What is success?

Have you ever given any thought to what it means to be successful? A news article I was reading last week prompted me to think on this, and I find myself returning to this subject when I get some quiet time to myself.

I have a feeling that ten different people would have ten different definitions of success. I also have a feeling that a majority of those ten might change their definition, if given enough time to think about what success really means to them.

I’ve been thinking of this from a few different perspectives; from my own, of course, as an individual with hopes and dreams, but also from the perspective of a father, and what sort of success I want for my kids.

My first thought was that success meant the ability to provide for oneself, and be independent. I have a feeling that many folks would agree with that definition, but it falls short of addressing any type of success outside of career/job/financial concerns. It is entirely possible to fulfill that definition and be completely miserable. How can that mean “being successful”?

Does success equate to happiness? Hmmm. For me, this one doesn’t add up either. What if someone is happy, but unemployed, homeless, friendless, etc? They’d be happy, but hardly successful.

I suppose this is all very subjective, but what I’ve come up with is this: success, or “being successful”, means living YOUR life. Not pretending to be something you aren’t, not living a life you think others expect you to live, but living YOUR life. In my book, if you can do that, you’re a success. That’s what I strive for, and that’s what I wish for my children. If your definition doesn’t line up with mine, that’s ok – I’d love to know your thoughts.

Thanks for reading.

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