What is the True Definition of Success? For most people, the answer to this question appears obvious. For Most people Success is all about Fame, Wealth and Status. The reason it is their definition of success is that it is also the society’s definition of success so most people don’t even question this definition. In fact the Webster’s Dictionary goes on to define success as the attainment of Wealth, Respect or Fame
In most people’s eyes you are successful only if you have loads of cash, nice cars, a big house or multiple houses and possessions associated with a luxurious lifestyle. However, if all you follow is this definition and are willing to sacrifice everything for it, even your basic happiness, then you maybe successful at earning money but not successful at living a good life. Here are 7 key things that truly define success.
Making an Income You are Happy With
While only defining success though money is stupid, the fact is we all need enough money to provide a comfortable living for ourselves. Now what is defined as comfortable is totally up to you. The important thing is you should be happy with whatever you are making. Happiness is the key to success.
When I made my movie Carve Your Destiny I interviewed some of the most famous achievers for it. Deepak Puri, the multi-millionaire chairman of Moser Baer specifically stated. “Success is to the degree you desire. Even if a man makes a limited income he is happy with and has achieved all the goals that he wants, I believe he is successful. I personally think am not successful to this day because I still have many goals to achieve.”
A Lack of Jealousy
A lot of people say they are happy or content with whatever they have achieved in life. They say they are successful because they are happy, but the moment they see others achieving more than them, they get jealous.
It’s not that everyone needs to be at the peak of the mountain. Some have a desire to climb small mountains and others want to scale the Everest. If you are happy with it, great but if seeing a friend, an acquaintance or even an enemy achieve great heights triggers jealousy, it means you are not content, you are complacent. You are making contentment as an excuse to stay complacent and not achieve your goals.
If you are jealous of somebody else that’s the time you need to ask yourself why am I complacent and what can I do to change my situation. Then go achieve the goals you desire until a point comes that you no longer care if anyone else rises higher or not, because you know you have achieved everything you wanted in life. That’s the true definition of success.
Being In Charge Of Your Life
The feeling of having control over your destiny is an amazing feeling as compared to being told what to do at every point of your life.
Most people live lives where they are dictated every moment by others what to do. When you are young, you have no choice. You will be under the control of your parents and teachers. But when you are an adult you have a choice.
If you love your job and are given enough independence in it to pursue what you want happily and make a good living, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a job, in fact this situation would be ideal for many. However, in many cases this is far from the truth.
If you are living a life where your boss screams at you everyday, deal with extreme negativity with your colleagues and break your back working hard everyday to make someone else rich are you really successful even if you make money as a result of your miserable life? I think not. Think about starting a business or doing something on your own.
If you were born in a family where your daddy had a net worth of $950 million, I wouldn’t call you a success just because you ended up having a net worth of $1 billion.
On the other hand if you were born in an extremely poor family, had to endure abuse, did not get proper education, faced numerous personal tragedies, faced rejection at every stage and yet you overcome all those immense challenges to now reaching a position where you are employed in a respectable job or running a successful small business, in reality you are much much much more successful than the guy who inherited a billion dollars. This is the true definition of success.
Success is not about what is handed down to you on a platter, it is about what you are able to create out of almost nothing despite facing pain, hardship, rejection and despair at every corner. It is not defined by what you achieve in life, but the obstacles you overcame to achieve what you finally did.
Having a Great Family and good health
If you don’t have support from your family or if things are always combative, you can have a big house, a big car and a big bank balance and you will still be miserable. In fact this is indeed the case in many families that are actually extremely well off financially.
People are after the money but ignore the relationships. As a consequence they suffer. They don’t spend time with their parents, their spouses hate them and their children could care less. The divorce rates are going up especially in high income groups and relationships between children and their parents are getting worse. What’s the point of this kind of success?
Invest your time in relationships if you want to have a truly successful life. You cannot change a person completely but often times the way they behave with you is a reflection of how you behave with them
Doing What Matters To You The Most
Each one of us has something that we truly love doing or are extremely passionate about. Even if you have not discovered it yet, chances are there is something or the other that you are so tremendously good at and would enjoy doing that so much that it could become the mission of your life. Chances are there is something that once discovered and pursued would give you tremendous happiness and fulfillment in life. Working on it would be so effortless that it almost not seem like work. And if you can figure out how to make money while doing it, well that is the true definition of success.
However, most people are not doing what matters to them the most or pursuing their passion. For some reason, it is believed that most people have no idea what they are passionate about or what matters to them. Actually, this is far from the truth. Most people have at least SOME idea about what they are passionate about and what really matters to them. The problem is that they lack the courage to pursue it or give up too soon. When you do what truly matters to you, the journey won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
However, there is a strategy to following your passion smartly. Jumping in emotionally won’t cut it. Read about how to follow your passion the smart way.
Building a Legacy You are Proud Of
Everybody wants to be remembered in some way or the other. Most people want to be remembered for good things. This is what separates us from animals who don’t even think of the future or couldn’t care less. People on the other hand care about the world thinks of them, and if taken in a positive way, this would motivate you to build a legacy you are proud of.
Now a legacy does not mean having monuments built in your name. That’s for the world to decide not you. Honestly you shouldn’t even care. You should focus on doing the things that matter to you and help make the world around a better place. It does not have to be on a mass scale, it can be in your own little way. But truly what defines success is when you make the world a better place so that when you go, people say “he was a good man who had an unbelievably positive impact on my life.”
Being a person who only cared about wealth and status and ran after money without genuinely impacting people’s lives is will leave behind a worthless legacy. If you run after materialistic success, you die when you die. But when you focus on helping the world, you continue to live on in the minds and the hearts of people you impacted. Now that is the true definition of success.