There’s no questions that high performers do things differently. Here are six major ways that high achievers look at the world and function differently. 

Try these techniques for yourself and see how your life shifts.


1. Sleep

Most people think that one hour of sleep is an hour not being productive. High achievers know that one extra hour of sleep means several hours of increased productivity.

Sleep, as it turns out, if for high performers, because it breeds creativity and enables the highest levels of mental contribution.

Go ahead, take that nap, or, go to bed an hour early to get the advantage tomorrow.


2. Play

Little kids learn nearly solely through play. Most adults view play as something for little kids, but that’s not the case. At least, it shouldn’t be.

Play is a powerful antidote to stress. Stress is an enemy to productivity, and shuts down the creative parts of our brain. 

Most people view play as trivial and unproductive waste of time, but high achievers know that play is essential. Here’s why: play releases us from the grind and promotes creativity and exploratory thought. It expands our minds in ways that allow us to see old ideas in a new way.

Not sure where to start? What did you use to do for fun as a kid? How can you incorporate that into your life now?

3. Go Off the Grid

High achievers aren’t always reachable. They take time to think quietly, to escape the daily grind, to unplug. They detach from technology in order to free up the space for new thoughts.

In today’s notification-frenzied life, taking time to unplug allows time for deeper levels of thought. It also allows new ideas to come to the surface.

Distraction free time is essential for high performers.


4. Prioritize

When you’re good at something, you get a ton of offers for great projects. When you’re not good at anything, you have trouble deciding where to start.

In both cases, prioritization is key. High performers know this and spend time prioritizing their most important activities.

High performers aren’t afraid of only accomplishing one thing; in fact, they’ll attempt to only do one thing at a time, for maximum effectiveness.

Most people get confused as to what’s really essential and view everything on a to do list as equally important. High achievers know that almost everything is nonessential and are able to distinguish the trivial many from the vital few.


5. Say No

High achievers sound pretty mean, right about now, don’t they? Not really. They’re actually kind because they’re more likely to deliver on what they say yes to.

Most people say yes to everything because they see someone else doing something and think they should, too. Regular folks say yes to every potential opportunity.

This causes distraction, which leads to poorer performance.

High performers, on the other hand, say yes to a very small percentage of opportunities, and they use specific criteria to decide exactly what they’re looking for, before saying yes.


6. Uncommit

According to Greg McKeown in his book Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, people are prone to the sunk-cost bias. That is, when an investment has been made in a project, be it time or money (or both), people are more likely to try to stick it out.

If the project is a loser, though, this is a bad move. Sticking with a dud wastes resources and prevents growth.

What’s the better move?

High performers are comfortable with cutting losses. Instead of refusing to admit mistakes, they take them and move on.

Average performers think they can make something work if they just keep trying. They think they should continue on due to what they’ve already invested. High performers think the opposite in this regard.

High achievers ask themselves what they could do with their current resources if they weren’t dedicating them to the current project. High achievers aren’t afraid to pivot when it’s prudent.

Above all else, what sets high achievers apart from other people is their desire to try new things. Which new idea will you try?

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6 Things All High Performers Do


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