Success isn’t always about making noise or seeking the spotlight.
“Work hard in silence, let success be your noise”, as Frank Ocean said.
Often, true success occurs quietly, without the need for grand announcements.
It’s the subtle achievements that truly stand out and indicate real success – not the facade and illusion of it.
So let’s dive into the 8 subtle signs that someone is quietly pushing forwards and achieving their goals.
You might discover that you, too, are quietly succeeding in your own way.
1) They celebrate small victories
Quiet achievers understand the importance of celebrating even the smallest wins.
(Just quietly, and without ever bragging or boasting).
They know that success is a journey filled with milestones, and each one deserves recognition, because if you yoke yourself and say you can only celebrate when you reach the end goal…
The journey becomes very boring, and the end goal might for all you know change along the way.
So whether it’s completing a small but challenging task at work, reaching a personal fitness goal, or simply making it through a tough day without running off to the bathroom to cry, these silent achievers really acknowledge all their achievements.
2) They find joy in the little things
Life is often a rush of big moments and significant events that we get swept along with.
But spend all your time waiting for the big moments, and you’ll let the most important ones fly by without you noticing.
And it’s in those quiet moments where we slow down and reflect on the beauty in the everyday, mundane things where we tend to get the most satisfaction.
You can be quietly succeeding at building the most successful of start-ups, or acing your new job, but still get to delight in a bagel from your favorite spot around the corner.
Or feel your body slow and settle as you get enveloped into a hug from your partner.
This ability to savor the small pleasures keeps them grounded and content, even on the road to bigger achievements.
It also helps them to de-stress and focus on gradually toiling along the path to what they determine to be their own version of success.
So, take a moment to notice the little things around you; you might be surprised how much happiness you find in the most unexpected of places.
3) They’re savvy time managers
While it might not be the most glamorous or trendy trait, effective time management is a cornerstone of quiet success.
These individuals understand the value of their time and how to make the most of it.
So true, they might decline a wild night out as they know that they have a growing workload to deal with in the morning.
And they probably carry around a planner and pen in their bag (as well as multiple other time-scheduling methods, both digital and written.)
In these, they set clear priorities, plan their days, and avoid unnecessary distractions.
By managing their time efficiently, they can tackle tasks with focus and efficiency, leaving more room for friendships and partners in allocated time spaces.
This ability to plan and organize grants them a nifty way of balancing work and play, with very little effort and a whole load of benefits.
4) They embrace their quirks
Quiet achievers are unapologetically themselves, quirks and all.
Because celebrating ‘success’, if your success looks like everyone else’s, hardly sets you apart from the crowd now, does it?
Instead, these individuals understand that their unique qualities make up the skill set enabling them to reach new heights and new achievements, bringing authenticity to their endeavors.
So whether it’s an unusual hobby (Pokemon Go, crocheting, making kefir at home), their distinctive sense of humor (dad jokes all-round), or funky fashion choices, they don’t shy away from their individuality.
Embracing your genuine self is a magnet for like-minded people like these quiet achievers.
Plus, doing so opens up so many doorways to new relationships and new opportunities that can contribute to your success.
5) They find humor in adversity
So, I don’t mean meeting trauma with a giggle or trying to throw in a deadpan joke when it’s absolutely the wrong time to be doing so.
But we all know that life can throw unexpected challenges and setbacks at us.
It’s those who quietly succeed who have an excellent knack for finding humor in adversity – in the right quantities, and in the right moments.
They use laughter as a coping mechanism, helping them navigate difficult situations with grace and resilience.
And this is not about ignoring the seriousness of problems but about approaching them with a light-hearted attitude and trying not to get overwhelmed or impounded by the obstacles you’ll undoubtedly face.
As cliche as it may be, these quiet achievers are excellent at making lemonade out of the lemons life throws at them.
So, when life serves you the very same lemons, have a go at making some lemonade and share a laugh with those around you.
6) They practice self-compassion
Those on the path to success can often get wrapped up in beating themselves up should they set one foot wrong, or encounter some sort of setback.
Yet those who quietly attain great heights don’t slip into these self-sabotaging, self-abusive behaviors.
They are by no means overly critical of themselves when they make mistakes or face failures.
Instead, they treat themselves with the same kindness and understanding they extend to others, the same ways they would want to be treated in return.
This self-compassion allows them to bounce back from setbacks and maintain their motivation – because if you’re punching the figure in the mirror and debasing them with critical self-talk, they will inevitably stumble and fall when they hit a hurdle.
Plus, they’ll lack the confidence to get back up with an esteem that has been so fragmented by negativity and talk of failure.
Hence why treating yourself kindly is important, not only for emotional well-being, but also to make sure you maintain the confidence and courage to weather failure and remain resilient on the pathway to success.
7) They cherish moments of stillness & silence
Life is loud and chaotic.
And even in moments of quiet, many of us blast music or have the TV running at the same time as our speakers.
We seem to fear silence, as a society.
But quiet achievers know that it’s in these periods of silence that they are offered a chance for introspection, clarity, and rejuvenation.
And these three elements make up the perfect shake-not-stir combo for success.
So whether it’s sitting in silence, meditating, or enjoying a peaceful walk in nature, these quiet achievers take time to reconnect with themselves and recharge their energy.
They know they’ll need that extra energy down the line, so never fail to make space to take a step back and relax.
8) They share their knowledge and experiences with others
Finally, quiet achievers are not selfish with their wisdom and experiences.
They understand that by sharing what they’ve learned along their journey, they can help others succeed as well. You’ll notice this selfless behavior, too.
None of that sitting in high school, covering up your answers since you know you studied hard but your friend did not and you’re not prepared to share your hard work.
No – whether it’s mentoring a colleague, writing a blog, or offering advice to a friend, these humble individuals are generous in passing on their knowledge.
This act of giving back not only benefits others, from which they gain great satisfaction but also enhances their own understanding and growth of new fields of study and new ideas.
That’s not to say you should rely on others completely, or give up all the fruits of your hard-earned labor.
But take a leaf out of the books of those who do share their insights and wisdom; you might be surprised by the positive impact it has on your journey to success.
On the path to success…
Quiet achievers possess unique behaviors that underpin their subtle yet significant successes.
While the world often craves loud and brash recognition, quiet achievers focus on personal growth, resilience, and contentment, learning the art of humility along the way.
They also understand that success is a highly individual concept, not something bound by societal norms nor a set standard we all abide by.
Each person’s idea of success is as unique as their fingerprints, and they respect this diversity.
Their stories inspire us to redefine success as the lasting impact we create within ourselves and for those around us.
So, whether you aim for personal growth, professional success, or to just improve the world around you, adopting the above behaviors (if you think yourself lacking) may be the key to your own quiet yet profound achievements.
Why not have a go at incorporating a few of these silent (yet deadly) behaviors – who knows how far they’ll take you?