While scouring the airport newsstand the other day while waiting for our flight to arrive, a headline plastered on a very popular magazine caught my eye. The gist behind the article was that the people listed within were considered to be some of the most successful people in the world. But when I flipped through I realized that the thing they most had in common was that they were rich and could afford private jets, million dollar mansions, and all of the shoes their one hundred square foot closets could fit.
Of course, this got me to thinking about how I define success for myself, how the definition has changed over time, and if I haven´t met my goals for success whether they were even "meetable´ or whether they needed to be revised.
My idea of success has changed since I was in my twenties. Back then I thought success meant being rich, just as this article was implying. Luckily I´ve outgrown that thought and have revised my original idea of success. I think that making this revision is just a part of growing up and getting older. Now that I have children, my success is really part of what I want for them: a happy home life, good times, a lot of laughs.
Of course, I would also like to find success in my business as well. I´m not saying that I don´t want to make money; that would be silly. I do want to profit from my hard work, as I think most people do. But down the road, when I´m sixty or seventy and I´m sitting in my rocking chair on the front porch sipping a glass of Cabernet and thinking back on my life, it isn´t going to be that I had a huge amount of money in my bank account that made me successful; it will be that I had good times during the course of my life, whether I was flying around the country on vacations or spending quiet times at home with my husband and children, playing board games and drinking hot chocolate.
So my question to you today is to think about how you define success. And then, once you´ve thought about it, consider whether you have found success in your life. If you haven´t, and your goals are larger than life, revise them. If your goal is to become a billionaire, that´s great, and if you become a billionaire that is even better. But why hold onto goals that you may never be able to achieve?
Also, since our idea of success can change over time, so should our goals. Set smaller goals for yourself so that you will find some successes every so often. And once you meet those successes, set new goals. If you find it impossible to meet the goals you are setting, then you have set them too high. Break them down into smaller parts. Even if you do this, you don’t have to lose sight of the big goal. But at least if you have some smaller goals you can master, you won’t always feel as though you aren’t achieving what you hope to achieve.