Let’s discuss something really important today, something with the potential to impact every area of your life… for the rest of your life.
What is success? Broad question, right!? But it’s importance cannot be underestimated. See, you need to define success for yourself, because if you don’t, someone else will define it for you!
My first 10 years of success were defined for me by somebody who was a workaholic, had been married and divorced a few times, who was in a committed relationship at that time yet still hitting on other women. So his definition of success involved being a workaholic, neglecting his two children, playing around with drugs, constantly flirting with women other than his wife, spending every penny he made. He had horrible relationships and definitely not a trustworthy person.
This was the first definition of success I ever saw, so that’s how I initially defined success in my career. For a 21-year-old me, success looked like driving a Mercedes-Benz, wearing designer clothes, holding a powerful position and being the best at everything!
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You may say, “Dani, if that’s what you really wanted, then go for it!” But let me tell you where my pursuit of that so-called “success” led me. Sure, I was a millionaire within 2 years, but I spent everything I made! At 21, I had already been married and divorced. I had a heart attack at 24 and a nervous breakdown at 25. I was neglecting my child. My life was a wreck! I had completely duplicated the man I learned from! Why? Because I had not defined what success meant for me.
I didn’t know who I was or what was important to me. I had no clue what I wanted my life to look like, what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go, who I wanted to be. And because I didn’t know, I took on someone else’s vision of success, leading me to absolute destruction.
What success means to you may be totally different than what it means to someone else. Society has sold you a message of “success.” It’s lots of cars, big houses, popularity, a powerful position, the newest technology… basically, the latest and greatest of everything. It means having degrees from the most expensive and prestigious universities, going on lavish vacations, occupying a corner office with a view, having a nanny to take care of your kids. It’s living a lifestyle of the “rich and famous.” According to our society, that is success.
And where has it led? We have credit cards so we can buy all the required stuff. We go into debt for bigger houses and nicer cars. We wear a mask so we can look powerful and happy and flawless. We spoil our kids with the very best, so they feel important, too… yet we’re working so hard and so long, we never even the kids – good thing we have a nanny!
That is society’s definition of success, and that’s where this lifestyle will lead.
Maybe your personal definition of success is living a comfortable life, being debt-free, raising your own family, working a good, reasonable number of hours. Your family comes first, but your work also prospers.
So that’s your definition of success, yet society continues to tell you to neglect your family and work 100 hours a week, so you can buy the house and cars and stuff, and spend money on anything and everything, just because you can. How do you feel after chasing a vision of success that isn’t even your vision? You feel like a complete failure, because you are now living someone else’s dream.
So here’s some food for thought: What is success for you? What is most important to you? Forget everything society has told you about success, and really think about what matters most to you. What do you want your life to look like? What do you want to do? Where do you want to go? Who do you want to be? What kind of people do you want around you?
Don’t just skip over this. Get a piece of paper and write all this down. Be specific. Don’t compare your definition of success with anyone else’s! If you think, “Well, my definition of success isn’t good enough,” it’s because you have listened to what society has sold you as success! You only get one shot at life! So define success for yourself and then go for it!
I would love to know what you came up with today. What is your vision? What is your definition of success? Share it with me below in the comments!
And don’t forget to join me today for The Dani Johnson Show to gain more insights, inspiration and vision for your life! Tune in to the show on your TV and radio and please remember you can always stream today’s show right here on our website.
In great faith,
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