Redefining Success

Happy Monday peeps! How has the first half of your day been so far?

The dictionary defines success as ‘the accomplishment of an aim or purpose’, which seems straight forward enough to me. So why do we get so mixed up about it?

See I’ve always seen success as that thing I will get once I moved countries, got married, bought a flat, finished my postgraduate and made lots and lots of money. Funny when I did most of them I didn’t feel successful, especially when the qualification didn’t bring me the fulfillment I was looking for. Go figure! The things didn’t bring me joy but a sense of OMG! I need to work really, really hard to keep from losing it, which is really stressful.

See I got caught up in the what I think success ‘should look like’ game instead of, what success really means to me. Now I haven’t figured it all out but I thought I would share what I know, like I know, like I know 😉

smile with dog www.majeang.com

  1. The trappings of success i.e. shoes, bags, big homes and designer clothing are nice to own, they just aren’t nice when they own you. In other words, if you’re working your butt off in a job that makes you miserable to have a particular lifestyle, that isn’t success. That is torture because you won’t be able to enjoy any of it. Trust me if I was given a Chanel bag or a Burberry trench coat, best believe I will say thank you and wear it. What I won’t do is let it define me as a person.
  2. After awhile the things that gave you the feelings of success and happiness, will fade and you will soon be looking for the next thing to make you feel like a success. When I say things, what I’m really saying is material stuff. A bit like what Bob Marley said ‘if it takes money to be happy, your search will never end’.
  3. What makes me feel successful will be different from what makes JK Rowling feel successful. Perhaps success for her is knowing that she no longer has to worry about providing for her family financially. For me it’s knowing that I did my best with a post and it helped someone (hopefully!). For someone suffering from anxiety, success is making it through the day without having a panic attack.
  4. Finally, working in a job that was only meant to be a pit stop and trying to make it into a fixture, because it looks good, will make you have regret. Believe you me I did this for a number of years. Now I’ve taken the leap of leaving my 9 to 5 gig, minus the safety net of another job, which is scarily exciting, to pursue content creation. Now, I get to create the kind of career that I define as successful and that is priceless. Don’t get me wrong  I learned a lot from my previous job but, now in my 30’s I’m thinking I would have been here a lot sooner had I not been caught up in the things or fearful. But you live and you learn.

smiling www.majeang.com

All in all, you get to define what success is for you. Not the media, your parents, your boss or that celebrity you admire. We can get inspiration from other people most certainly, but it shouldn’t be a case of wanting what they have because that made them successful. No siree! Choose what you desire and make up your own definition of success.

Let me know in the comments what your definition of success is.

Until next time, be well

x

photography by Lisa

18 thoughts on “Redefining Success

  1. So well written. I had the same mindset when it came to defining the word success and it took me a long time to figure out that success doesn’t mean moving up on the corporate ladder or the amount of money I make. Loved this post.

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  2. I really related to this post, especially in terms of how a definition of success can change over time. I know in my twenties, my definition of success was to be on a major record label and touring constantly. Since then, I’ve done the record label thing, and it didn’t bring me the happiness or the success I thought it would, and my definition of success went through quite a few changes, including getting engaged, settling down, leaving my label, and getting back into sewing and garment construction in a big way (my other passion). Nowadays in my mid thirties, my definition of success is to move out of the city with my fiancé and have a light-filled, plant-filled workroom where I can sit with a cup of matcha and just create clothing, play piano, and work on my own terms 🙂 ♡

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  3. Love the realisations that you’ve made regarding success. Sometimes I think we need to go through the “normal” route to appreciate what success really does mean to us!

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  4. I love your honesty! Too many people have a skewed vision of success. I suppose that’s because of clever advertising!

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  5. I love this post! Especially the part where you say that your image of success is different from J.K. Rowling’s! This is so true!! We don’t all need to be like Beyoncé! Just be yourself! And success will come naturally!
    Thanks for sharing this pearl of a blog post!

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  6. My definition of success is being able to help others achieve their personal goals and to leave my 9-5 job to grow my businesses. I will know I have reached that level of success when I am able to travel and learn about other cultures. I enjoyed reading your post and you have put my plans into perspective. Thanks so much for sharing!

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