If I asked you the question – “How successful are you right now?” What would your answer be?
Are you still on the journey to being successful, or have you already achieved that victory?
If you’re not quite there yet and you’re looking for a way to be truly successful, a great place to start is to ask yourself this question –
“What does success look like for you?”
And I must stress the “you” part of that sentence because you are the only person who can answer that question for yourself.
Society tells us that success can only be achieved by obtaining material possessions, winning competitions, earning vast amounts of money, or becoming famous for our achievements, but is that really true?
Just because someone decided one day that fame and fortune is the key to success, does that really make it so?
The answer is no.
Because ‘success’ is merely a perception of achievement. It is a feeling.
The definition of success is – “the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.”
So who decides what that aim or purpose is?
The answer is you do.
Only you can decide what success looks and feels like for you.
So again I ask you the question – “What does success look like for you?”
Because this is the only question that should really matter to you in this situation.
When I started working for myself a few years ago I started feeling like a failure after a while when I hadn’t earned the amount of money I thought I ‘should’ or ‘could’ in my area of expertise. And it was then that I started to wonder – why am I feeling like a failure? Why do I think I’ve failed? I’m doing what I love while helping hundreds, even thousands of people communicate more effectively and get along better with the people in their lives yet I’m concerned that I haven’t made my millions yet?
I then started to think about how I had let other people determine my level of success and as a result I was left feeling ashamed and defeated when I didn’t need to be.
I decided right there and then that actually money has never been a driver for me, it’s not my measure of success and never will be. To me my success is measured on how many people I can help in real ways and the difference I can make in people’s lives.
So right now I’m feeling extremely successful – even though my bank account might not reflect that feeling.
But I heard an interesting perspective regarding monetary value and happiness on the ‘Happy’ documentary (definitely worth a watch)…
People who say money can’t buy you happiness are neither right nor wrong. Money can buy you out of poverty, it can give you a roof over your head, food on your plate and other basic human needs.
However, once you have covered your basic survival needs, money can’t do much for you after that.
The difference in happiness levels between someone who earns $500 a year and $50,000 a year is huge. But the difference in happiness levels between someone who earns $50,000 a year and $500,000 a year is not that much.
That’s because if you associate happiness with material possessions then the amount of happiness you feel is limited and often fleeting. When that possession is gone, out of date or even broken, then so is your happiness.
So in order to be truly successful you must first ask yourself the question – “What does success look like for me?” and get specific.
If success to you is feeling healthy – then get specific about that. How will you look and feel when you’re healthy? Is it about weight loss or gain, feeling less tired, not getting sick as often etc. What is the ideal outcome for you?
That way when you take action to achieve this success, you’ll know when you’ve reached your goal because you know what it looked like in the first place.
Want some help becoming more successful at what you do? Send me a message below to find out more about our personal development coaching.
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