What does success mean?
Search online and you’ll get an answer like ‘Success is the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.’
What does success mean to you, however? Now that’s a whole different story.
Today, the internet and social media feeds are full of stories, videos and images of people who made it big. They invested their money and made a fortune. They built a business that thrived beyond their wildest dreams. They achieved sporting glory.
Fantastic stories, no doubt about it. They inspire us to keep going.
The only trouble is that we start to aspire to be like them. Their stories define success for us.
You can take part in a marathon, but you don’t have to aim to win it. That’s someone else’s aim. Yours could be to reach the finishing line. If you cross it, that’s success.
Success is what you make it.
Define your own success
Whether it’s in your personal life or your professional one, you’ve got to define your own success. Nice things are, well, just that: nice. They’re not everything.
It’s about having a plan and setting goals. What do you want to achieve? Once you know, you can form an idea of what success looks like and check you’re moving towards it.
You’ve got to look inside yourself, and identity your own values and what matters to you. These values will help you to establish these goals and guide you.
And when you’re following this path, don’t compare yourself to other people. What’s going on with them doesn’t matter.
If you’re chasing someone else’s dream, you’ll be chasing it forever. This is about you.
Setting your goals
Your goals give you focus.
Are you looking to increase your income? Are you looking to expand your business? Do you spend too much time working and not enough time doing the things you love outside of your business?
Whatever your goal is, it’s going to take a lot of work. Hard work. But it can be done. And it will be done.
Make sure your goals motivate you
The entrepreneur, author, philanthropist and life coach Tony Robbins talks about having big goals, goals that excite you, goals that motivate you. If they don’t excite you, they’re not big enough.
He’d be right.
Your goals must compel you. If you’re indifferent to the results, you won’t strive hard enough to accomplish them — and you may as not well bother setting them in the first place.
Set goals that relate to high priorities in your life or business, goals that require real commitment and which make you feel a sense of urgency.
Without that sense of urgency, you won’t do what it takes to make your goal a reality.
Make your goals SMART
That’s what SMART goals are.
It’s about focus.
Having a clear aim.
Making sure you can track if you’re close to reaching it.
Having a goal within your reach (don’t set yourself something completely outside the realms of possible) but which requires hard work and dedication.
Having a goal that relates to your life or business — remember what we said about not chasing someone else’s dreams.
Setting deadlines for your goals, which creates that sense of urgency and persuades you to use your time more efficiently to achieve it.
That’s setting a SMART goal.
Write your goals down
This is all about making your goal(s) real.
It’s an empowering act. There’s no ‘I would like to…’; it’s a clear ‘I will double my income’ or ‘I will expand by business by 2020’ or whatever it is you’d like to… no, whatever it is you will achieve.
Write your goals out on paper and post them places you can see them: your desk, your walls, your bathroom, your front door… wherever you’ll see them. They’ll remind you constantly what you’ve set out to do. Don’t let yourself down.
Form a plan
You’ve set out some goals that really get you going. Terrific!
Now, how are you going to accomplish them?
That’s right — don’t get so absorbed in establishing your goals that you don’t think about how you’ll make them happen.
Form a plan of action. Ask ‘What’s the immediate next step?’ and take it. It could be a bit of research. It could be an email or a phone call to a relevant person. Possibly a check over your accounts.
But take it.
Revise and persist
When you follow your goals, keep checking regularly whether you’re on course to succeed (I’m sure you will be).
Keep going, no matter how hard things get. When you truly commit to your goals, you’ll always make progress; and progress is success.
Dig deep. As the late Nelson Mandela once said: ‘It always seem impossible until it is done.’
Make your own success
Success is what you make it. Not me. Not them.
Create your own goals and don’t let the background noise of other people’s successes distract you.
Focus and arm yourself with the power to succeed.
And not just succeed, but succeed the way you wish to succeed.
If your goal happens to be an earnings goal, why not sign up for my FREE online course and learn the Essential Tactics For Growing Your Business with the aim of breaking through the VAT barrier?