THE TEN MOST COMMON MYTHS ABOUT SUCCESS:
1. It will look exactly the way you fantasized success would look like. Every i dotted, every t crossed. Every bill up to date, every day filled with gratifying accomplishments and win after win.
Fact: Success won’t necessarily look like a solution to your problems. It usually presents as simply a new set of challenges to be addressed in place of your old challenges. Instead of trying to attain a state of perfection in which all problems are solved, aim to learn from every challenge and failure, breaking old patterns and moving your business and skills forwards and upwards.
2. It will not be stressful, but rather all our stress will go away because of it.
Every set of challenges brings stress as we consider and imagine the possible negative consequences of our actions and inactions, weighing those with the benefits. No initiative can break new ground without our growing into each situation with courage and common sense. Self-care and rest are imperative for stress management. We look after ourselves first, then look after our business. Entrepreneurship is not a cure for stress and workaholism, and neither are it’s fruits. Rather, it’s a classroom where we learn to balance outside interest with self-interest.
3. You won’t make mistakes or take risks that go badly.
You will. Learn from them, take responsibility for them, make good, and move on.
4. Everyone will love both you and everything you do, and broadcast your success to others without a trace of envy or malice.
They won’t. Do it anyway.
5. Most people will notice your little wins, and maybe even comment on them with occasional supportive hurrahs.
They won’t. Do it anyway.
6. Someone will notice. Just a little bit.
Maybe, but don’t count on it. Do it anyway.
7. You won’t care if no one notices you and what you’re doing.
You will care. It will hurt and you will be discouraged, angry and want to give up. Don’t.
8. You will have a really big pile of money.
Let’s hope so. But piles of money do not solve problems. They simply bring different ones.
9. Money will inevitably follow because you’re doing what you love, without your caring if it does or not because of your perpetual state of ecstatic bliss at being able to work at what you enjoy despite the long hours, exhausting effort and largely invisible state in which you accomplish small miracles on a daily basis.
Maybe. Probably not, but perhaps. Probably eventually. In any case, just keep going. Wherever “there” is for you, head for that. Overshoot a little, even. It can’t hurt.
10. Success is the point.
Where is this “there” you keep saying you’ll arrive at one day? What’s your goal – do you know what or where it is? What does success actually look like for you? Are you certain you’re not aiming for someone else’s picture of it? How will you know you’ve achieved it? Perhaps you already have? Maybe being on the way is the way?
So many of us wallow in discontent in our endeavors simply because we don’t have a clear definition of success which rings true for us. Once we have defined our motives, run a reality check on our values and expectations and put some clever strategies in place to protect our resources and our energies, we can begin to move more steadily along the plane of progress. Success may be less a place to arrive at than it is a way of being in where and what we have and are now. Success is attitude rather than altitude. Aim high, but carry snacks and take time to enjoy the view.