What ISN’T success?

Graphic image of many roads going in all directions with signpost pointing every-which-waySuccess.

We all want it. (And those who say they don’t haven’t done what I’m suggesting here. Instead, they’re rebelling against the stereotypical cultural definition.)

It’s the most important yet least intentional part of most people’s lives.

Think about that.

How much time have you put into defining what you, personally, REALLY mean by “success” – and then reviewing and updating that definition on a regular basis?

Or have you just gone along with what your parents want for you, or your friends strive for, or your managers at work have laid out for you … or whatever has presented itself to you?

And think, too, about this: how clear are you on what “success” means for your team, your department, and your company?

I push my clients to take time – plenty of time – to create a crystal-clear definition of success for themselves. A personal definition that they can feel in their body, that makes it worth getting out of bed on even the crappiest days. And likewise, I ask them to make sure they understand exactly what success looks and feels like in their work.

How will you know you’re getting closer?

How will you know you’re veering off track?

And here’s an interesting way of looking at it:

What isn’t success – for you?

Think about the traditional or family-defined ways of describing success.

What would you leave out, for yourself and for your team?

When I ask clients this question, they get very thoughtful. It feels disconcerting and a bit backwards to consider what should be intentionally left out of the definition.

And it creates surprising insights.

What about you? What would you leave out?