Defining Success

Small string of tiny lights held up by two hands

Success is defined in the dictionary as: the accomplishment of an aim or purpose. Successful people, therefore accomplish goals they set. Beyond that – success is deeply personal and ranges in definition across the board. For some, success might be linked directly to financial gain. For others, it could be linked to minimalism or living off the grid. However, if happiness is part of your personal definition of success, it might be helpful to know that the correlation between happiness and material success fades after basic needs are met.

Our society is set up in a way that perpetuates comparison by feeding us a twisted version of success that is most often defined by fame, riches or beauty – it’s what feeds our consumer economy. It is up to us to release ourselves from that narrative and take an honest look at our values and what makes us truly happy as individuals and measure our success against how well we stack up in those areas.

In his book “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck”, author Mark Manson shares what he has come to view as “good values” and “bad values”. He writes that good values tend to be 1) based in reality, 2) socially constructive, in that they benefit others, and 3) fully controllable. He lists honesty, humility, self-respect, charity, innovation, creativity, curiosity, and standing up for yourself or others as examples of good values. Mark also writes that bad values tend to be 1) superstitious, 2) socially destructive and 3) not fully controllable. Feeling good all the time, being popular, being liked by everyone, always being the center of attention, never being alone, being rich for sake of being rich, acquiring dominance through violence, expecting or forcing everyone to agree with your view and insisting that things must be either right or wrong without flexibility or “shades of grey” are examples he uses to describe bad values. 

If you’re having trouble defining what success looks like to you, here are some additional healthy options. Once you review them, you may realize that you are already quite successful.

  1. Someone who sets clear goals and makes a plan to achieve them. Knowing what you want is half the battle! Visualizing what you want your life to look like will be your compass moving forward. 
  2. Someone who is always doing their best no matter what is happening in their life. Doing your best looks different for everyone! For one person it might look like getting up at 6am instead of 9am…while for another it might look like getting up at 9am instead of 12pm. It’s all relative. 
  3. Someone who lives with integrity. When you say you’ll do something, you do it. Living with integrity also leads to confidence. You’ll show yourself what you’re truly capable of, and in turn you’ll likely start to surround yourself with individuals who hold the same standard of staying true to their word. 
  4. Someone who is failing forward. Failure is inevitable and instead of perceiving it as a negative thing, we can start to look at failure as the most valuable opportunity for growth. 
  5. Someone who believes in himself. In order to be successful, patience and persistence is required. A major difference between people who reach their goals and those who don’t is simply not giving up. Nothing is an overnight success. 

Hypnotherapy can be a Useful Tool

Successful people understand the power of taking responsibility for their own wellbeing. Knowing that we have the power to create our own reality takes us out of the ‘victim’ mindset and puts us in the driver’s seat. At the end of the day, we’re all working on curating a fulfilling and happy life. If you are consciously working on creating that environment for yourself, you are already a successful person! 

Of course, that may be easier said than done and this is where the inner work comes in. To create a mental state of wellbeing, mindfulness practices and work around personal growth are essential. Hypnotherapy can help you define your values and personal definition of success or help you to shift from bad values to better ones by connecting you to a deeper, wiser and more authentic part of yourself. Hypnotherapy can also help you become more successful by assisting with visualizing the future and giving your subconscious mind a road map to follow, eliminating self-destructive habits or limiting beliefs and/or building the confidence, belief in yourself or stress resilience you may need to achieve your goals.