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Redefine Success and Happiness on Your Terms

It’s a new world out there today, and we are all faced with the question of what that means for our own lives, careers, and futures. The facts can’t be denied. The economy is crumbling into pieces, people continue to lose jobs, and savings have been wiped out. Every time you turn on the news or hear about another friend who’s taken a pay cut, it can seem like Armageddon, or like watching Chicken Little crying out, “The sky is falling!” But, let’s get real. What’s falling apart around us wasn’t working, anyway. 

Be real. We were all chasing after something, working harder to make more and more to keep our lifestyles going … to get to the next promotion, the bigger house, newer car, and the next hot investment returning double digit growth. As a society and as individuals, we have been chasing after our lives so hard that we don’t even know if we are living the lives we really want to live. So thank goodness that they sky has fallen and we can all get our heads out of the hedge fund, accumulation mania, and achievement junkie clouds! It has been exhausting running on this treadmill, that frankly hasn’t made most of us any happier.

Be wise. There are two choices at all of our disposals as to how we approach this new world: One, like a squirrel, grab all your nuts, keep stashing away what you can and hide out until it’s all over, as if the world will ever be the same! Or two, see this new world as a great opportunity to redefine your life and get clear on what you really want, what success and happiness really mean to you so that you can build a life that will actually make you happy and successful.

We are living in a time much like the pioneers, when you can choose to seize the opportunity of creating a new world and determining your part in it. The old security blankets have been shaken out to show that they don’t offer so much security after all, and that is freeing. No longer do you have to work and be miserable just so you can retire, or climb up some linear corporate ladder in an attempt to reach some imaginary land where you will feel successful and happy … you can actually take the restructuring of the world as a time to pause, reflect, and redefine what it is that will truly get you the happiness and success you crave.

Be you. Know what makes you happy. Know what life you want to live and make sure you are living it. And make sure you know how you define success. Here are three questions you can ask yourself to start defining your true success and happiness.

  • Am I happy? When have I been most happy in my life? What was true.
  • Do I feel successful? How do I measure success? Expand your definition to include: emotional wealth, spiritual wealth, financial wealth, physical wealth, mental wealth, and communal wealth.
  • Am I living the life I really want to live? If the answer is no, make the change to make the answer yes!