Defining Success and How to Achieve It

Updated: May 22

Success is something that all of us are striving for. We want to feel like we have achieved something or gain a feeling of fulfillment. With the coming of the new year, New Year’s resolutions based around being successful are starting to be made. We can see it all over social media, with friends and family members making promises of success. If you’re like me you may feel like you don’t know how to start, or you’ve tried before, but you just couldn’t see the way through. You may ask “What does it mean to be successful? What does it look like? How can I achieve success?” I’m no expert I can tell you that, but I have done the research and know the formula. The best I can do for you is to share what I know about trying to make yourself what you want to be.

Let’s start with what success looks like. It can look like many different things to different people. Very rarely will your version of success be like someone else’s. Your version may be becoming the CEO of the company you work for, or maybe you want to be an entrepreneur and start your own business. Maybe you want to have a family and set your loved ones up to find success of their own. The only thing that matters when it comes to finding your success is what you view as success.

Coming up with your idea of success is the easy part. How can you obtain it though? The best of intentions can fall apart without having some kind of direction. What can you do to find your direction? One of the best ways to keep yourself on track is to set smaller goals for yourself, that way you can keep track of how close you are getting to your goals. My brother, for example, is trying to be more financially sound, and a few of his goals were to save one-thousand dollars as a rainy-day fund and pay off his debt. Those two goals are essential for anyone to be in control of their own finances. It doesn’t only work for finance issues. If you want to lose weight or just be healthier in general, make goals like “I want to be this weight by this time, or be able to run this far by this time.” You should try and make goals that best fit your lifestyle and schedule.

Alright, so you have set your goals and are ready to achieve them. The next step is coming up with a plan to achieve those goals. Depending on who you ask this can be the best or worst part about the whole process. I think it’s the worst due to my lack of planning skills. Not only can it take some time, but you may become overwhelmed with all the changes you may have to make and end up tossing everything out the door and saying, “There’s always next year.” The trick is to start small and don’t try to plan every little detail all the way up to your success. Unless that’s your jam then go for it, but if it’s not you should try to make a plan to achieve your first goal. If your first goal in a “be healthier” journey is to get more active and you have always lived a pretty sedentary life, don’t go and run a marathon. That’d probably do more harm than good. Start with a walk in the evenings or mornings, whichever your schedule allows. Then start walking farther than you did the week before or start jogging. Then just naturally progress from there.

Asking for help when you’re planning, if you’re not a planner like me, is probably a good idea as well. Having someone help plan can really take a lot of the stress away from the process. Having a good support system is a must when it comes to being successful. Nothing is worse than going at a large task alone. Frodo probably wouldn’t have made it to Mordor if it hadn’t been for the fellowship. That’s the same kind of mentality you need to have when trying to accomplish your goals. Have someone keep you accountable on your path or, better yet, find someone who is trying to achieve the same thing as you, then you can do it together. Having someone who is jumping the same hurdles as you can be the best kind of support, so go find your Samwise Gamgee and get at it.

You have your goals and your plan, now you just have to stay motivated. This can be hard to do. You can get tired or you may not make the goals that you set. It’s okay to be discouraged, you just can’t let it get in your way. If you do miss a goal take some time and rework them and find something that could work better for you. Social media is also a huge cause of people becoming discouraged. You may see someone you think is being more successful than you or that seems like they have everything together. Remember that everyone’s success looks different and so does everyone’s journey. Keep on the grind and you will get to where you want to be.

Success is not an easy thing to obtain, but it is obtainable by everyone no matter what you may hear. The important thing is to remember is that no matter how hard it can get you can push through and make it. Set your goals and find your support group and achieve success. What are some of your goals for success this year? Let me know in the comments!