Defining Success A Personal View

Perhaps before I wrote yesterdays posting about success I should have spent a little time talking about what is success, can it be defined?  I came from a family where if you didn’t go to Harvard and then become a wealthy doctor you were a failure.  Ha, then you could start to define ‘wealthy’ but thats another story.  So I was brought up to think that not only was making a lot of money imperative for success, so was how you made it.  What kind of occupation you had.  If you were just making a lot of money  that wasn’t success.  As you can see I grew up with an insurmountable amount of pressure.  I took the other route, didn’t go to Harvard, didn’t become a doctor, but before being unemployed I always did well for myself.  Its ironic over the years how the views of my parents, now just my mother, have changed.  My parents grew up in an era when doctors were rich; my father did quite well but today if you want to be rich you don’t become a doctor.  I guess today’s version of success could  be the investment banker that makes 8 figures and buys a Lamborghini or penthouse with their year end bonus.

To me none of that is success, its not what I want and not what I strive for.  To me success has more to do with piece of mind, how you view yourself and how you view the world.  Success is also having friends and family and a husband that care about you for you. Sometimes a nice text at the right moment is better than a new Rolex.  As for career success that is something I haven’t found yet, as I mentioned in the last post in greater detail.  But when that does happen, my finding my career voice, its not going to be about just money and occupation.  I have realized that my parents views were incorrect about success and that I am not unsuccessful because I chose not to follow them.  My definition of success today is having inner peace and doing something that you really enjoy doing, being able to make a ‘comfortable’ living, having a loving family and making a difference.

In the end though I think everyone has their own definition of success, but make sure its your definition and that you aren’t trying to live up to someone else’s expectations.

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3 thoughts on “Defining Success A Personal View

  1. Great posting! It took me a while to understand the difference between inner and outer success, you write about it so well. I liked your previous post about having an inner knowledge that you will do well. From what I have been reading you will!

  2. Perhaps it can be summed up by saying success–as in beauty–is in the eye of the beholder. I would say your parents weren’t necessarily wrong, they just had their own view of success. Their opinion of success is what our educational system is designed by, which also equates with a person’s “status” on the social hierarchy of life. There is so much creativity out there in the minds of our youth, but our educational system stifles it and teaches rote memorization instead.

    I wonder if your parents viewed professional athletes as being successful? Nice piece here about following one’s heart/soul path as opposed to that which is “expected.” I’m glad you’re heading along the path towards that which motivates your heart and soul rather than following the expected, more traveled path. Otherwise we might be denied these thought provoking words o’ wisdom from thy inner and outer reflections.

  3. Thanks so much for reading my post so closely and having such great insight and response. You are right about my parents not being wrong, their view of success was handed down to them from their parents. Not sure what they would have thought of a successful athlete, Jews aren’t all that athletic 🙂 I am trying to head on my path, I’ll tell you communicating on here and on twitter with nice people, like you, that want nothing but to exchange ideas and communicate and give tips to total strangers has probably been what I have enjoyed the most since college. So I am trying to find my path, thanks again for reading, following and giving such great insight!

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