There are so many factors that can play a role in determining our results, performance and ultimately our success, but some factors matter more than others. We asked folks what they felt was the most important factor driving their success.

Patrick Shearn | Creative Director at Poetic Kinetics

Stemming from many experiences in my upbringing and youth, I have found that saying yes to opportunities has been a fundamental force in my growth and success. I had amazing familial encouragement combined with many unusual opportunities. I had a safety net that allowed me to lean out into the winds of possibility, so I did, with a sense of confidence and trust. Physically, I learned what a human is capable of in terms of strength, endurance, and comfort. Later, challenges that seemed daunting were not that cold, that hard, or that steep. I often found myself being offered positions of responsibility far beyond what my age or experience level might have warranted. Knowing no better, I said yes, and took what was presented as normal. I often choose the new experiences or adventures to be had over money or security. Through this evolving process I learned a wide variety of skills that, while wildly disparate, would later strongly enhance my problem solving ability and creative ingenuity. Read more>>

Celeste Voce | Artist

Somewhat counterintuitively, my tendency to procrastinate is has become a huge asset to me. I have a propensity to overthink things, to the point that it stifles my creativity. Too much time makes either me overly ambitious or mired in self-doubt, to the point that I get so overwhelmed, I end up doing nothing. By working under a tight deadline, I can’t dwell on things. When I don’t have actual deadlines, I set artificial ones that are still fairly rigid. When I’m in this zone of focus and efficiency, I rely on my skill and intuition, which is where I find my best work. Read more>>

Jen Dela Resma | Photographer & Barista

Everyone talks about how if you want to be successful, you shouldn’t give up. How if you work hard, you can achieve anything – and it is true, absolutely! Yet one thing people often forget is sometimes it really is just luck – the right place, the right time, the right people. And that’s okay! It’s incredibly hard to not compare yourself to others, and something that has helped me immensely is remembering my journey is my own. I’m allowed to be happy for someone else while also wanting more for myself, so long as I remember everyone is on a different path. Read more>>

Jacqueline Fae | The Faery Matchmaker | CEO & Founder of I Deserve Love

The most important habits that help me to succeed in my career are 1) Networking! Your network is your net-worth and knowing all kinds of different people and learning more about how people communicate, love, fight, etc. is a huge benefit to me in my industry of matchmaking and coaching 2) Taking time for self-care (meditation, massage, and whatever my body tells me that it needs 3) Having a great support system, like my husband, to help me build my business from the ground up. Even the most independent and empowered people need someone that they can truly rely on while they navigate growing their business. Read more>>

Jacob Yoffee | Composer/Music Producer

Getting up early and devoting the first part of my day to my personal agenda has been the single most important habit of my career. Very often an email, phone call or text can send you on a trajectory set by somebody else and it’s important to secure time for your own goals each day. To clarify though I mean REALLY early – like 4 a.m. That way by the time the business messages start trickling in I’ve already got 5 or 6 hours in working on things I’d planned to address the night before. It was actually a tip from one of my mentors at NYU, Ira Newborn. He would say over and over again — get up at 4 a.m., put on a pot of coffee and get started. That’s the only way you’ll make it. The side effect was realizing I could actually work on my own to-do list before any new work requests came in. Read more>>

Alianna Perez | Music Artist & Producer

The most important factor behind my success is broken into 3 parts: a growth mindset, self-accountability, and a genuine heart. I am always eager to learn new things, expand my knowledge, and tap into others’ knowledge and thought processes. I put what I learn into practice, hold myself responsible for creating good habits, and hold myself accountable if I fall short of my goals. I approach my relationships with a genuine heart by building trust, showing support, and giving the same respect that I want to receive. These three keys not only keep my productivity up and grow my skills; they also allow me to create a brand that attracts other genuine humans and open up doors for more opportunities. Read more>>

Tiffy Diamond | Producer & YouTuber

The most important factor behind the success of my brand, Live Art Love, is not being afraid to try. When it comes to trying something new or pivoting, people can get wrapped up in fear. I embrace new opportunities and the challenges that come along with them. The challenge is what makes working for yourself fun and exciting. When working for yourself, you’re often faced with unique obstacles because you have a smaller team or are handling the work on your own. You have to be able to recognize what’s working and what needs to be changed. One of the advantages of being a small business is that it makes you more nimble and changes are easier to implement; I love to brainstorm with my business partner on new ideas to test out. You build a tough skin while working in the creative field. As my mom taught me, the worst thing a person can say is no, so ask for opportunities and never be afraid of rejection. Read more>>

Madeleine Holly-Rosing | Writer/Creator of Graphic Novels and Prose Stories

Mentors. I was extremely fortunate in that the from the beginning I had some incredible mentors and colleagues who not only gave me critical insight into the business, great critical feedback, but also encouraged me to pursue a career writing graphic novels. I can’t tell you how important it is to have one or more people take the time to educate you on not only the business end, but the creative side as well. Read more>>

Lucy Orich | Embroidery Artist

The most important factor behind the success of my embroidery business has been community. No one succeeds alone! When first starting out, I relied on my personal community of friends and family for support and encouragement. They helped spread my work to others, and built up my confidence as an artist. As a vendor, I’ve immersed myself in the community of maker markets, live events, and local artists in my city. I got to know the wonderful people who run the events, and became friends with the other vendors. We are always recommending each other to be fellow vendors and encouraging each other’s businesses to grow! On my social media platform I have become a part of the inspiring embroidery community. We like each others posts, promote each other, and send each other ideas or discuss projects. Through these communities it has taught me that one person’s success is not another’s failure, that we can all bring each other up through creativity, support, and encouragement. Read more>>

Melody Mohammadi | Law Student & Entrepreneur

Sweet & Chill was created in the heart of Los Angeles to pair the finest quality of CBD with the freshest confectionary goods to create products our consumers would love. By tasting each product multiple times, to searching for the perfect manufacturer, packaging, and design, each step was made with the intention to create a high-end product our consumers would love at a price they could afford. I created Sweet & Chill with one goal in mind: to break the stigma behind CBD. I, myself, was so skeptical about CBD until a few years ago because of all the associations behind it I had seen in the media, but I never truly realized how many of those things were further from the truth when I did my own research. I realized that so many CBD products advertised false effects, like CBD would get you high and that it was the same as marijuana, when in reality it is not. Several of these CBD products had images on their packaging that had turned me away from ever trying it. Read more>>

Raashi Kulkarni | Composer & Pianist

I’ve been following the same mantra for almost a decade and truly believe it is the reason behind my success and happiness: “Passion. Perseverance. Patience.” There is no substitute for hard work, and honing the skills of my passion for music has been instrumental in progressing my career forward. Having perseverance amid setbacks is a must. I’ve used those setbacks as fuel to continue working with gratitude, humility, and dedication. Finally, patience is key. We live in a world where instantaneous gratification has become rather commonplace and almost expected. I’ve learned that things may not happen when we want them to, but they do happen when we need them to. Read more>>

Francina Juncaj | Actress & Model

Having supportive family and friends has been the most important factor to me and my career. I’ve always been confident and had a plan to pursue acting since I was young. Having people I love around me continue to motivate and push me beyond limits set me up for success more than I can imagine. I want my brand to embody family and love and I wouldn’t be where I am today without them. Read more>>

Rhea Pitre | Life + Relationship Coach | Host | Curator of Conversations

Authenticity is the utmost important factor behind the success of my brand. Everything I do must be anchored with the purpose that I know I hold, which is to uplift and encourage others. Being a new business owner and learning new lessons daily about brand building and solidifying my message have been overwhelming at times. One thing that I always want to hold tightly to when creating something that represents my brand, whether it be through speaking, coaching, writing, or producing…is that it must have my voice, represent my core values, and resonate with who I am and what I believe when no one is watching. Read more>>

Andrea Eppolito | Weddings, Events, and Lifestyle

A relentless pursuit of beauty and resilience in the face of any obstacle has been the greatest driver of my success. I truly believe that you cannot beat someone who will not quit, and so every day in every way I wake up committed to making the world a more beautiful place for my clients. Whether I am designing their wedding reception or their dining room, my goal is always to leave their world better than it was before I entered it. I believe that there is always an answer, and always another way to accomplish what we need to do. That has helped me navigate through design challenges, interpersonal issues, and operational difficulty because I really believe that the obstacle in front of us is just a thing that needs to be managed and that there is success on the other side. Read more>>

Silke Fernald | Broker Associate at ACME Real Estate

I believe tenacity and a clear goal are essential for a successful career in Real Estate. To do it right and to do it well requires commitment and a strong work ethic.  I owe that to my clients. They trust me with their largest investment, and that trust has to be earned and kept. Performing with excellence and attention to detail, along with being on top of things at all times is the most important factor to success.  Constantly reinvent, stay ahead of the game, and continue to educate yourself.  ACME Real Estate is a boutique Brokerage that does exactly that.  We are Los Angele's hottest address for beautiful homes that are on par with current design trends. We are outside the box thinkers and constantly re-inventing. Design savvy buyers come to ACME because they know they will find exactly what they are looking for. Read more>>

Jason Williams | Writer, Illustrator, Art Teacher, Youtube Platform Host

Regarding “The Storytime Show” on Youtube. Kids The needs of kids. The emotional needs of kids – specifically, especially now in a time when they are separated from their friends and extended family. I think I never really forgot how to be a kid, in a world of screaming SpongeBobs, I think sometimes kids need a little time to chill and daydream and wonder and listen to something less explosive. I want to create a space where kids can still feel entertained but also feel safe and experience their feelings and have them validated. In a time of Sesame Street, Dusty’s treehouse, Reading Rainbow and Captain Kangaroo, we were the first generation of virtual learners for both academic and emotional education. I want to give kids that same feeling of being centered and that same confidence that we were taught by the likes of Fred Rogers. Read more>>

Kris Kehasukjaren | Artist

I’d say the most important factor to any success I’ve had is commitment. I think once you’ve decided to do something that you should pour 100% of yourself into it whether you’re passionate about it or not. The commitment creates consistency and makes you dependable not just to other people but to yourself as well. A lot of art is about feeling and inspiration but sometimes just the sheer act of determination and persistence can allow for some of that spontaneity and creativity to appear in between. Read more>>

Remi | Artist, Songwriter & Producer

I have always looked for the positive in any given situation. It comes as second nature to me. I guess you could call it a habit, one I developed early on in my childhood along with the help of an extremely vivid imagination. Growing up in Minneapolis, I spent the endless cold winters, yearning and dreaming, going deep into my alternate reality inspired and mesmerized by pictures of Disneyland. I’d daydream about flying on the Dumbo ride, or whirling around in giant teacups. Pure escapism. I even thought the Flintstones lived in California because that’s where palm trees grew and Fred and the gang were always running around barefoot in a virtual warm and sunny forever land cartoonscape. This was the climate I craved. Wherever California was, that’s where I wanted to be. It was my daydreaming and desire that got me to California. When it came time to choose a college, I knew academics were not for me. If I was going to pay for my education, I wanted it to be something I was passionate about. Read more>>

Tori Griffin | Stylist & Owner of DMT Vintage

I think it is a mix between nostalgia for the Millennials and the discovery for the younger generations. As a stylist, I am able to use my archive of these late 90s/Y2K pieces and style them in a very relevant and modern way that is fun, refreshing, and reminiscent of the Pop Culture I grew up on. Read more>>

Liz Mahlow | Principal at Nous Structural Engineering

At my core is a passion for the work I do and a genuine pride in the quality of work our firm delivers. I am a founding partner at Nous Engineering, a structural engineering firm located in downtown Los Angeles. Since starting Nous in 2012, a large part of our portfolio has been working on hospitals and schools in developing communities throughout Africa. We are committed to making a positive impact on our industry and the world and that drive persists across all of our projects. Whether working on affordable housing projects for RestoreNeighborhoodsLA (RNLA) with Lehrer Architects and other Backyard Home projects with LA Mas to their LA City ADU pilot project, we are encouraged and invigorated in our contribution to building thriving and sustainable buildings and neighborhoods. Read more>>

Anna-Katharina Benz | Actress and Artist

Getting excited for a role. Imagining and manifesting every part of the process that brings me joy and makes me smile. To me there is no better motivator. Getting excited like that about whatever job or part you get will give you energy and imagination that just stands out and becomes contagious. It makes you want to put more work in than other actors. Discipline and some sort of meditation/breath work. Being able to ground yourself in reality and being calm collected an professional, to me is a crucial step 2. It lets you channel that excitement and gives you focus and intent. Being good to myself and my body. Caring for your mental and physical health on your off days is just as important as all the work you do on your on days. Read more>>

Audrey DuBiel | Founder/Owner

We connect with every person that walks through our doors and give each a shopping experience that’s so much more than just shopping because we open our hearts as much as we open the doors of our shop. We also strive to stay current with trends and offer styling that can go from decade to decade to meet and encourage each customer’s fashion journey. We follow that same tone of encouragement on our social media platforms as well. Guiding our followers for the latest cuteness that has landed in our boutique in our clothing, gifts, accessories, and more! And more than anything else, even our products, we also use our socials as another way to connect. For those that are not local, we strive to connect to audrey *k customers everywhere through comedy, honesty, and always keeping it real! As a team, our greatest desire is to be here for our customers on a professional and personal level, giving joy and stying advice. Read more>>

Norris Duckett III | Photographer Artist Educator

Some key elements that have helped with my success are time management, logging inspirational ideas, and the need to achieve set goals for whatever it is I’m doing. Some tools that have helped in my success are learning about the business end and the in and outs of it. The artistic portion has already been in me and over time I learned how to improve with practice and proper critique. Read more>>

Tigran Sargsyan | Dancer

The most important factor behind my success is commitment on whatever my focus is! It is challenging in current society with so many distractions or so many opportunities to focus only on few things. But where I find myself successful is to write down what my possible end goal can be, what can I give and what can I gain, and then really committing myself, and focus my energy towards it. Read more>>

Ofelia Aragon | Owner of Mothering the Mothers, Inc a Doula, Nanny, and Lactation Services Company.

My name is Ofelia C. Aragon. I was raised in Guatemala, raised catholic, and believed in God above all things. Growing up in Guatemala, I witnessed the hardships that my mother and father faced growing up. Living under humble means gave me the strength and fortitude to believe in myself and never look back. Growing up, my parents taught me the importance of self-respect and striving to be the best person you can be. At a young age, I recognized that I had something in me that wanted to serve others before serving myself and to one day have a family of my own. Having a family requires great responsibility since it means the continuation of oneself. When a woman decides to have a family and take on this responsibility, this decision should always be supported and protected because having a family is glorious. I believe firmly in the importance of the family and that a family requires work, love, and patience every day from the moment one wakes to the moment one sleeps. Read more>>

Austin Soutas | Digital Marketing Agency

Having the habits of self motivation, the will to win and the want to be successful are what helps me strive to be successful. Read more>>

Nicole McIntyre | Tutor & Educational Manager

Habits are absolutely fascinating. The one most impactful habit that I have developed is the habit of learning. While cooking, driving, and doing chores, I listen to educational podcasts. Not only does this help me pass the time, but it makes everyday chores so much more enjoyable. Further, I have now built the habit of creating rules for my life. If I find that something is not working (i.e., I am inexplicably irritable or having a bad day), I stop myself and try to identify what the underlying cause is. Then, I think of a way to prevent myself from ending up in that situation again. For me, this often comes in the form of a life rule. For example, I have now created a rule of not making any plans for Sundays. This gives me one day of the week that I have nothing planned and no responsibilities. It allows me to turn the day into whatever I so desire; sometimes it starts with coffee with a friend, but often times it turns into something much more solitude, such as doing a paint-by-numbers or writing poetry. Read more>>

Ms. Samantha Jewell | Self Esteem Writer & Tea Herbalist

The most important factor behind my success as a writer and craftor: Lady Belle a’ Soi ~ ~ Beautiful to OneSelf ~ is to inspire Beautiful Inner Dialogue & Self Esteem. Read more>>

Dr. Robby Gordon | Artist, Founder & Curator of The Hollywood Sculpture Garden

I have always had goals in my life, I’ve always been very driven. However, I truly believe that the key to my achievements has been the fact that I’ve never felt permanently or irreversibly attached to these goals or their performance. I always knew what I wanted to do, without being attached to the result. I’m a perfectionist, but I believe that if something comes out differently from what I initially had in mind, then it was supposed to be that way. I’m open to the fluidity and uncertainty of art and its outcomes. Layer upon layer of my work is infused with different energy and psyche — I want to create a piece that I cannot myself trace back to its synthesis. That’s what has made it possible for me to achieve whatever I wanted in life, without being upset along the way if things didn’t work out precisely as planned. I enjoy the beauty of uncertainty and change and don’t allow myself to be restricted by the limitations of a set template. Working this way means that there is no limit to my creative process. Read more>>