Warren Buffett Says This Sets Really Successful People Apart

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  • Warren Buffett is one of the best investors of all time.
  • He thinks really successful people set themselves apart by saying no to almost everything (such as hot new investments) and staying within their circles of competence

Should you listen to this Warren Buffett advice?

If you're hoping to be very successful professionally or financially, it can help to pay attention to tips from others who have achieved that dream.

Warren Buffett is one of those people whose advice you may want to listen to. The self-made billionaire is one of the greatest investors of all time and he's managed to build a large business empire that afforded him untold wealth.

Buffett gave one simple explanation of what sets "really" successful people apart from others, and this advice especially is worth taking into account when making your own life choices. 

Could this be the key to true success?

So, what does Buffett think sets successful people apart from others?

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"The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything," Buffett said. 

Buffett has implemented this strategy himself, opting out of certain types of hot investments even as others jumped aboard. One example is cryptocurrency, which the famed investor repeatedly made clear that he was not interested in investing in, even when a growing number of Americans were embracing this asset class. 

Buffett was also slow to jump into technology stocks in the early 1990s and 2000s, but years later he indicated he was not regretful of the fact he'd stayed out even though there were some missed opportunities.

"I don't worry about the things I miss that are outside my circle of competence of evaluating," Buffett said. "It's not a mistake because I miss Netscape or something like that.”

Should you take this advice?

Buffett's advice can be helpful when you're making decisions about what to do with the money in your brokerage account. There are tons of people out there who may try to convince you to invest in something either because they get a fee or commission for doing so or because they really believe it's the right course of action (even if they don't necessarily know if it's right for you). 

You shouldn't necessarily jump on many or most of these ideas, but instead should develop your own solid investment plans and stick to them while saying no to everything outside of your comfort zone. 

But, Buffett's advice can actually go far beyond just saying no to investments that don't fit in with your careful plans. It can also apply to other financial and life decisions you make as well. For example, you don't want to overcommit yourself to activities you don't enjoy, and you don't want to say yes to spending money on things you don't value just to keep up with the Joneses or because you feel like it's the common thing to do. 

If you define how you want your personal and financial life to look, you can set clear boundaries and say no to anything that doesn't fit into them. It may feel uncomfortable not to do what everyone else says or what others are asking you to, but you're in the best position to set yourself up for the future you want. You should avoid saying yes to anything that would lead you off that path.

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