The Meaning of Success

meaning of success

The meaning of success that I hear repeated over and over again is the one by Earl Nightingale. "Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal."

I like this definition of success. It implies that success is a journey, a progressive realization. The worthy ideal is the goal. And, success is realized as you progress towards that goal.

What are your worthy ideals? Have you set any SMART goals for ? How about...

  • I run my first marathon on 4/10.
  • I achieve a healthy and fit weight of 165 pounds on 4/10.
  • I earn $5000 passive income by the end of the first quarter, 3/31.
  • I spend quality time with my family every Saturday evening between 5-7 pm.
  • I meditate everyday for 1 hour at 5 am.

Shoot for the Moon

If there is one thing I have learned, it is that we should always shoot for the moon. One of the popular quotes on success by Brian Littrell is:

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.

Really, where's the fun in setting low goals, or even goals that you know you can reach easily? Growth happens when you are pushed out of your comfort zone. When you adjust and overcome those obstacles on your way to your goal, that is the meaning of success.

Les Brown, a powerful motivational speaker elaborates on goals. He describes that many of us fail not because we set our goals too high and don't achieve them, but because we set them too low and hit them.

Focus on your goal. Take daily action towards your goal. Even if you don't know what to do, do something, anything, in the direction of your goal.

  • Have you used our goal setting worksheet?
  • Is there someone you know who has accomplished what you want so can you model what they did?
  • Can you read a book about how to do it?
  • Can you take a course?
  • How about hiring a personal coach?

A Journey of Success

I'll give you a personal story. Before, I was never a runner. I would only run when playing basketball, but I never thought I could run longer than 1 mile.

A few years ago, I trained for my first 1/2 marathon. Once I completed a few of those, I knew it wasn't a worthy ideal for me anymore. So, as I am writing this article, my wife and I are training for our 1st full marathon.

What we have been learning along the way have been great: how to reserve energy, how to train, the mindset that is required, and so much more. That is the meaning of success. We progress along the way to reach our goal.

In all honesty, the journey leading up to this great goal is as enjoyable, if not more, than the race itself.

Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal. It's not going to happen overnight. It may not happen next month or next year. It may take a single step or even a marathon of steps.

Celebrate your achievements along the way towards the realization of your goals. Enjoy the journey as you define your own meaning of success.

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