Success is one of those concepts or terms whose definition will vary slightly from individual to individual. In many ways, like beauty, it is in the eyes of the beholder.
A working definition alludes to the achievement of a desired result, the completion of an intended goal, or the attainment of a certain item, state, or status. For some, success can be measured internally, through intangible feelings of satisfaction, value and fulfillment, while for others, it is measured by the accumulation or acquisition of tangible or external rewards.
Use this quick-start guide to begin cultivating your own success:
S – Start where you are. There is no better place to start than at the beginning. For each of us, that beginning is right now. You cannot control the past, but you can make decisions from this point forward to positively impact your future.
U – Understand that you will encounter obstacles and challenges along the way. Change is not always easy; in fact, it is often difficult in the beginning. As you make adjustments to your thinking and behaviors, old patterns often threaten to sabotage good intentions. By being open to the challenges that may appear, you are better able to address them and work through them, instead of letting them halt you in your tracks.
C – Create a plan. If you do not know where you are going, you will never get there. Plans may change and new alternatives may appear unexpectedly, but having a basic plan to follow gives structure and focus to your efforts, aligning your energy toward your intended outcome.
C – Celebrate small victories and milestones along the way. Working toward success may sometimes feel like a means to an end, but it is important to recognize that there isn’t just one golden carrot at the end of the road. There are many carrots of various types and sizes along the way. By celebrating each and every one, you acknowledge your strengths and capabilities, bolstering confidence and solidifying your belief in your ability to achieve your ultimate goals.
E – Evaluate your course periodically, monitoring progress and checking in to ensure that what you originally desired still holds power for you. People change. As you work toward your goals, you will want to monitor how you are doing, see if you need to tweak your process, and assess whether your priorities and goals have remained the same over time. Sometimes you will need to shift course. This is fine, as long as you are maintaining momentum in a direction that best serves you in a holistic way.
S – See yourself attaining success. Continuously visualize what you want. Make it real in your mind, so that it can become real in your daily life. Visualizing your own success makes it more believable to your inner self and helps your mind set up structures that will support your ability to do what you have set out to accomplish. You can only achieve that which you believe is possible.
S – Support yourself with resources that align with your intended outcome (friends, family, colleagues, finances, time, activities, positive thoughts and attitude, etc.). Recruit those who are close, trustworthy, and positive influences in your life to share in your experiences. Use them as a sounding board, to gain constructive feedback, and to stay grounded. Find ways to arrange all parts of your life to support your plan and process. Are you giving yourself the time, space, and energy you need to properly execute your plan? Are you supportive of yourself, allowing yourself to fully reap the fruits of your labors?
1) What is your own personal definition of “success”?
2) Visualize yourself looking back on your life from your 100th birthday party. What has made your life a success? What are you most proud of? What has been most important? What have you achieved?
3) What steps will you need to take to accomplish these things between now and your 100th birthday?
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