How does the Self Determination help in success?

Self-determination is a combination of skills, knowledge, and beliefs that enable a person to engage in goal-directed, self-regulated, autonomous behavior. An understanding of one's strengths and limitations together with a belief in oneself as capable and effective are essential to self-determination. When acting on the basis of these skills and attitudes, individuals have greater ability to take control of their lives and assume the role of successful adults.

Gaining control over your life involves learning and then successfully applying a number of self-determination skills, such as goal-setting, understanding your abilities and disabilities, problem-solving, and self-advocacy. The personal process of learning, using, and self-evaluating these skills in a variety of settings is at the heart of self-determination.
We have gathered the following advice synthesized from hundreds of responses of the successful young people and adults with disabilities who contributed to the following topics:

Set personal, academic, and career goals. Keep your expectations high.
Below, successful young people and adults share their views about how they set goals and maintain high expectations:

• A combination of people and events has helped me maintain high standards. This all started during the summer months when my mother and neighbor friend pushed me to improve my academic skills. At the time, it wasn't high standards that I was working for, but rather escaping embarrassment. For me, I wanted no one to know I had a disability and would have done most anything to hide it. Summer study sessions provided a stepping stone for future success in high school and college. Success builds upon itself. This was my start to expecting to do well in school.
• I'm just stubborn and I refuse to lower my expectations. (college student with a mobility and orthopedic impairment)
• My parents helped me maintain high expectations for myself. They taught me never to say "I can't" at anything I try. (high school student with cerebral palsy)
• My mobility teacher made me confident in my ability to learn, which has helped me maintain high expectations. (college student who is blind)
• My parents expected me to do as well as other students without disabilities, if not better. My parents actively sought help for my hearing impairment in the forms of speech therapists, audiologists, and teachers to make sure that I had an equal chance in public schools. Before choosing a new house, my parents did a lot of research on the local schools. (college student who is deaf)
• My brother and sister had one single expectation that determined my success: I was not treated differently in any way because I could not see. (computer scientist who is blind)
• I am still in the process of learning to stretch but I start by identifying what I can already do, what I am comfortable doing and feel good about. Then I say to myself (sometimes in writing) I can do more. I can do better, what is it BEYOND what I already can do that I want to be able to do? Then I write down goals or ideas and make efforts to stretch myself. (adult with hearing and mobility impairments)
• Very early on, I became the stubborn guy I am today. "Can't" wasn't in my vocabulary, which, of course, was helped by a set of parents who offered me opportunities to do most of the things everyone else did and encouraged me to set very high standards. By now, I do realize that everyone has a path in life that their unique set of talents and lack thereof gives them. I will never be mistaken for an athlete. However, knowing what talents I do have, I press myself to be the best historian, philosopher, and writer that I can be. (college student with a mobility impairment)
• I set personal, academic, and career goals by knowing where my limits are and working around them. If someone says I can't do something, and I haven't tried it before, that just makes me more determined to prove that someone wrong. If I fail, at least I tried. That's what counts. (college student with mobility impairments)
• One of the main reasons people do not set high expectations is fear of failure….; Start by having achievable goals that are not long-term. Develop week long, achievable goals that lead to success. Build on each success and make each goal a little higher. Think of it as a metaphorical high jump. You cannot set the bar too high in the beginning or you just set yourself up for failure. (adult with hearing and mobility impairments)