For a very long time, I searched for the secret to success. And you know what?
I found none!
There’s absolutely no secret to success. There’s one thing most of these get-rich-quick scheme sellers won’t tell you. There’s one thing self-help gurus won’t tell.
It’s not a secret at all. It’s something you’ve probably heard many times but won’t pay attention to. It’s something we’ve been tricked to forget about, while we chase things that mean nothing to us. In other words, we are getting tricked to pursue other people’s dreams, instead of ours.
I know you’re starting to get confused.
Don’t get confused yet.
There’s something important you’ll learn from reading this article. But there’s something you must know before I let the cat out of the bag.
We All Want Success
Everyone wants to succeed. I haven’t met anyone that took a path because they intentionally wanted to fail. So, it breaks my heart when I see people fail.
According to Bloomberg, 8 out of 10 entrepreneurs who start businesses fail within the first 18 months. A whopping 80% crash and burn.
A Gallup research found that about 50% of new U.S. companies fail in their first five years.
Imagine five years of work, money, and hope – and it all just disappears?
That sounds harsh…
However, stats showed that 40 to 50 percent of married couples in the United States divorce. The divorce rate for subsequent marriages is even higher. Most of these couples certainly didn’t start out to fail. They wanted to succeed. But somehow down the road, they realized the marriage isn’t working, so they quit.
WHAT DO YOU REALLY DEFINE AS SUCCESS
Americans are known around the world as a materialistic country, always striving after things.
Americans define success by the things money can buy – such as snazzy cars, the size of our homes, and designer clothes.
An Israeli woman was asked if she had plans to come to Los Angeles to try to break into the Hollywood film industry. She replied, “Probably not since I can’t imagine being that far away from my family.” For her, success would be defined by her ability to get her film made in Israel, without compromising her family life.
I have a friend who doesn’t care about what’s going on in his career life. Success for him is the ability to have a Friday night out. It gives him the opportunity to forget everything about the boring corporate world.
Some people define success by the joy they feel when they work. The joy they feel when they’ve finished the work and the joy that others feel as a result of their work. For these people, it doesn’t matter how much money they’ve earned, or how many accolades they receive, they just don’t feel successful except they really love their jobs.
So stop pursuing success here and there. Think deep and find out what success means to you. Trying to copy your friend’s definition of success would only lead to one thing: failure.
To me, success means creating a business that empowers customers, employees, and community in equal measure. I want to add positive value to people’s lives, from a personal and professional standpoint.
THE MISTAKE THAT ALWAYS LEADS TO FAILURE
Above, I noted that many people fail in marriages and businesses. I’m sure you paid some attention to that point. You probably want to know why many of these couples and entrepreneurs fail.
For most of them, it’s not that they are lazy or lack passion for what they do. It’s just that they align themselves with the wrong people and ideas that make it almost impossible for them to achieve success.
For example, entrepreneurs whose primary goal is to make profits are in it for the wrong reason. Their chances of success are slim. But when entrepreneurs are in the business to help people improve their lives, then their chances of success are higher.
A married partner who’s in the marriage for the purpose of having kids certainly doesn’t have the right idea. Aligning yourself with such partner is wrong if you’re in the relationship to have a successful married life.
An entrepreneur whose definition of success is to change the world, and who then hires an employee whose definition of success is to make profits from the world – these are conflicting views that could eventually wreck the business.
So, it’s important you align yourself with the right people and ideas who will move you toward success. Associating yourself with the wrong people and ideas would make success almost impossible no matter how hard you try.
Success is sweet.
You need to find what success really means to you. But you shouldn’t let your definition of success take over your life. No matter what your definition of success is, you still have to care about other important aspects of your life like your health, career, family and other relationships. These things are what made you.
Image via: Kaboom Pics