Society and the people around us put an emphasis on attaining success. Along with this emphasis, there is often a standard version of “success” we are meant to pursue. Often, it looks like a good job, a high paycheck, a family, and a position of leadership at work and in the community. And for some people, reaching those goals may bring satisfaction.
But others chase those goals and find that neither the journey nor achieving success brings a sense of fulfillment. Maybe their definition of success was defined by someone else, or it was a definition from a younger age. By taking the time to define what success means to you specifically, you can be sure you are investing your energy in goals that bring joy and fulfillment.
How to Define Your Success
There are as many definitions of success as there are people, and it takes conscious thought to find yours. It also helps to understand that your goals may change as you go through life, and that multiple goals of all sizes may make up your definition. Your definition of success may include:
- Attaining Wealth – People who consider wealth success may be thinking of anything from financial security and the ability to have shelter and food, to having an amount of money that enables them to purchase homes, cars, and other status items. Wealth that you can pass on to children or a cause may be another form of success.
- Achieving Leadership – Many people see themselves as leaders that push innovation, earn respect, or guide others. If you seek this form of success, it could be at work, within your community, in government, or as a thought leader in your field.
- Making an Impact – Some see a successful life as one that leaves a mark, whether that is a significant change recognized around the world or small actions that influence a neighbor.
- Being a Caregiver – Caring for family members, community members, students, or others in your life, and perhaps knowing you are loved in return, may be your definition of success.
- Living Life on Your Terms – Either as its own definition of success or part of a larger definition, understanding yourself and what makes you happy in the present – then living for yourself – can be a key element in making your life a fulfilling one.
Most importantly, how you define success should bring you fulfillment. Reaching these goals should make you feel satisfied and content. The best way to determine your definition of success is to examine what keeps you energized and passionate on a daily basis. This will help you define what is important to you and guarantees that you will enjoy both the process of striving for success and the result.