What is success?
Over the years, I have heard very interesting answers to this question. The common recurring answers I get relate either to financial, or the ego. By that I mean, most people equate being successful as making a million dollars, or being a celebrity, or running a business empire, or achieving a certain position in their company.
If that is true, then the happiest people on the planet would be those with lots of money.
There’s just a problem with that. We all know of at least one person who is in the ‘rich’ category but aren’t really in the ‘happy’ category. Maybe that’s because you don’t know someone who’s really rich. Well, how about those who are really, really rich?
Those are pretty extreme examples but they illustrate the point – neither riches nor celebrity status makes one a success.
I’m sure you can get even more examples if you do a google search, but this post is not about the wild and wicked ways of the rich. If you want to know more of that, you can do your own research.
You are on a quest to be successful.
WHY do you want to be successful?
What most people take for success is only a situation.
There is no guaranteed permanence to a situation – the fates are fickle, and no man or woman has that inalienable right to stake a claim to fame or fortune forever.
So, what is success?
Paul Myers defined success as, “Living your life the way YOU want to live”.
That’s pretty darn good. It’s an easy measure to check your ‘success pulse’. Are you living your life the way you want to live? Are you happy in your current situation?
You are successful when you are happy. Not the fleeting happiness of temporary achievements (that’s important, too). But the state of mind of being contented. In his instructional letter to Timothy, Paul says, “godliness with contentment is great gain.” This message is profound. To put in very simply,
Core values + Attitude = Success.
Nothing there about a million dollars, or being a celebrity. Success is not the exclusive playground of the rich or famous. It is equally accessible to the poor as much as to the rich. And it explains why so many people don’t feel they are successful. It’s the second part of the equation – your attitude.
So am I successful?
I have a loving family, have a good circle of real friends, enjoy going online to do battles with villians and monsters, enjoy my food, enjoy helping people, playing with the latest gadget, staying abreast with leading edge technology, constantly trying out new things, having fun along the way.
I don’t enjoy travelling, but my wife does. So we do travel a bit. That’s a little wrinkle on my perfect success, but I can live with that 🙂
Could I have been richer? Definitely. But I wouldn’t be successful.