You can tell a lot about yourself just by asking a simple question: How do you measure success in life?
We’re all driven by different ideas of success.
For some it’s cold hard money and that figure that sits in your bank account.
For others it’s fame—how many people are reading my blog, listening to my music, watching me on stage?
And for others still it might be how happy your family is; a happy family is a successful life.
The way in which you measure success reveals a lot about your personality, about the person you are at the end of the day.
Let’s shine a light on your own personality. Let’s reveal what your personal definition of success says about you.
So, how do you measure success in life…?
INFOGRPAPHIC. Read the full article below.
If you measure success based on money, here’s a little about you
So you measure success based on money alone.
Money. That’s your motivation. That’s what gets you up in the morning and keeps you motoring on through the day. And if there’s a lot of money in your bank account, you feel successful in life.
Money means different things to different people.
Some people make money simply to have nice items. Some people make money to feel secure. Some make money to give it away to charity. Some make money simply so they can say “Look at me, I have so much cash I could buy you.”
If you measure success based on money alone it means you’re a logical person who has business smarts and who knows how to get ahead in life. That’s the good news.
The bad news that if you measure success in life based solely off of money you’re lacking a more spiritual, emotional, and compassionate side. You’re also failing to recognise the true value of money.
Because money isn’t about a number. It’s about the amount of people, animals, and causes it can help. Your money could go to helping starving kids in Africa. It could go to making your friends and family feel happy and secure. It could go to helping poor people get a break in this often cruel world. That’s the real value of money.
If you measure success in life on money alone, try to see the real value of that money. Your money is worthless unless it goes to helping something worth helping–family, friends, charities, whatever you personally determine matters.
And always remember, some things are worth more than money.
If you measure success in life based on how many friends you have
Another way people measure success in life is based on their social networks. If you have a lot of friends you feel more successful, simple, especially if you’re going out with those friends often, you feel important to them, and you feel that your relationship to them is valuable.
A lot of people, and especially women, measure success in life based on their social networks. And that’s a good thing.
If you have lots of friends you’re making a valuable contribution to their lives and you’re influential to lots of different people, which essentially means you’re socially powerful.
And of course there are lots of benefits in having a great social network. You get to share your life with more people. You get to go out more often and go to more events. You get to feel connected.
One mistake made by those who measure success on life is this. They consider friendship a number more than a meaningful connection. Social “whores” will do whatever they can just to increase the sheer number of friends they have (one reason why Facebook is so popular).
But if you only see friends as a number you’re missing the point. Friendship is about making a meaningful contribution to other people’s lives. You can make as big a contribution with ten friends as you can with ten thousand if you’re truly very close to those friends.
If you measure success on your social life, measure the value of the contribution you’re making to their lives, not just the number of friends you have.
But you might also expect too much from your friends.
If you measure success based on your relationship
Lots of people measure success based on their marriage or relationship. These people don’t need a lot of money or a lot of friends, they just need to feel that they are truly closer to that one special person in their life.
This can lead to fantastic relationships. You’re fully committed and you truly care about the person you’re with. That special someone can truly feel the connection too. They know your relationship is sacred and they love you for it.
Problems can arise when you judge your relationship too much. You’re eager to make your relationship a success so you put a lot of emphasis on it and you look for any problems to iron out. But sometimes being so focused on success in a relationship can actually damage the relationship. This happens when you’re more concerned with making your relationship meet your personal idea of success rather than letting the relationship be what it is.
If you measure success based on your marriage or relationship, just make sure that you’re actually enjoying the relationship rather than placing too much stress on it. A flower is a beautiful thing but lean on it and it will bend, and keep pressing and the stem will snap and the flower will die.
If you measure success based on the things you actually do
One of the most popular ways of measuring success in life is to simply measure what you actually do.
If you measure success in life this way, you probably have a bucket list, you probably try to make the most of every single day, and you like to talk to other people about the wonderful things you’ve been up to.
This can be a fantastic way of measuring success in life. After all, life is to be lived, right? If you make the most of every day of your life you will surely end up with a successful life, and you will do a lot and have a lot of fun. Excellent.
People who measure success in life on events can burn out, though. If you think you have to get a ton done every single day you will often force yourself to do a lot when in truth you just want to put your feet up and chill out for a day, maybe in your pajamas with a cup of cocoa and Netflix.
If you measure success in life this way, make sure you’re not putting unnecessary stress on yourself. You’re an active person and probably fit, which is fantastic, but sometimes you just need to chill out, you know?
If you’re all about your own actions, make sure you are tracking these simple every day habits. They’re total game changers.
If you measure success in life based on your contribution to the environment, nature, and animals
You’ve probably seen some of my many articles on helping nature and loving animals. Personally, I think the environment is the most important thing we have and I respect the hell out of each and every one of you who do your bit to protect it.
If you measure success in life based on your contribution to the world and to the environment you are probably a deep and happy person. You understand true beauty and true value in the world, not as money or as a job but as nature and animals. You are probably mindful and spiritual and you are probably a very loving person, all of which are wonderful.
One mistake made by those who measure success in this way is that they can be judgmental and they can feel alienated from others who do not value the environment so highly. The trick here is to stick to your own beliefs and do what you feel is right but also let other people be who they are. Judging others for not perfectly recycling isn’t going to get you anywhere. It won’t make you happy and it won’t actually make people recycle properly either. Sure, you and I know why it matters, but they don’t. That’s okay. No one’s perfect. Let them be. Love them anyway.
If you measure success based on your religion or spirituality or a set of personal principles and beliefs
We all know how many people base their success on how closely they follow their religion, their spirituality, or their guiding principles. Maybe it’s your connection to God (or gods), maybe it’s how enlightened you are, maybe it’s just that thing that you truly believe in, that guiding principle that burns like embers in your soul.
Measuring success in this way can be a wonderful thing. If you follow your religion correctly then you will probably be a very moral person, if you follow it correctly. Man, that is a big if. Because we all sadly know about those extremists who do not understand their own religion. Truth is almost all religions are peaceful and loving if you read the texts accurately.
This has to be both the most wonderful and most potentially hazardous way of measuring success in life. Whether you’re a Christian, a Buddhist, a Hindu, a Muslim, whatever. Go grab your bible, the Bhagavad Gita, or the text of your own religion and you will find it full of truly wonderful morals and life lessons. But again, if your read it correctly.
Error comes in a variety of forms. For starters, is your religion truly your religion? So you have Catholic parents. So what. Are you a catholic? Or are you just doing what your family expects? If it’s the latter you’re lying to yourself and you’re following an idea of success that isn’t even yours.
And what about the manner in which you follow your religion? Do you hate other people with different beliefs? That’s not going to help anyone. Do you stuff your religion down people’s throats? They’ll hate you for it and you will not actually help the cause of your religion at all. And then there are extremists. Let’s not even go there. Let’s just pray for peace and love.
If you measure success based on religion, spirituality or beliefs, great. Just make sure they truly are your own beliefs and that you are following them correctly.
So what is the right way how to judge success in life?
All the above. All of the above have their merits. And a well-balanced person will base success on a combination of those measures.
You have to value money because… life. You need friends because without people to share your life with what’s it worth? You need relationships because you’re human. Without the environment humanity is more fudged than a nun in a brothel. Religions and beliefs give your guidance. And you need life experience because without that what have you actually done?
The right way to measure success in life is a combination of all those factors. And put on top of that health and family, and you’ve got yourself the best measure of success in life.
So how do you measure your own success? Leave a comment.
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