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American leadership specialist and author Stephen R. Covey gave us seven habits of highly effective people in his best-selling book of the same name.

Now, in his Positivity newsletter, Swedish blogger Henrik Edberg offers us an equally valuable list of six habits of highly ineffective people:

Not showing up

Woody Allen said that "80 per cent of success is just showing up."

And Mr. Edberg concurs, saying that one of the biggest - and simplest - things you can do to ensure more success in life is to show up more.

If you spend more time at an endeavour, you will become more proficient.

Procrastinating half the day

If you're wasting time, you might as well have not shown up. To avoid procrastinating, Mr. Edberg insists that you tackle the most important task at the outset of the day, giving you momentum.

Also, split up tasks into small actionable steps so they don't seem so overwhelming.

Focusing on the unimportant

Another dangerous habit is to keep yourself busy with unimportant tasks.

He recommends following the Pareto principle, which postulates that 80 per cent of your results flow from only 20 per cent of your tasks and activities.

Find out what those productive tasks are, and write down three to tackle at the start of each day.

Thinking too much

Avoid paralysis by analysis - that is, spending all your time thinking and not much time doing.

"You don't have to examine everything from every angle before you try it. And you can't wait for the perfect time to do something. That time never comes," Mr. Edberg notes.

"And if you keep thinking you'll just dig yourself down deeper and deeper and taking action will become more and more difficult."

Always seeing the downside

If you instinctively view every opportunity through a negative lens, you will wreck your own motivation.

Don't find faults everywhere, and problems where there are none. You can always uncover many reasons not to take a certain path. Instead, ask what might be good about a situation or how you can learn from it.

If you always focus on the downside, there'll never be an upside. You'll never get anywhere.

Constantly being on information overload

If you let too much stimuli float into your mind, you won't be able to focus.

Shut out distractions, and be more selective in what you let into your mind.

"It is strange how much you can get done when you aren't interrupted every fifth minute or have the opportunity to procrastinate by checking your inbox or Facebook," he notes.