The Fundamentals of Success

The road to success and the road to failure are almost exactly the same.”

– Colin R. Davis

I love to travel, not only because of the places I see but for the people I meet. Once, when i was In India, trekking through the mountains in India, my seemingly uneducated guide in a torn jacket, Navaal, said, “Sir, what does success mean?”

I didn’t really know how to answer. Honestly, I had not thought about this for a really long time. When I was young, success meant different things to me: being highly educated, having lots of money, having a great job, being recognized for my work, being able to travel to the most luxurious places in the world… 

Then there are guys like Navaal, who dropped out of school after the 5th standard and started working as a tour guide to support his family – his widowed mom, his 19-year old wife, and a child of three. He considers himself a successful family guy with a complete life. 

So, the real question is: what is success?

I don’t think there’s any definite answer to this. Or, let me put it this way: success is what you want it to be. There’s no age or deadline for it, nor a yardstick to measure it. I know people who have had all the things I considered as symbols of success; yet they are unhappy. 

You can write your own success story at any age, and set any milestone you think defines you. It’s never too late to start working towards success because it does not come with a deadline. Every individual has his own goals, dreams, and priorities. 

My observations and experiences tell me that to different people, success can be about – 

● Money
● Education and Career
● Relationships
● Contributions to the World

So, are there are fixed steps to achieving success? 

No, there cannot be a one-size-fits-all formula. Having said that, I think there’s some reflection that you need to do, besides changing your perspective. Perhaps the following will help you understand yourself better before you define – and redefine – success for yourself and carve your own path.  

Self-Awareness

How much do you know about yourself? Are you aware of your own emotions and how you react in different situations? It is only when you know yourself that you can figure out exactly what you desire. 

Self-Respect

I don’t believe respect must be earned. I think that as a human, you’re already entitled to respect. Start believing that you’re already amazing. When you respect yourself, you won’t feel like proving yourself. 

Self-Love

Work hard and motivate yourself. Choose yourself first and take care of your physical and mental health. Stop being so hard on yourself. Instead, accept yourself and focus on self-growth instead of changes. 

Responsibility

There’s a lot that contributes to shaping our lives – our upbringing, environment, experiences, and even the way the world views us. But, in the end, it’s your own life. Remember that and take charge of it.

Lesson

Every effort you make, every experience you gain leaves you with a new lesson. What excites me is the part where I get to explore and discover something and learn something that can make me better. 

Journey

It’s true that the journey is what matters more than the destination. While you’re on the way, you’re resilient and patient – and get to enjoy the beautiful scenery. So, enjoy the adventure on the road! 

“Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Every time I have spoken to people who are perceived as successful, they all say one thing – that they enjoy doing what they do. Interestingly, self-proclaimed successful people with no money, education and career, family, or significant contributions, say the same thing. 

I believe that it boils down to one thing: Satisfaction. 

You don’t need to listen to others. You don’t need to meet the standards set by the world. You don’t even have to force yourself to stay positive and happy-high all the time! All you need to do is define your path – and hurt no one along the way.

Focus on yourself and your progress. Enjoy the journey. Who knows? Maybe success will find you soon.

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