A New Look at Defining Success

Climber on the summit

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.
~Henry David Thoreau

For years this quote hung on my office wall.

It was a reminder to follow my heart and pursue my dreams. To live the life I wanted to live.

I am currently reading Wishes Fulfilled by Wayne Dyer and in it he shares this quote as a definition of success. Funny, but I never considered it that way. Yes, the quote talks about meeting with success, but I always focused on the pursuit of dreams part of the quotation.

Dr. Dyer’s comment has caused me to step back and look at this quote more closely.

As I shared in my book, Breaking the Spell, defining success is somewhat of an elusive quest. In my research I discovered that everyone has their own definition—their own take on what constitutes success.

I must admit, I think I like the idea of success being measured in following my own dreams and pursuing the life I want.

Perhaps this quote will become my new definition of success.

Coincidentally, today is my 31st wedding anniversary. And rather than looking at that statistic as a measure of success (i.e. we’ve been married for 31 years so our marriage is a success) I think I’d rather look at it like this… we’ve spent the last 31 years living life and pursuing our dreams together. We’re living the life we want, together, and THAT is why our marriage is a success.

What do you think?

Please post a comment and share your thoughts.

About Debbie

After spending 32 years in marketing, Debbie now spends her time blogging, teaching online courses, doing volunteer pet therapy, and encouraging others to follow a more inspired path through life.

1 comment on “A New Look at Defining Success

  1. I think… you have everything to celebrate together! Congratulations to you both and your daughters too.

    Personally; I respond whole heartedly to your new quote and have found that this perspective brings deep well-being…for me. Only focusing on the results as a measure of success can be a narrow and biased filter as there are times in life when what is showing up in my everyday world looks pretty chaotic, not so great, ‘unsuccessful’ in terms of amounts of money, possessions, recognised status and yet my inner world is doing fine. The outer world can definitely be impacted by other’s destructive actions, yet my inner world and my relationships with others, my thoughts, feelings and actions are up to me and I am free to create and follow what brings me fulfillment in life – money may bring easier access to commodities and services, however it certainly does not guarantee satisfaction, health, connection and deep well-being.

    Enjoy your marvelous anniversary Debbie and Louie! What wonderful inspiration you are to us all.

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