If you have ambition and expectation about the steps you take in life it is inevitable that you will experience moments where you feel defeated or that you are not living up to what you envisaged.
Emotional Intelligence Expert Dr Travis Bradberry argues that we live in a world that reinforces this feeling. Even though most people wouldn’t say it, we usually equate success with material possessions.
He says that it is a shame that we fall into this mode of thinking, as a recent study from Strayer University found that 90% of people found that happiness was a bigger indicator of success than power or possessions.
When it comes to success, it’s often hard not to be consumed by the image of fancy clothes, big houses and expensive cars. Regardless of this, it is important to put life into perspective. Remember that there is always someone with more than you, and this can make you feel like you are losing, or not as successful. If you worry about this, you are likely measuring yourself against the wrong criteria. What you need to do is take a step back and give yourself a reminder as to what is real achievement in life.
Here are some key indicators that you should follow to help understand how successful you really are.
1. Positivity = Success
Dr Bradberry explains that “Hope and optimism are essential components of a happy life.” He goes onto say that “If you dwell on the things that go wrong, you become bitter and resentful. When that happens, you fail—no matter what you may have achieved. Real success means always seeing the bright side and believing you have the power to make even the worst situations better.”
2. Failure isn’t forever
Bradberry says the only people who fail are those who don’t try. “When you fail, you don’t automatically assume that you’re a failure. Instead, you embrace each failure as an opportunity to learn something—and then you move on. If you still struggle with this at times, know that you’ll never experience true success until you learn to embrace failure. Your mistakes pave the way for your success by revealing when you’re on the wrong path. The biggest breakthroughs typically come when you’re feeling the most frustrated and the most stuck. It’s this frustration that forces you to think differently, to look outside the box and see the solution you’ve been missing.”
3. Perspective is key
“Sometimes bad things happen. It’s part of life. For most of us, however, our very worst day would seem like a vacation to somebody who has real problems—like not having enough to eat, or trying to survive a civil war. Locking your keys in the car—or even getting passed over for a promotion—aren’t that bad once you learn to develop perspective. If you’ve mastered the ability to keep your problems in perspective, mark it down as a huge success.”
4. Help is always there
Asking for help will get you ahead. Bradberry says “refusing to ask for help, no matter how much you’re struggling, is a sign of emotional immaturity. Asking for help means that you no longer feel like you have something to prove by being perfect. It shows you aren’t afraid of people discovering your weaknesses and you understand no one succeeds alone.”
5. People have the same insecurities as you, only care what you think
“You only worry about what other people think when you still feel like you have something to prove. Conversely, you know you’ve “made it” when you don’t worry about that anymore—when you’re true to yourself and your principles, and satisfied with your life. You know you’ve made it when you understand that other people’s opinions are just that—opinions. They have no effect on reality. They don’t change who or what you are.”
6. Accept what you can’t change and change what you can.
“There’s a difference between pessimism and practicality.” Bradberry explains, “If there’s a hurricane headed your way, there’s nothing you can do to stop it. But once you accept that the hurricane is coming, you can start working to mitigate its effects. If your company downsizes and you get laid off, every moment you spend in denial just delays whatever is waiting over the horizon. You’re able to move on only when you start exploring your options and making plans to change what you can. Taking responsibility for changing the things you don’t like about your life is one of the biggest indicators of success.”
7. Bring it Together
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