Dr. Phil McGraw shares part of his formula for success with "The Sweet 16," featured in his new book, Life Code: The New Rules for Winning in the Real World .
“I have studied success all of my life and I found that success leaves clues,” Dr. Phil says. “There is a formula for success and I’ve boiled it down to what I call The Sweet 16."
1. Have a defined “image” and never go out of character.
• You must know both yourself and how to present yourself.
2. Create a perception of uniqueness.
• Choose to define your image so that you distinguish yourself from anyone else in the world.
3. Play “big,” not just long.
• Playing big is different than playing long because even reliable and competent people that play long seldom win big, if at all.
4. Learn to claim and accept praise, and acknowledge it in a gracious way, but do accept it.
• The goal is to get noticed and acknowledged for who you are and what you do.
5. Become “essential.”
• If you want to succeed in any situation, it is important to be needed and good to be relied upon.
6. Know your real currency.
• Don’t waste time working for what you don’t want.
7. Always, always have a plan.
• If you want to achieve a sustained measure of success in any area of your life, you need a specific plan that begins with identifying what you want.
8. Keep things “close to the vest.”
• To be interesting you have to maintain a certain degree of mystery, because it gives you a degree of mastery.
9. Always be in investigatory mode.
• You have to constantly be gathering relevant information that may empower you to do and achieve what you desire.
10. Must “stretch” and behave your way to success, even if it feels like “fake it until you make it.”
• Have confidence and be bold enough to stretch yourself, scramble to close the gap if one exists, and grow into new opportunities.
11. Always keep your options open.
• It is important to always leave yourself a face-saving way out.
12. Always master the system and figure a way to make it work for you.
• You can gain distinct advantage if you know the game better than anybody else.
13. Create a passionate nucleus of supporters.
• Surround yourself with people who share your passion and vision, and support your pursuit of your goals.
14. Deal only with the truth.
• You must resolve to never fail to acknowledge if you have a problem or are in some kind of toxic situation that is draining your life energy.
15. Recognize and use the ego and greed of others to create a path to success.
• If you want acceptance and to be heard and well-regarded, you can create receptivity by being sensitive to your listener’s ego.
16. Pick your battles and never let your opponent have control.
• Never put yourself in an untenable position by picking a battle that you don’t need to fight and don’t know with great certainty that you can win.
Life Code: The New Rules for Winning in the Real World is published by Bird Street Books, Inc., which is owned by The Doctors’ executive producer.
Copyright © 2012 by Dr. Phil McGraw. Reprinted by permission of Bird St. Books, Inc. All rights reserved.
To order your copy of Life Code, click here.