In December of 2009, I decided to create my very own definition of success. A basic definition of success is “an accomplishment of an aim or purpose”, which means everyone has achieved some form/level of success in their life. I didn’t know what my purpose was at that time, but I knew for certain that I didn’t necessarily “feel successful”. I began to brainstorm about what success meant to me and what I would need to do to achieve it. After all, success is different depending on what your aim and/or purpose is. I’d lived most of my life allowing others to define success for me; educators, family members, entertainers, athletes and colleagues. I decided almost 2.5 years ago what I wanted and each day of my life is now spent being successful. If you are having those negative feelings that I once had about success, I would suggest the following:
- · Create your own definition of success. Take a few moments to figure out what you want to accomplish, list what really matters to you and remind yourself everyday that those things make you successful. Your definition doesn’t need to meet anyone else’s standard or approval. The only person who has any say about this definition is you!
- · Retrain your brain. For every negative thought, replace it with the opposite. The words “I can’t” eliminate your power; the words “I am” will restore your power.
- · Write the vision. Make a list of goals that you want to accomplish. Of course this list can contain things you’ve always wanted to do, places you’ve always wanted to visit, etc but it should align with the definition that you’ve created for success.
- · Take action. Creating a definition and making a list will not get you any closer to achieving success if you decide to do nothing! At some point, you have to press past fear, which you can actually work through, and work towards being successful. The thing to learn about fear is that you’ve convinced yourself that a certain situation will have a negative outcome. When you retrain your brain, you replace that negative outcome with a positive one.
- · Just ask! You may need to partner with others to achieve your goals and once you work past your fears, you’ll learn that asking for what you want will get you one step closer to success. When you ask for something, there is a chance that you will get what you want and there is a chance that you won’t. Don’t give yourself permission to eliminate the possibility by convincing yourself that you won’t hear “yes”. Remember, there is a 50/50 chance that you will.
It doesn’t matter if your 23 or 53, you can be successful. Success isn’t bound by race, culture, age, demographic or gender. The only person who can stop you from achieving your dreams, from being successful is you. Successful people work hard; they sacrifice; they are determined; they understand that failure isn’t an option; they set goals, discipline themselves and achieve them. You have the power to become successful, the question is: how bad do you want it?