Redefining Success

We live in a world that consistently chases after this thing called success. The word may bring images of anything from Steve Jobs to the first monkey in space. For me, the ultimate success would be to become Leslie Knope or a sloth, neither of which I can be. So what does success even mean? 

Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s first definition of success is “the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect or fame.” While success can mean many things, this definition is the inescapable zeitgeist of modern culture, and a younger generation racing to rise up is being let down by the insurmountable wall of how we look at success. 

At its most basic, success is the mere fact of attaining a desired result. Now, society has imposed one desired result upon all people – wealth, respect and fame. It is time for us to see success as relative. Delight in the days when waking up feels like an achievement. Delight in the days when you sleep a lot because your body needs it. Delight in getting stuff done, and getting a rest. Bottom line: this giant target we call success is relative. 

This quote, of all the endless quotes on success, struck out to me, for if success is an endless cycle, where does it all end? I don’t have a definition for you – and that’s the point. You create your own success, every day, as you’re exactly where you’re meant to be and headed exactly where you’re meant to go. In the words of my girl Sara Bareilles, “Compare where you are to where you wanna be and you’ll get nowhere.”