Archive for May, 2014

What Does SUCCESS Look Like To You?

The other day I was speaking with a friend about his business and what success would mean to him. Jack is motivated by material possessions – fancy cars, nice homes, country club membership and so on. In his mind you judge your success against physical criteria.

The problem with defining success in terms of what others have achieved is that often you will never be satisfied. You buy a Ferrari because someone you consider successful has one, but then you realize another friend owns a Gulfstream jet so you have to adjust your definition to now include a Gulfstream. We read about people who have accumulated all the possessions anyone could possibly want, yet they are miserable. Outwardly they appear successful, but in reality they are unhappy.

Most of us strive for success but are unclear on what success looks like. It’s hard to set a goal of being successful without having a clear understanding of what success means.

I believe that success isn’t externally validated but is rather a reflection of our values, defined in part as what we think is important. I don’t consider a person who owns a big house that was gained through deceit as being successful. Financial independence is an ingredient in my recipe of success, right along with a life in balance, family and friends, health, personal development, and enjoyment. Personal development means a constant never ending commitment to improving your mind and physical skills…striving to be better today than you were yesterday.

John Maxwell, noted leadership pundit, offers this definition:

“Success is…

  knowing your purpose in life,

  growing to reach your maximum potential, and

  sowing seeds that benefit others”

 According to this definition success is a journey and not a destination. By thinking of success as a journey you eliminate point in time comparisons with what others have achieved. Each one of us is on a different journey and therefore success looks different for each of us.

Lastly, success is difficult to achieve if you aren’t deeply passionate about, and your best at, whatever you want to achieve.

How do you define success? How will you know when you are successful? Give it some thought and let me know your definition.

I wish you great success in your pursuit of life.

Jeff Lovejoy


May 21, 2014 at 6:04 am Leave a comment