Someone asked me a question I had a hard time answering the other day:

“What is success? How do I achieve it?”

It’s such a hard question to answer because until you’ve achieved it (success), you can’t say what it is. It’s entirely subjective and enigmatic, and at best, I can make assumptions on what it is. 

Success isn’t measured by how much money you have, the kind of car you drive, or the size of home you own. It’s not measured by anything of materialistic or monetary value; rather, its measurement is more of an affirmation behind our spiritual values, the values that have to do with how we choose to live our lives, the direction of our goals and the existence of the meaning behind our actions. Success isn’t about what you’ve accomplished, but rather, how you’ve accomplished it.

It’s not how much money you made, but how you made that money:
Did you make that money doing what you’re passionate about doing?
Did you make that money with a greater purpose in mind, other than to trade it for other things of materialistic value?
Would you still do what you do if it weren’t for the money?

Maybe success is instead about discovering what it is that you’re passionate about and in the process, discovering yourself.

Maybe success is instead about acknowledging your past and being able to cast away regrets to focus on the present.

Maybe success is instead about recognizing the progress you’ve made towards the goals you’ve striving for.

Maybe success is instead what other people say:

“Success is the progressive realization of worthwhile goals and dreams.”

“Success is not what you accomplish in your life, it is about what you inspire people to do.”

“Success is the clarity of my intention… and reaching that intention while being true to myself and with joy.”

“Success is knowing your purpose in life, growing to reach your maximum potential, and sowing seeds that benefit others.”

I don’t know. I honestly can’t say what it is to be successful because I haven’t reached there yet. It’s one of those things where you either are or you aren’t. Until I’m actually successful, I’m not.

The only thing I do know is that I have the ability to find success. It isn’t because I have a carefully calculated formula for success, nor is it because I have the resources or know the right people to help me out. It’s having faith in my own ability to focus and continue working towards my goals.

It’s all I know and the only thing I can do. I don’t know what success is, but I do know that if I don’t put in the effort, pursue what I’m passionate about, and live a life I consider worth living for, I won’t ever find success.

The distance between dreams and reality is called action and that’s exactly what I’m doing now.