The True Meaning of Success

How much energy do you devote toward being successful and attaining your goals? Many people spend lots of energy wanting to be successful but not evaluating what true success means for them. I am always amazed at how hard my clients work at things that don’t make them feel good about themselves and their efforts, yet they claim to want success to have successful lives.

Success is not about what kind of car you drive or what kind of home you own. If success were defined by the kind of car we drive we become as plastic as the bumper on that car. Or, if we measure success based on income and the economy takes a dive, what does that say about us? I am suggesting that success should involve something meaningful. Consequently the first question I ask is, “What do you enjoy doing that makes you feel good about you and brings about a feeling of gratitude?” As a Personal Life Coach, I approach client’s goals with a definite belief that whatever work we do together will require that they work from a character-based lifestyle. I help people learn how to be successful by making a positive difference in their lives and in this world. I encourage clients to look at goal-setting and success in greater terms than power, prosperity and prestige. I ask them to develop goals that will include attending to their families and communities. Success is about making a positive difference that encourages others to “pay it forward”.

Have you seen the movie “Pay It Forward”? It’s based on the story of a young boy who is given the assignment to create an idea that will not only have a positive impact on three other human beings, but will also have a domino effect upon them. Each benefactor is expected to do something positive for someone else. If the chain goes unbroken, one could surmise that eventually all mankind would be affected. A human pyramid would exist where everyone would be sharing random acts of kindness. It’s an exemplary movie depicting people at their best and at their worst.

As you are developing your goals and mission statements, make sure it attends to other people on a greater level. The formula for success should include the following:
• A desire to better yourself and others. You need to make a contribution that has a “pay it forward” quality.
• A utilization of your character strengths. Think about your positive personality strengths and use them daily.
• Your passion. You need to enjoy yourself and model being happy.
• Self-discipline. There is always hard work in goal-setting. Remember, you control your own destiny and that destiny requires a lot of work.
• Persistence. It’s important for you to work toward your goals daily.
• Humility. Truly successful people rely on help from a support network, knowing they could not do it by themselves. They stay focused on how others have helped them. Often times, this means focusing on a greater power.
• Gratitude. Being positive, giving thanks and acknowledging what is good in life. It’s called having the attitude of gratitude. It’s no accident that the words resemble each other.

Successful living impacts others. Does your formula include empowering others as well as yourself? Write down what you want to do in your life and what your vision for success is. Make that statement daily and send me a copy so I can include it on the Web site.

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