Let’s discuss something exceedingly important today, something with the potential to impact every area of your life… for the rest of your life.

Ready? Okay… what is success? Broad question, right!? But you cannot underestimate its importance. 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 working 24/7, neglecting his two children, playing around with drugs, flirting with women other than his wife constantly and spending every penny he made. He had horrible relationships and was 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 21-year-old me, success meant driving a Mercedes-Benz, wearing designer clothes, holding a powerful position and being the BEST at everything!

You may say, “Dani, if that’s what you really wanted, then what’s wrong with going for it?!” But let me tell you where my pursuit of this so-called “success” led me…

Sure, I was a millionaire within 2 years, but 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 neglected my child. My life was a wreck! I had completely duplicated the man I learned from! Why? Because I had not defined success for myself.

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.

For you, success may be totally different than what it is for someone else. Society has sold you a message of “success”… lots of cars, big houses, popularity, a powerful position, the newest technology… basically, the latest and greatest of everything. It means having a degree from the most expensive and prestigious universities, taking lavish vacations, occupying a corner office with a view, employing a nanny to take care of your kids. It’s living a lifestyle of the “rich and famous.” At least, that’s success according to society’s definition.

And where has it led? We have credit cards so we can buy all the 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 see the kids – good thing we have a nanny!

THAT is society’s definition of success – and where this lifestyle will lead.

Your personal definition of success might be living a comfortable life, being debt-free, raising your own family, diligently working a reasonable number of hours. Your family comes first, but your work also prospers.

So that’s your definition of success, yet society continues to pressure you into neglecting your family and working 100 hours a week, so you can buy the house and cars and stuff, spending 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 today: What is success for you? What’s most important to you? Forget everything society has sold 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 literally 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’ve bought what society is selling 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’s on this list you created 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 every day for The Dani Johnson Show, to gain even more valuable insights and inspiration! You can find 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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