Examples abound of people who broke the rules of society to become successful leaders. Sir Richard Branson once said, “I never learned the rules in the first place,” when he broke all the rules of business to set up his “Virgin Group.”

In fact, most successful entrepreneurs haven’t become the huge successes they are from following rules. They used the common sense approach rather than rules that would have kept them from thinking outside the box.

If you’re starting a business or have a great idea you want to get out to the population, ask yourself which rules are holding you back and how you can show your uniqueness.

Then, ask yourself how you can break these rules to get you to where you want to be as a business entrepreneur and leader of society. Never take the law-breaking or unethical approach to breaking rules, but do analyze the rules and make a plan about how you can break them to your own advantage.

You’ve likely heard the old rule, “If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.” This may work on some things, but in certain situations, this rule begs to be broken. You can always strive to make something better – even if it isn’t broken.

Thinking outside the box requires you to look at things that aren’t really “broken” and brainstorm about how you can make it work better, more efficiently and to gain more profit.

Spending more time in the office or at work is another rule that can be counterproductive for what you really want to accomplish. The trick is to accomplish your work in a smarter way than a more time-consuming way.

Today’s technology makes it possible for you to do just that. Working smarter rather than longer hours allows your brain to function on another level – you might come up with your best idea while planting flowers in the garden or preparing a gourmet meal.

Step away from work periodically – regroup and you’ll be a much better worker and more creative person. Take time to assess and reassess your dreams and goals and be sure they’re what you really want. Then, break some rules to get it.