Are you successful?
Do you consider yourself a successful person? Think about it for a while…
How do you measure it? What is it that drives you? What are your core values?
I have always been a big fan of self-awareness and conscious life. I think life is too short to spend it unconsciously following some other people without actually having time to think about ourselves. In the day-to-day communication, what is shocking me always, what I cannot get used to, is that people generally don’t care.
We’re living in the times of people chasing their dreams, which they don’t really know. When you ask them what are they dreaming about, you may easily notice that they are actually trying to find out. The easiest, most common answers are financial goals/benefits that they could think of, be that a nice car, or a big house, sometimes they mention family.
We’re all taught that family is important, we glorify money because until you actually get rich, you can’t really say if this will bring you the desired happiness, or will that rather stress you more, make you greedy and willing to get more of it. We only see the short-term benefits — new car, new this and that. Probably most of those benefits are actually fulfilling our will to show the others, how successful we are. I think that there are as many rich people that are happy, as the ones that can’t count their money but are depressed, stressed and lead anything but a successful life.
There is one fact we should all be thinking about, keep it always in mind: we have only one life, and it won’t get any longer than it has to be. We should live in the way, that will make us happy when the time comes. Minimize regrets, maximize satisfaction.
There is a great quote from Steve Jobs talk, given at the Stanford I want to bring up here… I highly recommend to check it out, whatever you’re doing. Now.
For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
What a brilliant, meaningful, crushing sentence. There’s so much in it, that reading it 10 times is still a little, I think that over time I reached more than 500 but each time I have new conclusions when thinking about it.
What are you thinking about when you are looking in the mirror each day? If today would be the last day of your life, how would you rate your life on the scale 1–10? Would you actually care about the other people? The neighbor that has a better car, or the friend that got the promotion instead of you, would you care about all the other people around the world? I believe not.
In the situation when everything is to be finished, and there’s no way out, only your values actually matter. Having to know them, is essential.
But how to know your values, if we don’t get to spend the time and just have this discussion with ourselves? I think this might be one of the most important things in our lives — getting to know ourselves. Yet, we’re more focused on getting to know everything about the others, instead of focusing on us for a while. I encourage, I challenge you to do this and write your values down on a piece of paper. This is a very good start.
What happens next? When you know your values already, you should probably also look back at your life from the perspective of those values. Do you live up to those values? Are your choices driven by what’s important for you, or is somebody else taking the decisions — even if you think that it was you doing it? Taking conscious decisions in regard to our core values is crucial to becoming a successful person. You cannot see yourself as a loser if you always act upon your values. I believe this is where success is born.
One more thing, related to this topic, also very straightforward reading the quote from Steve: you have to be disciplined, motivated and patient. Can you imagine doing something for 33 years, every day? Probably for many of you, 1 month is already a challenge. People don’t reach their goals overnight. It’s a ton of regular actions, according to our values, executed each day, that build up to the final success. Many people just give up and this is the only reason for their failure, many people don’t even take the chance to try. You have to build the self-discipline in you and stay patient.
Remember, that when the time comes, you will not regret the things you tried and failed upon, you will rather regret the things that you haven’t tried.
Know your values. Act upon it. Stay patient. Be happy. Be successful.