True Meaning Of Success
From STAGE 6: HAPPINESS

If you believe that the true meaning of success is defined only by wealth and possessions  – cars , houses or fame  – any other definition can seem like something to comfort yourself with -  a way of trying to convince yourself that you are not a failure.

Another comfort might be to say to yourself “I didn’t get the breaks” in the right circumstances I could have had all the trappings of success.

It’s also possible to console yourself with the,often mistaken, belief that many people with fame and wealth are not happy.

It is easy to see how we can become convinced that the only definition of success is having many possessions and large amounts of money. For years we have been  "programmed" with messages that carry only that single definition of success - the car, the house, the money.

Given all this “programming” even brainwashing, it is no wonder that we tend to see success in such a limited way.

So is it possible to look for another definition of success that doesn’t have to exclude possessions and wealth but is also more personal to each of us? 

The answer to this is yes, but we must do something we are not normally used to doing – discovering what is good in us and the enormous potential for success we each possess. 

Discovering our potential for success.

"Look inside to find your true potential".

When I first read words like that I could stare at them for some time but still come up with a blank. I knew what each word meant but the sentence carried a meaning that didn’t really connect with me.

Looking inside seemed like something odd - how could it be done and how could I find potential or anything else in there?

What difference could doing this possibly make to my life anyway?

I did find that “looking inside” starts by relaxing and trying to be quiet for a while most days.

Doing this helped me break some old habits and gave me some time to read more about the true meaning of success, failure and potential.

In reading I came across some very interesting ideas and quotes about the subject – this is one that stuck in my mind –

“The question to ask is not whether you are a success or a failure, but whether you are a learner or a non-learner”

Benjamin Barber

This helped me see that making mistakes is not so much about failure but is part of learning.

We know about the successes of many famous people but behind these successes more often than not they have experienced many “failures”.

But these successful people are also learners and believe in their own potential.

So my “looking inside“ did bring me to realize certain things about the true meaning of success –

Success does not have the same definition for all of us.

Having wealth and fame is only one definition of success but for many it can also be a true definition. 

What we usually see as our “failures” really are stepping stones to success -  but only if we are “learners”.

Attaining success can mean having the courage to change your life based on what you have learned.

I also realized that trying to attain the “wealthy” definition of success by pushing harder and harder at a job or an activity that somehow you know is not really “you” almost certainly will lessen your chances of getting there.

This statement made that thought very clear to me –

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.

Albert Einstein

Different results

Defining your own meaning of success is a necessary challenge if you judge yourself only against the “wealth and possessions” definition.

There will always be someone with more wealth and possessions.

But there will be nobody with more of what is your own very personal definition of success.

Having wealth and possessions could be your legitimate definition and if you can use happiness and the idea of having “enough” to judge your success it will not bother you that someone else has more.

Different results can also be achieved by setting goals for yourself, however, care should be taken here to make sure you are mindful enough to avoid setting goals that are really about doing the same thing over and over.

Feeling you are successful can be one of the most satisfying feelings you can give yourself.

If you know, by your own definition, that you are successful and you also know that your own definition is all that really matters to you; you may well have found the true meaning of success.

True Meaning Of Success > How To Change Your Life

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