In my last post I asked the question: What does success mean to you and what will you do to get it? I talked about the fact success of course means different things to different people. For some monetary success is paramount, whilst for others it can change weekly according to what makes them happy at any given time.
You have to know what success means to you before you can set out to pursue it. Once you have some clarity around what will truly make you happy you are in the perfect position to evaluate why it will make you happy. This almost always comes back to your values.
The desire to attain success of any sort stems from a place of feeling lack in our current situation, be that a lack of security, lack of money even a lack of love. It could also be that while we would be happy with our current situation if just looking our for ourselves, our responsibility for those around us pushes us to want to strive for more.
It’s important to know what we are hoping to attain by achieving success and why. Firstly it helps us understand our motivation behind the actions we want to take to achieve the result and lets us know if the ‘success’ we are going after really is for us. If the motivation behind earning X sum of money in our business is wanting to purchase a bigger family home, we could argue that that is a more than reasonable end goal. Although it would be to benefit our family, as family is high on the list of values we are likely to feel fulfilled after earning that sum of money.
What if the price for this success is too high? What if growing your business comes at the cost of spending time with your family? What if it adversely affects your health? Would it still be success when you got there?
Sure we could argue that short term pain for long term gain is a fair trade-off but would it be worth it if everyone ended up unhappy in the process?
If the scenario was slightly different and the motivation behind earning X amount of money was simply so we would no longer feel inadequate about ourselves or an aspect of our lives we may find that we lack the motivation to keep going and even if we do reach the destination the sense of achievement we expect to feel may be lacking. It may be that our time would be better spent working through the issues we have with self-esteem or another area in our lives.
In some instances throughout lives, our personal success criteria may be based on what others deemed as success. If you're a mum in business how many times have you felt a twinge of inadequacy because you're not making 6-figures like X,Y,Z coach, jeweller, digital marker? Sometimes we don't recognise when our success barometer is measuring the temperature outside. When we are on the right path for us success feels good - even when it's taking us longer than everyone else.
As Dale Carnegie quite rightly said, “Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get!” Only you can decide whether what you want is what will actually make you happy.
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