It’s hard NOT to wonder what the future holds. The news is filled with gloom and doom: riots, debt crisis, failing businesses, and unemployment at all time highs. And depending on whom you believe, a quick fix isn’t around the corner. This may take months, even years to fix, not just a few weeks.

If a poor economy is likely over the coming years, do you have what it takes to create a business that is strong and thriving? Just as many successful businesses are created during hard times as they are the good ones. So it is possible. But there are telltale signs that pave the path to success. Do you have the traits necessary to move forward in a positive way?

Hard Working and Smart Working

While a lot of business advice focuses around the “4 hour work week” concept, the truth is it does take more than 4 hours to establish a new, successful business. It takes a lot of hard work to build a concept to the point of it becoming profitable, and give you the wealth you need to sustain your lifestyle.

While hard work is necessary, you also have to find ways to work hard on the concepts that matter the most – and that’s where you really can learn from the “4 hour work week” concept. The idea is to work smarter with the hours you are given. Instead of spending hour after hour working on things you don’t like or aren’t good at, give that to people that can do it, freeing your time up to do what you love.

When you combine the two concepts together, you can quickly know which concepts will earn you money, and which ones will waste your time. You’ll see which ones will move you forward, and which ones will hold you back.

Goal Oriented

Goals are your road map to a better future. Yes, you can get from point A to point B without a map, but you may end up at a lot of side locations, and get there months or even years later than you anticipated.

Goals give you something strong to shoot for, and to measure whether you are doing the right things at the right time. They help keep you motivated, and give you the direction you need for “what’s next”.

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Taking Risks

To build business, wealth, and a successful lifestyle, you have to be willing to take risks along the way. If you ask anyone who’s at the top of their game, all will admit to taking calculated risks along the way. That doesn’t mean you have to jump at risky items – handing thousands of dollars over to a person you’ve just met for an investment “deal” isn’t a smart move. But if you weigh out your options, look at the alternatives, and understand what you are getting into, you’ve increased the chance that you are headed down the right path.

Curiosity

I bet you know a person who is always curious, always learning, always trying new things, and always succeeding along the way.

I also bet you also know a person who is skeptical about everything, holds back, very rarely moves forward, and is always complaining that its hard to get ahead.

The difference between the two is a healthy dose of curiosity. Curiosity helps you learn, improve and thrive. If you want to know more, are always looking for new ideas and opportunities, you’re much more likely to find it.

Creativity

Creativity gives you a variety of ways to look at the same topic.

Every day, we are faced with new challenges, and our attitude is what controls the direction we go. If we learn a magazine is going out of business, and we’ve advertised in it and gained tons of clientele from it for the past five years, what are we going to do next? Creativity lets you find a new approach, and find new ways of attracting the same business. You might have to do it with a new approach, a different amount of money, or a cheaper alternative if funding becomes tight. But what allows you to move forward is looking at it with creativity, and finding a new solution to your existing dilemma.

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