Word-Of-the-Week #723: Success

June 14, 2018 by  

Success –achieving something desired, planned or attempted. 

How often have you felt you achieved success in your life? Do you give yourself credit for attempting something even if it doesn’t turn out the way you expected? Are you clear on what you want out of life?

This week Scott Mautz shares, Now That I’m 50, Here’s What I’ve Learned About Achieving Success That Escaped Me at 25. Hitting the big fifty requires reflection almost as a duty. So I focused mine on what I’ve learned about success since being half my current age.”

“I like writing about timeless lessons for success or key behaviors that lead to success. I’ve even written about famous failures that will inspire you to success. But nothing has spurned a more introspective look at achieving success than my turning a half-century old.  (Ugh, it hurts to even write those words). I now realize how much I’ve learned compared to when I was half my age.

So, this column is addressed to the 25-year-old me to whom I say, “Hey! Turn off your Sony Walkman and shift your attention from the Counting Crows to this success advice!”

  1. You own your career.

When I joined a big company shortly after turning 25, I believed that the Great Career Planner in the sky would simply move me from job to job until my career dreams were fully realized.

I was doing too much assuming and not enough asserting.

Don’t fall into this trap. Yes, you’ll get help along the way, but you’re in the driver’s seat. Be clear on what you want and proactive in making it so. Regarding being clear on what you want, see the next point.

  1. Meaning starts with “me.”

You’re the only one who can ascribe meaning (or not) to what you spend your time on. Pursue the life and career that you want, not that someone else expects of you. The word “meaning” starts with “me” for a reason. This is the key to having a truly meaningful, fulfilling career–and life.

Bronnie Ware (a palliative nurse) captured the misgivings of the dying in her book The Top 5 Regrets of the Dying. Number one on the list of regrets?  “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”

  1. Seek authenticity, not approval.

This directly relates to number two. When we seek approval we’re seeking external validation, which is an empty victory at best and elusive and confidence eroding at worst. If approval equals success for you, know it’s a never-ending quest. Instead, let a desire to serve your authentic self drive your actions.

  1. Know that your definition of success will change.

25 years ago it was all about getting promoted as often and fast as possible. Now, it’s about serving something greater than myself as broadly and deeply as possible. I didn’t see that coming.”

This week’s focus is on success. Has your definition of success changed over the years? Are you focusing on your desires or someone else’s? Do you feel you have a truly meaningful, fulfilling career–and life?

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