Living My Success

 In Weekly Forum Discussion

On the days when I long to hide in the cave of familiarity, with the meadow of possibility beckoning me to wade in, the failures and perceived failures play in my mind like a never-ending movie. The successes seem dim or apparently non-existent, and I must force myself to reevaluate my accomplishments. Looking at my definition of success this week has been a good exercise to focus on those dreams which are an expression of me.

I have always loved to study, learn, and create, even as a teen, at a time when most girls became teachers, nurses, secretaries, or homemakers. It has taken me years to realize that many of my perceived failures were goals or expectations placed on me by others, or at least they were, in my mind.

The dictionary defines success as,

The accomplishment of an aim or purpose; the attainment of popularity or profit; a person or thing that achieves desired aims or attains prosperity.

Making money is necessary for living, enjoying extras, and having fun, but I believe success is unbalanced if based only on a huge bank balance and a great bottom line. As well, having someone tell me I am a success or a failure based on their definition of what a woman my age should have accomplished, does not define success for my purpose, dreams, and goals.

What is my definition of success? I believe success is to live my life so my actions match my beliefs. My faith is part of who I am, and infuses the positive message I offer as I speak. Success means I work towards being the best I can be, and help others along the way. I long to be an inspiration to others, offering positive messages of hope in the middle of tough stuff, through my writing, speaking, and mentoring. Success includes my attitude of spending time and energy to reach my dreams. I can let my imagination soar and dream big, but to be successful I must plan the steps needed to reach the goals which will allow those dreams to unfold.

Recently, I wrote a list of what I had published, and where I had presented since January 2010. These items fit with my dreams and goals; the list was longer than I thought it might be.  But, had I really accomplished very much?  The answer staring back at me from the paper silenced those negative monkey voices, at least for a little while. I am an inspirational speaker, who shares real life stories to encourage others that there is hope in the darkest times of life. I challenge others to have the courage to include and share stories of the benefits when challenging things happen. The list of groups I have presented to shows that I have indeed ventured into the field of possibilities, with positive results.

The stories I have written have touched the lives of people I have not had the privilege to meet in person. Some things I have written and not published, but shared with one or two people with whom I felt led to give the story. They told me it was exactly what they needed to read at that time. Yes, I have ventured out of the cave of familiarity with positive results.

My dream has begun. Studying, learning, speaking, and writing might not be the expectations others have for me. Success is not reflected by having huge sums of money in the bank, I am successful because I am living in a way that reflects what I say I believe. I am successful because I am following through on the abilities I have been gifted with. I am successful because I share from my heart.

There are days I need to remember the successes to silence the negative monkey voices that chatter through my mind telling me all I do is not good enough. I will remember the affirmations and the encouragements while I reach towards my ever-expanding dreams. My husband tells me I might have to live to be 105 years old to accomplish all my ideas. Each day, my time will be well-spent as I work toward successfully owning the dream of being an Inspirational Writer and Speaker.

Written by: Carol Harrison; Carol’s Corner

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