The last while my “day job” has kept me busy. That “day job” is actually a misnomer, as it is all contract work in my professional field.
I knew I could get trapped into thinking I wasn’t a success because I wasn’t spending “x” number of hours in my little business on top of those other hours. However, I decided ahead of time that I wasn’t going to fall into that trap. I started considering what success means.
I know that many people consider success as money or power, and the more of it the better. Most businesses need to define success as selling a certain number of goods or services, measured with net income.
I decided to ask a question on a forum about how other people define success. The answers I got were interesting. I had 14 people respond to my question, so statistically it isn’t a robust sample at all. However, there were a few general types of answers, and some gave more than one type of answer.
Total respondents 14
Monetary success 6
Completion of tasks 2
Enjoyment of life 7
I suspect some of the difference between the different types of answers depends on a variety of factors, including personality and health. For example, if a person has the drive, need, and the health to accomplish a lot, counting success in monetary terms is very reasonable. There are times when any one person will not have those attributes in combination, whether for a day, week, month, or longer. When that happens, the definition of success may need to be changed.
When life comes up wonky, here are some possible ways someone could consider oneself a success:
Not yelling at the kids when they have been running through the house...for the 20th time in one afternoon.
Finally finishing one widget.
Talking to one more person about one’s business.
Taking time off from work to recover from illness.
Getting help to pull out from an emotional tailspin (of whatever type).
Let me know how you define success, I’d love to hear it.