We all define success differently. Maybe you feel satisfied when you excel in your career or have financial stability. Or maybe you base success solely on the people you are surrounded by, or a combination of both.Becoming successful doesn’t just happen, it’s a series of choices that ultimately leads to having what we choose to define as success. It doesn’t matter how much you know, or how much mentoring you invest in, or how much you spend on other parts of your growth.
However you define being successful, at the end of the day we all need some basic building blocks to allow us to enjoy that path of success and ultimately happiness. Otherwise, even with the best people surrounding us, and all the money in the world, it will only ever be temporary.
Here are 3 things that are keeping you from being successful and how to change them:
Problem #1: Your finances dictate your emotions
How much of your emotional state is tied directly to how much money you have available to you in a single moment? When your bank account feels abundant and full, or you just got paid, what are some of the thoughts that go through your mind? Stability, comfort, or excitement?
What about when it’s the opposite? When you have less than you would like or even need. Fear, anxiety, or insecurity?
Solution: Start seeing money as a tool, instead of letting it define your worth.
It can seem difficult not to be on an emotional rollercoaster when it comes to looking at your finances, especially if you are struggling to make ends meet. It can even follow the cycle of an abusive relationship in some cases.
When money becomes a tool, you can start to view your finances or your bank account as a resource to be used and leveraged for growth. What ends up happening is you go from spending money for the sake of spending money to spending money for a return. And that return doesn’t always have to be more money.
“A wise man should have money in his head, but not in his heart.” – Jonathan Swift
Problem #2: You’re focused on the potential hurdles and pitfalls
It’s only natural to want to anticipate potential problems and hardship. In fact, being able to anticipate and move past difficult situations is something that is frequently found in many great stories of success.
But when those hurdles become your focus or what you use to define yourself, that’s when it starts to hold you back. Psychologically speaking, hardships can start to feel as if they are permanent fixtures when they become your primary focus.
Solution: Create an end goal, and focus on what needs to happen to achieve that goal
John Carmack once said, “Focused, hard work is the real key to success. Keep your eyes on the goal, and just keep taking the next step towards completing it. If you aren’t sure which way to do something, do it both ways and see which works better.”
The problem with focusing on the hurdles in front of you is, you aren’t actively thinking of or working on whatever it is you want to accomplish. What this does is, takes away your ability to see the bigger picture of any one situation. By keeping what you want to accomplish as your focus, the hurdles you experience become something to be worked around, instead of something to be solved.
Problem #3: You allow failure to define a situation
Failure is one of those tricky things; we all experience it, but the first natural instinct is to run away from it. Failure is one of those painfully subjective things that we have a tendency to internalize. When looking at failure we see something that is done wrong or that is otherwise harmful.
So it would be natural to see a failure and deem related efforts not worth it and to quit after one attempt, or to maybe not even start in anticipation of failure.
Solution: Start treating failure as if it was an experiment, not a result
Failure is the result of having tried, meaning something was done to get a result, even if it was a negative one.
When failure becomes a result based on a series of events, you can then take a moment to see what caused things to happen as they did and change them for the better. The best part, you can go through that process as many times as you like.
“I’ve had great success and I’ve had catastrophic failure. It’s really how you handle the rough stuff that defines you.” – Peter Berg
For me, success is defined by having incredible experiences with those who matter most. And the reality is it takes a combination of time, understanding, and sometimes money to make that happen.
Allow yourself to try to change destructive habits, fail at them, and then try again. Give yourself the opportunity for success.