Miley Cyrus has been turning heads and showing off her tremendous talent since her early teenage years. The daughter of “Achy Breaky Heart” singer Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley Cyrus has come into her own as an actress, singer, and songwriter. Whether it’s on television, at the movies, or on the radio, Cyrus has been a dominant force for over a decade.
You probably know her from Hannah Montana, the Disney Channel show in which she played the lead role of average teen by day, pop star by night. Or perhaps you’ve heard her hit songs on the radio; tunes like “Party in the USA,” “We Can’t Stop,” and “Wrecking Ball” have all charted extremely well around the world. You of course know her from her on stage antics and her inclination to dress a bit, shall we say, outlandishly in public. And more recently, she’s taken on more philanthropic projects, working with a number of organizations that help children and other groups.
At 24, she may still be young, but she’s already gone through several incarnations of her career, and she shows no signs of slowing down. Say what you want about Cyrus, but you have to admit one thing: she knows how to command the spotlight and evolve to stay current and stay relevant. If you’re hoping to achieve success — in any field, creative or otherwise — there’s a lot you can learn from Cyrus’s achievements. Here are the ten rules of success according to Miley Cyrus.
1. Listen to the lessons of your elders.
The celebrity of Cyrus’s country singer father may have faded quickly, and it may have since been enormously overshadowed by his daughter’s, Billy Ray Cyrus still has a lot of things to teach his daughter about about navigating her success. It has to be managed, as does the income, the work, and the people who suddenly want to cozy up to you. No matter what line of work you’re in, carefully heed the advice of those who have come before you. They have a lot to teach you, and those lessons can save you a lot of time and headaches down the road.
2. Surround yourself with great people.
Cyrus first worked with Disney, a worldwide hitmaker, on Hannah Montana, and throughout her singing career, she’s worked with great songwriters and music producers. When it came time to make music videos, she worked with video producers who had grand visions for turning her pop songs into short musical films. All of this collaboration contributed to her success; yes, she did catch several breaks along the way, but working with great people was a big factor. Similarly, you can’t be successful in a vacuum. You need others to work with you, and it’s important to allow their strengths to complement yours.
3. Don’t focus on the negative.
There’s so much negativity swirling around celebrities, especially around young female pop stars like Cyrus. While it’s true that she’s done more than a few things that have gotten people talking, and not always in a good way, she doesn’t let any ensuing negativity get to her. Her risque performance with Robin Thicke at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards is a great example of this. Fans and the press had a lot to say about it for the next several weeks, and most of it wasn’t flattering, but Cyrus let it all go and moved on. People will always talk, and you can’t really do anything to stop them, but you can move on, even if they don’t.
4. Good timing is crucial.
The same day as that now famous 2013 VMA performance took place, Cyrus released “Wrecking Ball,” a monster single that really showed off her range and strength as a vocalist. Sure, people were talking about the controversial stage show that took place, but it was hard to criticize her too much when she could belt out a mature and beautiful hit with grace. It was great timing on her part, and it’s a lesson that can be applied to any line of work. If you want to be successful and you want to take risks, have something irrefutably great in the hopper.
5. Be respectful of others.
Cyrus prides herself on being respectful of the press, even if the press isn’t always respectful of her. She’s also developed a reputation as someone who’s easy to get along with, and it’s something that’s helped her tremendously during the more challenging times in her career. No matter what field you’re in, if you’re respectful and easy to work with, you’ve got a leg up on your competitors who don’t display these characteristics.
6. Aim to inspire others, not to win awards.
Whether you’re working in a creative field or trying to develop the latest life saving technology, do what you do to inspire other people and make them excited. Sure, awards are great, but reaching people — really reaching their hearts — is what matters. Cyrus loves to perform and make music, and if she’s connecting with her audience, that’s what matters to her. Besides, if you do what you love and you always put forth your best work, the awards will come in due time.
7. Your image is dynamic, not static.
Nothing is set in stone, and everything can change. If you’ve kept up at all with Cyrus’s career, you know that this statement is especially true about her image. She went from the sweet, innocent Hannah Montana character to a young twenty-something rule breaker with different hair and revealing clothes. What’s her next move? It’s anyone’s guess. The point is that switching things up is not only possible, but it’s sometimes a viable way to get noticed.
8. Don’t get complacent — keep challenging yourself.
Cyrus had been around music her whole life, and playing Hannah Montana on the Disney show of the same name gave her a chance to show off her acting skills and her vocal abilities. But she didn’t want to keep singing other people’s songs for her entire career, and for her second solo album Breakout, she co-wrote eight of the 13 songs. It was a challenge, and one that she certainly didn’t need to take on, but she didn’t want to get complacent with singing songs that she didn’t write. Similarly, if you can challenge yourself, you improve your skills and improve your chances of achieving success.
9. Try new things.
Cyrus is a star of the screen, and she’s a well loved musician, but she’s not afraid to try something new. In fact, she’s lent her voice to several animation features, including 2008’s Bolt. For her — and really for anyone who hopes to become successful — it’s a great way to branch out and improve her skill set.
10. Find New Ways to Make Work Fun
Doing the same thing all the time can get boring, no matter what line of work you’re in. Cyrus always makes an effort to make it fun, whether it’s spicing up live performances or trying something unexpected on a recording. If you can make your work fun, you’ll certainly be happier, and you’ll enjoy your success more when you get it.