We might not like to think so but success is a pretty narrow term; to the majority of us it means we have got the job, made the money or found the partner we want. Whilst setting these goals or having these dreams help us to define who we are and how we want our life to be, they leave very little wriggle room for appreciating different types of achievement.
If we’re not careful, setting a goal to acquire something (a job, a house, money, an improved physique etc) could leave us feeling unhappy and unfilled until we get it. Any effort that falls short of bringing about the final result becomes a fail, when really all we’re failing at is ignoring the progress we’ve already made. Success isn’t about attaining the end result; success is the journey itself.
Imagine living a life you know is wrong for you. You might desire a better job or to live a different lifestyle in a different country. In these situations we tell ourselves that we’ll be happy once this dream is realised. We make ourselves believe that our happiness is directly tied to what we want to get, have, do or be, but the truth is getting the job, or moving to our desired location, is just the physical manifestation of the success. The victory is to be found in the courage, perseverance and freedom that come with following our dreams.
When we take the time to acknowledge and praise ourselves for all the hard work we put into attaining our goal, we’ll see that every day is filled with a series of mini successes. Yes, they might not be mind-blowing, but they are still a step forward – even if it doesn’t seem so at the time.
So rather than seeing the end-goal as the ultimate marker of success, realise that your life is full of little victories. Just because they don’t result in a physical manifestation doesn’t make them any less important or valuable. Get into the habit of identifying all the successes you have every day – no matter how small or insignificant they seem – and you’ll soon realise you’ve travelled further than you think.
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