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The Importance of Defining Success and Exploring Your Values

by Ashley on April 2, 2012 · 0 comments

When I used think about the word “success”, I imagined business suits, slicked back hair, and high-rise buildings. I imagined myself working a desk-job feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, and driven by money. I imagined having little time for the things and the people I enjoy. It made me feel sick to my stomach and want to crawl into a hole to hide from this miserable society-induced standard of what I “need”.

Defining Success and What It Means to Me

I’ve known for a long time that I don’t want a “successful” life. I want a Super Awesome Life.

Then I realized I could create my own definition of success, just for me! I don’t have to follow the rules, just because everyone says so. I can create a life that I love. Now, when I think about success, I imagine spending time with my friends and family. I imagine a job that makes me excited to wake up each morning. I imagine reading books on patio, traveling to Paris and Rome and Australia, heartfelt conversations with my favorite people, and afternoons at playgrounds.  I imagine living my life on my own terms.

Choosing My Core Values

One of the most helpful ways of creating my personal definition of successs was choosing my core values. My values are what inform my choices and guide me toward the life I want, the life where I feel fulfilled, challenged, and successful.

Success for me is living Authenticity, Connection, Exploration, Freedom, Health, Love, and Play.

Authenticity –  Learning to trust myself (and be myself) regardless of what other people think.

Connection – Growing and maintaining deep and meaningful relationships, talking about “real” things, being open and honest.

Exploration – New experiences, learning and growing, visiting new places and trying new things.

Freedom – Making my own decisions about how I spend my time and who I spend my time with.

Health – Conscious food choices, regular exercise, relaxation, meditation, and sleep.

Love – Commitment, support, honesty, compassion, trust and understanding.

Play – Not taking life to seriously and never forgetting to laugh and have fun.

Guilt-free and Loving Life

Now that I recognize my values, I have so much more clarity and a real picture of what I want my life to look like. I don’t feel guilty for not wanting “success” because I have defined what success means for me. My values are the lights guiding me forward toward the life I want to live, a super awesome life.

I’d love to hear how you define success. What are your core values?

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