Base your success on happiness, and you will fail.
Happiness is the most common answer to the questions “what do you consider success?” I cringe each and every time I hear it. You see, ultimately, you have no control over your happiness. Tragedy strikes and your spouse dies. Your happiness instantly diminishes. Are you less successful because the feeling is gone? Not in the slightest.
We need to base our sense of success and self-worth on more than a fleeting emotion. This is important in both life and in business. There will be amazing days and infuriating days. From personal experience, if you are in business to be happy, you are in for a tough journey. So, if it isn’t happiness, how should we define success?
Five years ago, a business companion and mentor laid out his personal formula for success. His success was based upon personal achievement in the following five places: family, finance, friendships, fitness and faith. He had simple goals for each of these areas. To him, a successful day was defined by whether or not he made progress on his goals within at least one of these areas. If he was one step closer, then today was a great day. It was based upon the balanced quality of his life.
So many people argue over whether you can define success by how much wealth you acquire. The answer is a simple yes. Of course you can. It just isn’t the whole formula. If you are massively financially successful but have no one to share it with, sacrificed your health, and have no sense of purpose, then you will be completely miserable. You need some level of satisfaction in all five areas.
I often look over the reasons I am in business. I have such strong passion for our business I have to be careful not to let it consume my life. I have learned not to define my success by the daily ebbs and flow of my business. I have long-term business goals, family plans (go, go, baby making power), make time for the strong friendships in my life, continue to push myself every time I surf and will never end my personal quest for growth & meaning. The fact is, it is not about feeling happy, it is about living a purpose filled life, with a balanced focus on the right places.