Thoughts on rethinking success

Courage. Happiness. Kindness. That's all we need.

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I recently had an amazing session with my life coach, Kait Rich (yes, I have a life coach. Roll your eyes, I know, but honestly she’s AMAZING) where we talked about that big, bad abstract concept of success.

Do I consider myself successful? How do I define success?

Kait has been instrumental in shifting my mindset on many things, setting up good systems with my work and helping me manage my anxieties in useful and profound ways.

After going through an immense burnout earlier this year and slowly finding myself again, I’ve had to really go back to the basics and retrain my brain to think in new, positive and productive ways.

You don’t need me to say that old habits die hard, and being hard on myself has been my way of life since as long as I can remember.

Up until recently, when I would be lauded for my successes, be given praise, be featured on the news or even win an award, I would always think to myself, yeah yeah yeah, whatever, I could be doing more. I still haven’t done this or that.

rethinking success

Speaking at one of our Travel Bootcamp events

I’m not successful because I’m not a millionaire, I don’t own my own house, I’m not on the New York Times bestseller list or even finished my first book. I haven’t been interviewed by Oprah (yet). My list of things I want to accomplish still is enormous. The things I haven’t done are endless.

By my own definition, I’m a total failure.

Why do I do this to myself? What do I sabotage my own success? I never actually *sit in* my achievements, instead I continually move the success bar higher and higher, always out of reach, I’m never quite good enough. How fucked up is that?

My own definition of success is impossible, unachievable.

I don’t need anyone to tell me that’s pretty toxic and is a big contributor to me feeling anxious, depressed and generally overwhelmed. I’ve set the bar so high I can never reach it, and if I somehow manage to, I move it even further out of reach.

rethinking success

Instead now I’m vowing to be proud of myself and what I’ve done every single day, and also to completely redefine what success means to me moving forward.

All I want now is to wake up feeling well and happy and excited for the day (a big ask since I’m a raging insomniac). Something really simple but still eludes me. I want to be able to deal with adversity, shrug off my triggers and not hold on to things that are bad for my soul. To feel strong is one of my biggest dreams. I want to sleep all night and feel fit all day.

I want to spend time with my friends and be there for them and my family more. I hope to feel strong and healthy, full of energy and excited for all the possibilities of the future. I want to see my plant babies grow up and thrive. I hope to learn to be a better cook.

After all the business of life is enjoying where you are on the way to where you’re going, right? I am enough, and you know what? You are too.

How do you feel about success? Do you need to be kinder to yourself too? Spill!

rethinking success

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13 Comments on “Thoughts on rethinking success

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  1. As someone who’s survived a stroke and now have a chronic condition because of that I would urge you to think about what you have accomplished. You’ve traveled widely and been able to blog successfully about it. That’s awesome! in my opinion, you are a success. Really!

    If you would like to write a book, set aside a little bit of time every day to do that. Even if you only write one page a day, it adds up over time.

    Blogging is writing. A lot of your content here can be compiled into a travel book. You also have obvious photography skills. Again, I’m impressed!

    The trick is focus on your goal (whatever that is) and take it one step at a time. That’s how I’ve managed to write six novels, several short stories, a film review blog, and some screenplays.

    Success is what you decide it is. And I wish you the very best! You got this! 🙂

  2. I used to always have my eyes on the bigger picture, but now I have finally come be happy for my smaller accomplishments. I set a lot of goals, and when I reach those goals I usually treat myself to something small. Like a bowl of ice cream or buying an expensive pre workout lol. I’ve noticed that doing that really helps me to achieve my goals quicker and it just helps to keep my motivated. Thanks for sharing, hope you’re having a great day.

    -Kate

  3. I slid on black ice and nearly wiped out my passenger. Any trip without serious injury is a success. But easy to take it for granted and not see it that way.

    But those successes aren’t enough. So we set higher goals. Some of those drive us to make a positive difference for others. And some we don’t reach.

    Letting other people’s opinion define our success isn’t a good path. When our own definition is a dead end, there must another option…

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