Measuring Success

by - November 16, 2012

I like lists. From to-do lists in my planner to how-to lists online. Thanks to Yahoo, I read a lot of lists -- how to get a flat tummy, how to land that promotion you want, the worst jobs for stress, etc.

One of my coworkers shared this article on her Facebook last week about the eight things remarkably successful people do, and I have to say that I didn't really agree with it, mainly because it leaves no room for personal achievements outside of the workplace.

If you type in "measuring success" in Google, you'll get more than 55,000,000 results. You can find strategies to determine if your small business is successful, if you're utilizing your social media sites successfully ... and the list goes on and on with news articles and blog posts.

If you look up the definition of success, this is what you'll find:
1. the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors.
 2. the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.
3. a successful performance or achievement.
4. a person or thing that is successful.

If you look in the thesarus, this is what you get: favorable outcome.

It seems to me that everyone measures success differently -- my theory is supported by the millions of search results on google and the varying definitions in the dictionary. So I decided to look at my own life and career and make my own measure-of-success list, and my list is very simple.
Yep. That's it.

Step 1: Ask yourself this question - "Am I happy?"

If you answer yes, consider yourself successful. If the answer is no, find something to do that makes you happy and start over.

Simple right?

Whoever said life has to be complicated?

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  1. I am a great believer in keeping it simple, Ashton, and I like your definition of success. I might add that we can all learn to experience happiness regardless of circumstances. People who require everything to be perfect all the time in order to feel happy are setting the bar impossibly high. When you consider the alternative, simply awaking to a brand new day should be enough to make you happy.

    1. I think what saddened me the most in my research for this post was the inordinate amount of emphasis that was put on wealth and materialistic gains. That may be what the majority of America considers successful, but I can almost guarantee that most of those 'successful' people aren't all that happy. Money cheapens things.

  2. Ooh wow. I truly enjoyed this. So thought provoking! I like how you were able to simplify things into one question.

    P.S. I'm a big list maker myself! ;)