“The elevator to success is out of order. You’ll have to use the stairs, one step at a time.” ~Joe Girard
My answer would be a resounding YES!
The answer sounds surprising to me, how about you?
Of course, you know there has to be a catch, and yes, my answer does need clarifications.
A little back-story might be appropriate here. As a child abuse survivor and one who professes to have overcome a host of addictions and mental illnesses such as PTSD, Social Anxiety Disorder and on the road to recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, it would be easy to say it has taken decades for me to “get better”.
But in reality, the problem was not that I wasn’t successful, in fact, everything I pursued I accomplished. I wanted to work in retail as a teenager so I went to the manager every other day for an entire summer until he finally said: “I’m going to hire you, that way if you fail I can fire you and never see you again”. (I have my father to thank for that trick).
At the age of 21 I knew that I needed rehab but I didn’t want to lose all my partying friends, so I literally went to my core group and talked them into going also, and then had to have a heartwrenching conversation with each of their parents… but they all went in with me. I honestly don’t know if any of them made it, but I was now free to get sober and start a new life because “they had the same chance I did”.
After that, still in my early 20’s I wanted a career in computers and to work for IBM. Through schooling and a series of Divine Appointments (I don’t believe in random coincidence), I found myself working for a company called Dataserv, which back in the ’90s serviced more IBM Point-of-Sale equipment than even IBM itself.
So why then with examples like that and dozens more over the next 30 years would I still be battling depression, alcoholism, be single, have mountains of credit card debt and wonder why life was so unfulfilling.
In hindsight, I realize it was because my definition of success was wrong.
I fell into the trap called The American Dream
- Get a job
- Go to college
- Get a career
- Get married
- Have 2.5 kids
- Put kids through college
My whole life was about “what is next” and “I’m not happy until I achieve it”.
Even worse is when success is defined by material gain (new car, a bigger house, promotion, hot wife…) Getting “stuff” can leave someone more empty than before they had it, just ask the lonely, depressed, and often suicidal success moguls or the 70% of bankrupt lottery winners, or the Olympians who lost their sense of identity
The milestones of life and accumulation of wealth, power or prestige MUST NOT be the definitions of success, it is a lose-lose. You will be sad if you never get it and you will be left empty when it doesn’t fulfill long-term.
They can be byproducts of a full and blessed life, however, the ultimate success must be defined under a completely different set of criteria.
Hopefully, the point is becoming clearer. When my eyes were finally opened I realized that the problem wasn’t “I had not achieved success yet”, it was that I had the wrong definition of success.
Once I took the time to discover my core values and align my beliefs, thoughts and actions with them, and then began living every part of my life from that place, then a fascinating thing happened that I never expected.
I discovered new self-worth, satisfaction in a simple good days’ work, greater clarity on why I’m doing what I’m doing, greater intentionality to enjoy every relationship and pour myself into every Divine Appointment.
Problems today have simply become things that I will overcome, not something that I fear I can’t overcome.
I won’t be stopped from my destiny because I live it out every day. Sure, some of my goals get delayed by circumstances and others will take a long time to achieve, but as long as I am living balanced, focused and intentional I consider every day a resounding success, each small accomplishment is another step navigated on my proverbial stairway to heaven.
So how could you wake up tomorrow morning a complete success and live your best day right away?
For me, I had to change my beliefs, attitudes, and perspectives
I try to take at least one uncomfortable risk each day, and connect with at least one family member, one friend, and one accountability peer each day, I work on my business most every day (because I love what I do), and I eat healthily and exercise. I also need to laugh every day, and I offer grace and respect to others.
And if I don’t do all those things every day, I also give myself grace, for I know that my heart is good, I believe I am who God says I am and that I am living in my destiny already.
(Mind you I have no income, my health is poor, and I am risking everything on my new business endeavor (Nikaos Coaching), and I’M loving it… no fear just hurdles, and with each one I clear, I learn to jump higher!)
I believe that my self-worth (me loving me and being proud of my progress – not perfection) is my success and that comes from intentionally using the ability to love and problem solve that we are all born with, and my success is no longer tied to a fleeting achievement or milestone.
My sincere wish is that everyone can experience this same breakthrough and realize just how easy “success that matters” actually is.
As a life coach, I live for helping others remove the limiting beliefs and become super-aware of the unhelpful thinking patterns that squash progress, creativity and courage. I also help people get in touch with the dreamer inside who may have gone dormant from decades of being ignored, and help discover and define your core values so you can be assured you are pursuing the right goals to bring the greatest levels of self-satisfaction. Once the wreckage of the past is cleared away, you are ready to fuel up for launch and reach escape velocity into your best life. The solutions are simple but elusive. With the right guide, miraculous breakthroughs are possible. ~George Crone