoying financial success without loved ones to share it with is a hollow victory. So, make it a habit to schedule coffees and lunches with your favorite people.
22. Maintain Supportive Friendships
One of the top 5 regrets of the dying (found by Bronnie Ware in palliative care) was…
We’re all busy. But once you fall out of touch with friends, it’s much harder to recover that relationship. So, just like with loved ones, make it a habit to schedule regular get-togethers so that you can touch base. Even once or twice a year is enough to keep a friendship alive.
23. Journal Daily
Journaling is one of those secret successful habits of women that have a HUGE wealth of benefits. And some of the most influential people in history (Marie Curie, Albert Einstein, and Leonardo Da Vinci) kept daily journals. Try it to:
- Write and magnify your blessings
- Take notes to solidify what you learn
- Cleanse negative thoughts (a brain dump is the only thing that works for my anxiety in the middle of the night)
- Clarify your goals (write them out and make a plan)
This doesn’t have to be a long affair! Even a five-minute practice can make a difference in your heart and mindset.
24. Meal Plan
When you plan what you eat, you stay away from chowing down on greasy takeout every night.
In the short term, that heavy food will leave you sluggish and bloated. And if it happens for years, you’ll have bigger health problems to deal with (all of which will stunt your success).
So, make a weekly food plan. It’s a simple habit that yields fantastic results. In our home, we make this easier by rotating the same healthy meals every week or two.
25. Spend Time in Nature
As discussed in our 30 day glow up challenge, being outside in nature promotes calm within you.
In fact, a recent study found that people who spend two hours outside every week were more likely to report good health and psychological well-being. (Yale.edu)
This comes out to a little more than 17 minutes per day.
In Japan, they even have a practice called “forest bathing.” There, they know it’s good for the soul to wander amongst the trees.
26. Eat Clean(ish)
This is one large habit that’s made more manageable through smaller habits. Then, when you do indulge, it’s minimizing the impact to your energy and focus.
- meal plan (see #21)
- meal prep
- keep junk food out of plain sight
- keep healthy foods within reach
- build systems around what you eat
27. Practice Gratitude
The science on gratitude is staggering. Study after study has shown us that gratitude is a bridge to greater happiness. Gratitude helps you feel stronger positive emotions, improve your health, overcome adversity, enjoy your life experiences, and build better relationships (source).
There are many small ways to incorporate this. Try one of these:
- Make a big list of things you’re grateful for
- Journal 3 good things that happened to you every night
- Try a gratitude activity for the entire family
28. Drink Plenty of Water
As the CDC states, getting enough water every day can prevent unclear thinking, mood swings, overheating, and constipation.
Plus, how well you hydrate makes a massive impact on your energy levels. But we know this, right?! The trick is making it happen!
Here are easy ideas to help build this habit:
- Purchase a large water bottle that tracks your water intake
- Create the habit of refilling your water bottle at lunchtime
- Incorporate a cup of herbal tea into your evening routine
- Jazz a glass of water up daily with a splash of lemon or fruit
29. Make Sleep a Priority
Do you get 8 hours of sleep?
If you don’t, you’re not alone. Even though we know sleep is crucial, a new study shows that more than 1 in 3 people aren’t getting enough sleep. Unfortunately, skimping on this habit will result in less self-control, increased mental fatigue, and a HUGE host of other problems.
Your body needs this time to repair and recover. Get it by:
- Putting away screens before bed (get that book out or talk with loved ones instead)
- Implementing a little wind-down routine that helps you sleep (#15)
- Maintaining a consistent bedtime and wakeup schedule
- Working on getting kids on a solid sleep routine and asking your partner for help with midnight interruptions. (One study from the University of Michigan shows that whether moms work or not, they get up far more often with the kids at night)
30. Wear Sunscreen
Skin cancer continues to be the most common cancer in the United States.
By making SPF 15 sunscreen a part of your morning routine, you can lower your risk by 40-50%, depending on the type of skin cancer. You’ll also notice less skin aging when you use sunscreen daily.
31. Make Self-Love a Habit
People with higher levels of self-love are more confident and willing to go after what they desire.
You can elevate your self-love through:
- Self Loving Affirmations that you say to yourself or put on your phone
- Adding self-care habits into your routine (See #32)
- Curating your input daily. (Are you surrounding yourself with positive energy?)
32. Manage Stress & Anxiety Habitually
Part of being successful is understanding the key role of prevention. In order to avoid burnout, disease, and inflammation, you must implement daily habits to manage your stress levels.
For example, my morning routine of exercise and meditation is so integrated that I notice my anxiety spike after just two days of skipping it.
But everyone is different. Here are a few more ideas to try:
- A regular bath night (maybe as part of Sunday self care)
- Daily nature walks
- Monthly massages
- A daily check-in with loved ones or friends
33. Take Time Off of Work
Two things drive me crazy about the image of a “successful woman.”
- She must be superwoman (she does everything and she does it perfectly)
- She hustles 24 / 7 / 365
Neither of these is possible. And yet we hold them as our standards. As a result, rest and recovery are viewed as the enemy of the modern woman.
You. Need. To. Rest.
Do not rest from your job just to take care of your family. Or rest from your family just to take care of your job. But take that day off of all work to replenish your stores. Because the hidden secret of successful women is that they are more productive, happy, and impactful when they give themselves permission to rest.
Other Great Successful Habits of Women
34. Declutter Often
it’s impossible to clearly strategize for a bright future when you’re drowning in stuff. Too much clutter is just like decision fatigue (#7). It wears you down until you don’t have enough mental focus for the things that matter.
Try creating the habit of decluttering every Sunday for just 10 minutes.
“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”Hans Hofmann
35. Celebrate Your Wins
Did you get that promotion you worked so hard for? Or did your child make it out of diapers?
Celebrate these moments! Being “successful” isn’t just about moving on to the next best thing. It’s about cherishing the moments all along the journey.
36. Schedule in Fun (Successful Women Habits)
In the hustle and grind of every day, it’s easy for an ambitious woman (especially one who’s juggling family as well) to forget to let down her hair.
I struggle with this too. So, long ago, I made a list of things I find fun to schedule in during my weekly planning.
- Nature walks (with friends or alone)
- Uplifting and funny movies
- Reading good books by the fireplace
- Family traditions
- Excellent food or wine (or eating from a new restaurant)
- Family bike rides
- Family questions
- Date night
- Vacations to beautiful natural places (mountains, beach, camping)
- Bucket list activities (seasonal, family, or life)
Not everything gets scheduled every week. But this list reminds me that there’s more to life than work and my to-do list.
What’s on your “fun list”?
37. Utilize Your Sundays
In the life of a successful woman, Sundays should be used for two things.
- REST. If you don’t take at least one day of the week for recovery, you’ll be riding the burnout train hard (and the rest of your life will suffer).
- Prepping for the rest of the week. Not all day of course, but if you can take an hour out of your Sunday to prep a little bit of healthy food, or plan your week, you’ll be rocking it the rest of the week with less effort.
38. Invest Your Money
While tracking finances and saving are the first steps, they’re not enough. Investing ensures that you’re putting your money to work for you. And there is a multitude of ways to do it:
- Invest in yourself (through education, healthy lifestyle choices, etc.)
- Invest in your business or to advance your career
- Invest in stocks, bonds, or real estate
Note: All investing comes with an element of risk. So, be sure to do your research before jumping in.
39. Indulge in Creative Hobbies
For many women, we are happiest when we can infuse our creativity into what we do. If that’s not possible through work, make it a habit to do things you love. Try gardening, cooking, or anything else that acts as your outlet.
See more here: Great Hobbies Ideas For Women >>
40. Block Schedule Your Day
Successful women know that ping-ponging from task to task is a time suck. Instead, they block out their day for certain activities and stick to the plan.
41. Create Systems
You should have systems for anything you encounter regularly. This will eliminate countless decisions and empower others to take charge.
- Kids homework
- Traveling (if you do it often)
- How you do things at work
- Pretty much anything you can think of.
Doing so will free up huge amounts of time to spend on other things, like cuddling with the kids or crushing that work goal.
Here’s a system for your kids routine >>
42. Find Daily Inspiration
Successful women are fun to be around because they shine their light on others. To do this, you need your energy and life force to be strong. Consider implementing a “daily inspiration” habit into your routine. It could include:
- Affirmations or quotes
- YouTube videos
- Articles or books (Check out these empowering books for women)
43. Hang Out With People Who Inspire You
Research has found that the old adage is true. You really do become like the five people you spend the most time with. So, take a peek into your tribe. Are they contributing to your success? Or are they sabotaging or bringing you down?
This doesn’t mean you have to cut people out entirely. Just understand to whom you don’t want to dedicate large chunks of time to.
44. Dare To Dream
Successful women make dreaming a habit.
After all, how will you get to where you want to go if you don’t know where that is?
Dream big. Be ambitious.
This will light a fire of passion in your soul and make you go after what you want. You can get started by making a vision board (here are vision board examples). Or spend a night making that beautiful life bucket list. Then, review these things at least once a quarter.
(Or better yet, display them where you pass by often).
45. Keep Up Your Momentum With Healthy Rewards
The time between doing your good habits and seeing the results can be excruciating. That’s why healthy rewards for adults come in handy! These small “treats” reinforce your good behaviors. If you routinely use rewards (and consequences) you’ll elevate all of your successful women habits.
46. See Opportunity
What makes many people successful is their ability to see opportunity whereas others see only the negative. So, seize the moment. And remember that there’s a silver lining in every challenge.
47. Forgive Yourself (Habits of Successful Women)
Failure is normal. Everyone makes mistakes. But the truly great bounce back from their mistakes quickly. By forgiving themselves, they can recover at record speeds, often using their failures as stepping stones for further success.
48. Tackle Issues Head On
Successful women don’t avoid the things that bother them. They realize that those problems will only grow. So, make it a habit to solve problems quickly, instead of letting them fester.
49. Understand That Boundaries Set You Free
You’ll never be truly successful if you don’t first protect your mental and physical health. Doing so will be the reason you thrive in the areas that you care about.
Set a boundary in these and/or others:
- Social Media
- The number of activities you’re involved in
- Toxic relationships
- Work/life balance
- A budget (a boundary for your spending)
50. Take More Risks
Women, myself included, tend to think on the side of safety and security. And this is great! Peace of mind is priceless.
But sometimes this can keep you from taking the risks necessary to succeed. Don’t let the fear of risk stop you from ever taking a risk. Sometimes, you just have to jump.
The successes I’ve had in my own life were only possible because I decided to choose the less stable route.
If you only ever stay on the sidelines, you’ll never taste true victory.
Secrets of a Successful Woman
Ok, that’s a big list. But what if you could only focus on 5? Which five would you pick? The following success habits for women are excellent anchors to start with.
1. 7-8 Hours of Sleep
2. Asking for Help Regularly
3. Regular Exercise
4. Setting Boundaries
5. Managing Daily Stress
5 Quick Tips For Making Habits Stick
1. Track Those Habits!
Use this free habit tracker pdf to help! >>
2. Tell a Friend
If you are the only one who knows about your habit, it’s easy to slide. But if you tell a friend or loved one, you’ll have to explain why you didn’t follow through. And that can be enough to help you persevere.
3. Make a Bet or Join a Challenge
Social pressure is a powerful thing. Add in a little money and you’ve got a very strong chance that you’ll be following through on what you say you’ll do.
4. Be Around Others Who Identify With What You Want
Seeing others’ success will motivate you to find your own.
- Want to be fit? Hang out with people who take their health seriously.
- Want to be a great mom? Find other moms you admire.
- Want to be a powerful business owner? Find one who already is. And then listen.
5. Stack Your Successful Women Habits
Do you already have an ingrained habit? Put your new habit right after one you already do. This will help you remember when to do it each day.
Set a phone alarm too!
A Day in the Life of a Successful Woman
For more on routines and successful women habits, check out these impactful women >>
To Consider With Habits of Successful Women
This list is large! And it’s not intended for you to try everything at once. Pick one or two habits of successful women that you can commit to today and strive to make them a regular part of your day.
With time, you’ll continue adding until you’ve got truly magical days.
More HHI posts you’ll love…
- 100 Easy Self Care Ideas To Reboot
- Try the 30 Day Gratitude Challenge
- Simple Ways to Motivate Yourself Every Day