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Success - we all read about it, hear it on the news, and label some ... as ... The world’s concept is believed to be related to the amount of money a person earns, the size and locat

Success - we all read about it, hear it on the news, and label some individuals as “successful.” The world’s concept is believed to be related to the amount of money a person earns, the size and location of his/her house, and the vehicles they drive. If you vacation in a far-off land, you are successful. If you wear designer clothes and dine or entertain at renowned restaurants you are successful.

There are many definitions for success, almost as many as there are individuals. Your idea of success may not be mine and vice versa. I may not be concerned with what I drive and do not base this on success. You, however, might take great care in who shops at what store in order to attain the label of success. Whatever your criteria is for placing someone, including yourself, on a preferred list of successful individuals, is based in part on what is of value to you. If you value home location, then successful people live in certain areas. There are those that feel that opulent spending signifies status in the honor rolls of life. Who is correct and what assumption is accurate?

None of them are and yet they all are. No matter what you base the concept of successful living on, only the individual involved can attest to the fact that they feel successful. There is an old saying that “only true success will lull you to sleep at night.” True success is basically living up to your potential and fulfilling life goals and expectations that you have set for yourself. You work hard to make your dreams come true, your family is well taken care of so you can rest at night. Yet, there are those who do not have financial comfort, yet make do with what they have and share their love and attributes with their family and friends. Both individuals are successful. They have done what is expected of them and beyond.

There are no set steps you must take to reach success. There are just basic issues to overcome and control. These are few and simple. You must believe in what you do, be willing to share your knowledge and expertise with others, and acknowledge that others have the same rights to success as you do.

Simple, yes, easy-no. If you can laugh at your own mistakes, but not at those of others, and if you fail at anything, but can find the strength to get back up, then you are on the road to success. If an elderly person holds your respect, and a child makes you believe in life itself, then you are successful. If you shake the hand of an individual down on his luck as warmly as you do that of a statesman, then you are successful.

Its all in where your heart is and if you have the courage to follow it. You don’t have to be exceptionally intelligent, nor endowed with great beauty or strength, you just have to be comfortable in being you. If someone made a movie of your life, featuring your motives, methods, and yes, even madness, would you cry, laugh, or applaud? Would you want to stand next in line to you, and more importantly, are you at ease when you are alone with you?

Success is in essence immeasurable. Yet, others lay a yardstick to it day after day. Your life will decide your success, and your own peace of mind will insure it. So, let each day be a step toward hearing, “A job well done,” when all the cards are on the table, and there is no more playing time. Success - my toast to you!
©Arleen M. Kaptur 2002 June

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Arleen Kaptur has written numerous articles, cookbooks, motivational booklets, and the novel: SEARCHING FOR AUSTIN JAMES

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