Successful People Vs Unsuccessful People – Which One Are You?

Are You Using Blacklisted Backlinks? Check Now

Not really my typical tutorial but a life changing topic.

A friend of mine posted about this successful people Vs unsuccessful people poster on Facebook the other day so I thought I would share it with you guys.

I think this really highlights the true differences between someone that is truly successful and someone that is unsuccessful.

Although in some respects I fall into both categories.

I’ve got some work to do it would seem!

Successful People Vs Unsuccessful People Poster

If you go through each list, which group of people do you share the most traits with?

I don’t think anyone is 100% one group or 100% the other, after all we are only human!

Never forget that successful people do what unsuccessful people won’t.
But looking at this chart should give you a good idea of where you are right now and what you should be working on to adopt the mindset of success as quickly as possible.

What The Mind Can Conceive & Believe – It Can Achieve

Building on those traits further I wanted to share a video from Napoleon Hill called ‘What The Mind Can Conceive & Believe – It Can Achieve’ that my Dad showed me when I was younger.

I highly recommend you want the entire video and if you don’t know who Napoleon Hill is, you need to!

YouTube video

He is the leading author of personal success literature. His work focuses on how the power of personal beliefs play a key role in personal success.

I highly recommend you read his book ‘Think & Grow Rich’ which has sold over 70 million copies since it was first published in 1937 and is still a top 10 seller to this day.

This book has had a strong influence on me since the first time I read it and I have read it multiple times since then, each time reflecting and learning something new.

So which envelope are you currently holding?

108 Responses

  1. Ram

    Indeed true… It holds good not only for successful and unsuccessful but also for:
    1.sane and insane
    2.high and low intellect
    3.broad minded and narrow minded

    • Matthew Woodward
      August 24th, 2022 at 8:48 am


  2. Elon@Musk112233

    Nice and a very helpful post. Keep making more.

    • Matthew Woodward
      December 9th, 2020 at 9:19 am

      No worries! More are coming!

  3. Justin

    Another great author in this area is Dr Robert Anthony. He’s written several books and released audio programs. Two of his great books are “Ultimate Secrets of Total Self Confidence” and “Beyond Positive Thinking”

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 24th, 2020 at 11:23 am

      Thank you for sharing this information with us, Justin!
      I’ll definitely have a look at these books!

  4. sophiadaisy

    Wow That’s all true. Unsuccessful people always blame others.

    • Matthew Woodward
      October 29th, 2019 at 3:01 am

      Certainly in my experience

  5. contact hp2

    Lovely post keeps posting this informative information with us.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 25th, 2019 at 4:45 am

      I certainly will do :)

  6. David

    Solid info!

    • Matthew Woodward
      February 6th, 2019 at 8:50 am

      Cheers David!

  7. Isah Musah

    I never thought this will be this long, I could not agree more to be successful or unsuccessful. Thou I think I need to put more effort in achieving my dreams.thanks Matt.

    • Matthew Woodward
      June 19th, 2018 at 9:56 am

      Hey Isah no problem. The harder you work the more successful you will become!

  8. Harshit

    Amazing post and some different idea of posting. Do need to implement some of these for my betterment. Thank you

    • Matthew Woodward
      May 1st, 2018 at 10:19 am

      No worries, hopefully you will become a successful person :)


    Infographic is spot on. I also saw it circulating around Facebook a few days ago. The idea about what attitudes of mind are required for true success is sobering to think about. It’s a powerful antidote, though, for us when we slip into modes of thinking and acting that are characteristic of the unsuccessful. Man, I have a lot of reflecting to do!

    Thanks, Matt.

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 3rd, 2018 at 11:25 am

      No problem Jamaal

  10. Diana Gutierrez

    What an awsome blog you have. I am your follower from some time ago and you always have good tips for everyone.Thanks for sharing your knowledge with your readers.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 11th, 2017 at 11:33 am

      Thanks Diana!

  11. /

    Successful people go positive and tolerant through life. Whoever does not allow strangers to remain a lonely, unsuccessful hater.

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 4th, 2017 at 11:53 am

      That is very true indeed!

  12. Mehak

    Some of the qualities are from successful people….Good article boss.

    • Matthew Woodward
      February 27th, 2017 at 10:35 am

      Thanks Mehak!

  13. Elsa

    So catchy, that my eyes won’t end it reading till the end. I really appreciate how you differentiate the two. It is simple and easy to understand, now I know how to distinguish a person on his own character. Thanks Matt.

    • Matthew Woodward
      September 26th, 2016 at 11:47 am

      No problem Elsa!

  14. Tom Canavino

    Great insights come from this book, My father gave me his copy when I was in my early twenties ( I’m now 64 ), I still have that old book with the tattered pages on my book shelf in my office.
    I have opened several successful companies in my life and have been engaged in the online marketing, SEO business for around 6 years now. I would like to think that the inspiration to be successful in life was due in some part from the words of Napoleon Hill!
    Good Luck To All Of Us!
    Tom Canavino

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 15th, 2016 at 9:55 am

      That is great to hear Tom! Amazing how much impact one book can have

  15. Mehak

    This is really interesting. I would like to enroll in successful persons and one day, I will

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 15th, 2016 at 9:58 am

      Make that day today :)

  16. Nikhil

    Hey Matthew,
    it would be interesting to know the categories you are common in…

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 6th, 2016 at 10:45 am

      What do you mean?

  17. Asaf

    excellent post. i really believe that setting our mind to a positive and reliable mode can help – “us and them” (pink floyd)

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 30th, 2015 at 3:58 am

      Yes it makes a huge difference :)

  18. Braydon

    There is another great free book out there I would highly recommend called the science of getting rich.

  19. Lev

    I just listened to the video…. it gave me a shiver – powerful is an understatement!!!!

    Unfortunately I’m living the life of the person with the envelope entitled “penalties”

    Please continue posting more of this man’s speaches.

    • Matthew Woodward
      August 21st, 2014 at 3:48 pm

      I suggest you read his book :)

  20. Lev

    Love this post (and your honesty & humility) mate.

    On linkedin today someone wrote that “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

    • Matthew Woodward
      August 21st, 2014 at 3:48 pm

      That is very true, unfortunately schools teach us not to make mistakes and they are bad.

  21. Ani

    Hey Matt,

    Absolutely love the info-graphic – so succinct and yet so powerful. For me “learning continuously” will have to be the “best” trait of a successful person.


    • Matthew Woodward
      July 29th, 2014 at 6:01 pm

      I think that understanding failure is a requirement and not something to be scared of is the biggest trait.

  22. Abhay

    After reading This, I realize i have to change many things in my life to be successful. Thanks Matthew bro.

    • Matthew Woodward
      July 13th, 2014 at 12:27 am

      We are all on the same journey :)

  23. Patrick

    Had to bend it slightly but thik I just managed to fall into the successful people

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 12th, 2014 at 12:28 pm

      I live on both sides of the fence

  24. Anmol Makkar

    Matthew you’re awesome. :)

    I loved the epic lines from John Chow you wrote on your Facebook and yes this post too ;).

    • Matthew Woodward
      March 22nd, 2014 at 9:12 am

      Thanks :) Kudos to John!

  25. Harshajyoti Das

    It’s really nice to see some motivational content coming from you. We all need that…

    • Matthew Woodward
      March 12th, 2014 at 8:31 am

      Thanks :)

  26. Adam Finan

    Think & Grow Rich changed my mindset on money and success. Pre-internet, pro-capitalist, philosophical wisdom from Mr.Hill!

    • Matthew Woodward
      February 25th, 2014 at 8:33 am

      Glad you took take time read it :)

  27. Arkadi

    Napoleon Hill at the time was the first to find the roots of success. A forerunner.

    From what I’ve seen, heard and read, I would suggest a couple more:
    – 10 minutes to Change your Life with Jim Rohn, at its best. A short video here that almost know it by heart.

    – The Phoenix Seminar, Brian Tracy. A complete manual of life that covers all important aspects for self improvement. In my case I have it in audiobook format on my phone to always re-listen and stay on track. Essential.

    To organize your life:
    – Getting Things Done – GTD, David Allen. There are people who adopted this system in an almost evangelical.
    I recommend reading his book, but you can go directly to the second part, which is promptly the “productive” part (the first is a bit extensive).

    I hope will be helpful (for those who do not know the authors) and sorry for my bad English.
    Good Life for All ! :-)

    • Matthew Woodward
      December 18th, 2013 at 10:40 am

      Nice video added to my watch list for lunch one day thanks! Always love short 10-20 min videos for that :)

      In terms of GTD I’m using but thats more of a system than a teaching/methodology

      Thanks for the great shares

      • Arkadi
        December 18th, 2013 at 5:43 pm

        Hi Matt. I’ve seen that you recommend that page before, but appears to be out of service. Do not know if it’s a temporary thing, but it passed several days already. I wish it to return because I saw on Google that has to do with GTD.

        Thanks for answering and I hope you enjoy the material.

        • Matthew Woodward
          December 19th, 2013 at 9:07 am


          Its loading here?

  28. Roxana

    Well, some of this stuff is true.
    Don’t want to sound trolling or something, but why is the successful form a woman and the other unfortunate fellow a man? :D

    p.s. I’m a woman, got lost in details.

    • Matthew Woodward
      November 14th, 2013 at 12:42 pm

      Hahaha I’m not sure to be honest, I didn’t create the graphic but perhaps thats just the world we live in now ^^

      • Roxana
        November 14th, 2013 at 10:36 pm

        Joke aside, I listened to this podcast the other day and they had a guest who launched his business a while back with a $500 USD budget, worked his way up with VA freelancers. And the guy discussed the overall success of his business. At one point he mentioned something really interesting: he said you should “work on a business, not in a business” in order to be successful.

        While I don’t find this statement on infographics and motivational collages, I sort of agree with his saying. :)

        • Matthew Woodward
          November 16th, 2013 at 4:15 pm

          Got a link?

          I’m going to launch the $100 case study shortly ;)

  29. Nichola

    Nice post. i have learnt a lot and i am going to put them into practice. Thanks

    • Matthew Woodward
      October 18th, 2013 at 11:13 am

      No worrys :)

  30. andrewkarx

    Nice post Matt!

    What’s interesting about Napoleon Hill is the fact that he was actually almost broke for most of the time. He was a great teacher and had great knowledge and wisdom, but wasn’t that good at execution of these ideas.
    Still, words and knowledge he gave us is valid today and will be for eternity.

    If you would like to know more about Napoleon Hill watch some stuff from Dan Kennedy, he seems to have a lot of very interesting information.

    Regarding iconographic, well it looks like I have done a lot of good work on myself. And I feel successful each day I wake up and then waiting for more good things to happen ;) (and they are coming in a form of good clients, more business, better physical condition and personal life…).

    Life is cool. Especially if you can do some SEO :P

    • Matthew Woodward
      October 4th, 2013 at 8:54 am


      Interesting fact – although I wonder if it just wasn’t about the money for him?

      The harder you work the luckier you get!

  31. Daisy Samantha

    Thanks for sharing this post..


    • Matthew Woodward
      August 21st, 2013 at 6:16 pm

      The pleasure is mine :)

  32. Phil

    Hey Matt,

    amazing post. And so true. Although I would not abandon TV totally (I love Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones and a good movie or documentary here and there) there still is a lot of crap delivered (as mentioned above). All this scripted reality bs, simply disgusting!

    Regarding Napoleon Hill: Yes, he truly is the master and the video is an all time classic. And you know what’s best? Some of his more important works are available in the public domain. Besides the video above (everyone, bookmark that!) you can have a look for his book “think and grow rich” at in the texts section.

    However, there is a much bigger work from him called “The Law of Success in 16 lessons”. Think and grow rich seems to be the condensed version of this multi-volume epic masterpiece. Although some of the concepts are outdate (there is no such thing as the ether, he describes) the overall content is pure diamond (not just gold *gg*). Apply it and be successful forever ;) You can even make a nice video course out of it and sell it online for e. g. $147 per sale :) You know what? Here’s my challenge to the readers of this blog, mail me at philipp [at] kowisoft dot de and we’ll start working on that together (I’m pretty good at creating online learning)…

    Again, Matt, amazing stuff as always, also liked the infographic


    • Matthew Woodward
      August 14th, 2013 at 8:34 am


      Yeah I agree with that, cant beat winding down with a good episode!

      I hadnt actually heard of the law of success will be sure to check it out though!

      • Phil
        August 14th, 2013 at 8:55 am

        here is the link to it for reading this monster (1170 pages) online:


        (replace xx)

        • Matthew Woodward
          August 14th, 2013 at 1:14 pm

          Thanks =D

  33. Daniel Baldwin

    Nice encouraging post Matt, though I will say that, in terms of self-help, I personally think it’s just that self help. Of the millions of self help titles out there, you really have to find the ones that speak to you on a personal level.

    Most self-help experts have an ability to give the impression that they are communicating with you on a personal level, heck that’s what they make a living out of, but in reality the trick is to not fall for the superficial content and instead focus on whether you (the person following the self-help advice) are in fact able to accomplish what is set out.

    What works for some, does not work for others, this is a simple fact. just because one experts techniques don’t work for you doesn’t mean that you’re destined to a life subservient shelf stacking, it simply means that you have not yet found the material that appeals to you on a personal level.

    anyway, thought I’d share a link to a book written by the founders of 37Signals that I found really informative, particularly if (like me) you think that traditional business models and strategies are stuffy and outdated. Enjoy!

    • Matthew Woodward
      May 10th, 2013 at 11:01 am


      The only self help expert anyone needs is Napoleon Hill in my opinion. Obviously you still have to help yourself but he opened up the mindset/methodology of thinking to me in a way I didn’t know was possible before if that makes any sense what so ever lol

      I don’t believe there is any specific technique that is needed over and above the desire to improve.

      I like your shelf stacking comparison – personally I find a lot of people get stuck in that rut and don’t push themselves to improve and feel trapped in that position leading to self doubt.

      I know lots of people that ‘wish’ they could do x,y or z. Usually the next sentence that comes out of there mouth starts with ‘but’ then list reasons they cant do it before they have even started.

      Where as I just decide what I want to do, then do it.

      Thanks for the book recommendation – could have done with that before my 2 long haul trips last week :P Ordered it!

  34. Sanjay Shenoy

    Very nice post Matthew but I think its a little generalized is what I believe. You don’t HAVE to keep a journal to be successful of course it helps but its not compulsory.

    The to do list also, having a to do list is not enough, doing the things in the to do list is very important. This post kind of reminds of my moral science text book ( yes we had to “study” that crap )

    But then again like someone said, these kind of things kind of give you a wake up call, there were certain things that really did interest me in this post and a post like this on an IM blog is a welcome change.

    Keep up the good work Matthew!

    • Matthew Woodward
      May 2nd, 2013 at 6:48 pm


      Well yes its a very simple look at it but for the most part it is true.

      Having a well organising list is critical which is why I use this system

      This allows you to keep focused and produce lots more work in less time :)

      Would you like to see more posts about mindset/motivation/self confidence/positive thinking? It’s an area I have learnt a lot about throughout my life

      • reece
        October 7th, 2019 at 3:02 pm

        Yes Mathew

        go for it!

  35. Mitch

    Yep nice change of topic Matt, would like to see some more posts on this but just every now and then.

    It’s a nice reminder to pay attention to these areas too, but your SEO stuff is the doggies nishkas!

    Keep it coming bro!

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 11th, 2013 at 8:25 am


      I would say my SEO/IM stuff is only as sharp as it is because of this underlying subject/method of thinking/approach to life ^^

  36. Bastian

    Agree, i also recommend everyone to read it. Think And Grow Rich is a mind blowing book. :)

    Sweet infographic btw, i can cross TV on my list, don’t like to watch them, simply a waste of time. Specially in my country where TV shows are full with soap operas, almost 24/7! :-p

    • Matthew Woodward
      April 10th, 2013 at 3:14 pm


      Some TV is good – I love a good series to get into and its the perfect way to wind the mind down after jumping around the place all day!

  37. Karen

    Really interesting infographic Matthew, thanks for posting it. I see I still have a few unsuccessful habits I need to ditch… like holding grudges.

    I do watch TV probably 5 days out of 7… but I put in a lot more hours reading.

    There is still some TV out there that’s worthwhile. Watching David Attenborough’s “Africa” last week in HD made me glad to be alive :)

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 8th, 2013 at 9:49 am

      Well I think its ok if you sit on both side of the infographic, I know I do =D

      I have a good mix of TV and reading – but generally while watching TV I am thinking IM so =\

      Saw Africa advertised last night actually will check that out (sod the infographic :P )

    • Mudassar
      September 27th, 2013 at 7:07 am

      I think Some thing do vary people to people like it is not compulsory that Watching TV make people UN-successful. A lot of people who watching tv daily couple of hours but they are success ed in their fields,

      • Matthew Woodward
        September 28th, 2013 at 9:59 am

        That is true but I think thats more in reference to when you get home from work you just sit on your arse in front of the TV type thing ^^

  38. Sanjay

    Napoleon Hill for the win. Setup a five year plan for yourself and be very specific about the goals. Be specific about what kind of job situation you’ll be in, what sort of situation your relationships will be in etc. etc.

    Then break it down into annual and even monthly/weekly sub goals of what you will be doing to achieve that.

    If you can just go through this exercise and review your goals on a daily basis it’s amazing how effortless change will be.

    I did this 2yrs ago and completed all of the 5yr goals 3yrs early. These were aggressive goals around earning a lot of money and doing a lot of things.

    I keep my goals saved in Evernote so I can easily review them on my smartphone, laptop and work computer.

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 6th, 2013 at 1:19 pm

      Thats a very wise approach Sanjay – I find that having your goals written down on a bit of paper and as daft as it sounds reading them out loud each day is a huge drive forward. A very simple change that a lot of people will feel stupid doing but it works!

      I like how you break it down further though into bitesize chunks!

      What has helped me recently and might be of benefit to you as an Evernote user is – that has helped me to get more done than I ever have before even though I already worked at a fast pace.

  39. Lewis Saka

    Mixing self-help with practical IM articles is much appreciated. We all need a boost every now and again

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 6th, 2013 at 1:14 pm

      Well I got a whole stack of knowledge to share on these kind of subjects, is this something you would like to see more of?

  40. Dustin

    Nice post Matt. I like how “watch tv” is in there on the unsuccessful people side. I hate television. And everyone reading this should too. The stupid television isn’t going to help me in any way, nor is it going to make me any money. Books and Internet is all I need and all I love.

    I do watch a movie like once a month or so. But educational type of documentaries. Not bs. Because the bs the television feeds us serves no purpose in my mind.

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 5th, 2013 at 12:47 pm

      Well I don’t necessarily agree with that one – I like my TV series and if I’m doing something like thinking about a sales funnel / user journey / problem I’ll quite often sly away and watch an episode while collecting my thoughts. But sometimes I end up passively thinking about things for weeks – so many ways to put the pieces of the puzzle together, its just finding the way that extracts the most value :)

      I do however spend a stupid amount of time reading marketing/internet related material and bought a Transformer Pad for that very purpose :)

      Do you have any marketing/IM/SEO related tutorials/videos/confrences you would recommend a watch?

  41. NIc

    I must have know you weren’t attracting your success subconsciously…;-)
    Napoleon Hill has been a great soul, I also suggest Abraham-Hicks books and videos… they are Napoleon on steroids :-)

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 5th, 2013 at 12:47 pm


      I hadn’t heard of Abraham-Hicks – is there a particular book you would recommend?

      • Niccolò
        January 11th, 2013 at 2:03 pm

        I would suggest:
        “ask and it is given” – abraham hicks

        • Matthew Woodward
          January 12th, 2013 at 4:51 pm

          Thanks for the suggestion will check it out!

  42. Chris @ JumboCD

    So I like how the successful background is of a women and the unsuccessful is a man. Wait, I am being critical and I am a man. Maybe it fits.

    There are many reasons men and women are different and each can be successful despite that. I believe most important is an attitude of not giving up, being honest, and remembering that we are each made unique and special and have value. Recognize that value in others. Look below the surface.

    Nice post to start the new year. Say this to yourself, “I [insert your name] have value” throughout the day. Your subconscious feeds of the message you send it. :O)

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 4th, 2013 at 5:28 pm

      Or you could just what I do, tuck it between your legs and have the best of both worlds!

      • Jon-Kristian
        May 28th, 2014 at 8:17 pm

        Lol. Reminds me of the jazz singer George Melly.

        He had a similar gag but his was:

        Man, Women, Bulldog.

        He generally performed this legendary offence after a bottle of whiskey and when standing on a table at a jazz club…….

  43. Jacob King

    Napoleon Hill is such a beast.

  44. Mike Buyco

    It seems there are still a lot of things I need to learn to be successful. :)

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 4th, 2013 at 2:02 pm

      Then you already have a successful mindset ^^

      • Lisa
        January 5th, 2013 at 7:39 pm

        I couldn’t agree more!

        • Matthew Woodward
          January 6th, 2013 at 1:14 pm

          A simple look at it but true for the most part :)

  45. alfred

    like your blog,learning seo skills in order to earn some money though my english is not pretty good.

    thanks.hope someday i could share my success with you

    • Matthew Woodward
      January 4th, 2013 at 12:20 pm

      Good luck with your ventures throughout the new year Alfred :)

      • alfred
        January 8th, 2013 at 9:47 am

        hi, could you share me which wordpress theme you are using this blog?thanks,

        • Matthew Woodward
          January 8th, 2013 at 11:25 am

          Convergence with some changes :)

          • Markus Lowien
            February 19th, 2014 at 6:21 pm

            Hi Matthew,

            I’m interested in exactly that changes you made.
            Especially the Header (Picture)



          • Matthew Woodward
            February 20th, 2014 at 9:26 am

            Awww man I have no idea exactly what. I’ve been hacking the theme/changing things for well over a year now! Just compare home page vs home page, blog post vs blog post etc

    • Andy
      January 9th, 2013 at 10:05 am

      Alfred, you need to turn your lack of english in to a strength. So many more niches are much less competitive in foreign languages.

      • Matthew Woodward
        January 12th, 2013 at 4:47 pm

        That is VERY TRUE indeed there is an awful lot going on in emerging niches if you can talk the language :) I can’t :P

What are your thoughts?

* Name, Email, Comment are Required