What is success? What makes you happy? Are they the same thing?

C’mon, let’s get some feedback on this, post some comments, and let’s engage. What is important to you? What do you call success?

Are you on a 6 figure salary?
Are you overdrawn?
Do you have a nice car and house?
A job you like or hate?
Do you have a good life with your family, partner or children?
Do you laugh a lot?
Are you single?
Are you lonely?

To you, how many of these questions and their answers best describes to you what success means? And what about being happy? Do you become happy after success or does being successful make you happy?

For me, they are kind of tenuously linked. Generally I’d consider myself to be a happy person. Of late, that has changed. I’m a bit subdued, a bit peeved off. Yes, I am overdrawn, yes I don’t earn enough, and these are all contributing factors.

They are not the main reasons I don’t deem myself to be happy or successful though, or whatever order of preference you wish to put them in. The main reasons for my subdued nature are my lack of fulfilment, achievement, and generally, reaching my potential, in anything I wish to do.

Now you may shout from the rooftops of your gated private road residence that the only person I can hold responsible for all this is myself. And, I hear you, loud and clear. Am I allowed to disagree though, just slightly?

Our lives are a mixture of luck, chance, childhood, ruthlessness, sheer determination, hard work, toil, being in the right place at the right time, and knowing the right people. Also having good contacts, colleagues, and friends all play their part.

Indeed, studies have shown that your chance of success can be linked to whether you smile a lot, have many friends, are attractive, and wear bright clothes. Research show that those that keep friends from school and add to that circle of friends rather than deplete it, go on to achieve more than those who don’t.

Now, which of any of the above applies to you? Which one of these would you say is your forte? I reckon if you are successful, depending on how you define it, then I’m going to guess that most of these things can be applied to you. Am I right?

That’s good, I am genuinely pleased for you and I know I could learn a lot from you, but you must understand, it is difficult for me. Why?

Well, principally and fundamentally, it is because I’m a bit of an ar*e. They say you can make your own luck, which I do agree with. I guess, and I’m going out on a limb here, being an ar*e i generally a drawback. Not finishing things I start, not having the conviction to see anything through, not having confidence, being quite lazy, and scorning any outstretched arm of assistance from anyone probably hasn’t helped in my quest? Could I be right? Well thanks, you’ve helped a lot.

I have many problems with how others achieve success, what it is, and my own frugal attempts at it. As an example, take a professional footballer. 140 thousand pounds a week, an incredible lifestyle and doing what they enjoy for a living. Is this successful? Ummmmm, I guess so. Kind of a no brainer really isn’t it? But are they happy? Haha. As somebody famous once said, ‘It is easier being sad with lots of money around.’

I do agree with this, but there are numerous other factors to consider. Being lonely makes a huge difference to being happy. Lots of money can make you happy but if there is no one to share it with, is there a point to having it? And, furthermore, you can be happy sharing a sunset with someone you are totally in love with, and that is free, so how does money assist success there?

Another very important thing that is overlooked is health. You can have all the money in the world, and you can be successful, but once your health deteriorates it doesn’t mean much at all. Sure, wealth can prolong your health and even contribute to retrieving it should it start to go, but it can only go so far. The rest is nature and god’s will, whatever that may be.

Humour, making others laugh, others laughing with you, and occasionally at you, may not be defined as success but this can certainly make you happy. So is there a clear definition?

I guess I should just look in a dictionary.

The thing is though; I’m fussy about how I would be successful. I wouldn’t like to be dishonest.

And whilst I’m going off no clear discernible tangent, may I throw in the Lottery or Euro Millions? A win here would be great wouldn’t it? Would it make you happy or successful, both or neither? I know there are plenty in business who succeed by ruthless, unscrupulous means, but nonetheless, I wouldn’t like to cheat at obtaining success. I’d much rather something I did made me successful rather than it just landed in my lap.

Success though, can be transparent and fickle, however tangible.

Take our friend the footballer, can his salary be justified? Damien Hirst is worth over 200 million. Is he an artist? I don’t think so. I think he is just a very clever businessman. He has property and all sorts, a multitude of investments. He is no doubt successful. To me though, he is very very lucky. And so are the Cheeky Girls. Haha.

Am I blurring fame with success? I guess I could be. Come on everyone, think big. Actually, I think I am trying to gauge success in terms you might agree with and understand.

Really though, I reckon if you are earning just enough, if you live in a property you own, or are trying to, if you have a wife or husband or boy or girlfriend that you love and who loves you. If you have children that love, adore and respect you, which more often than not have smiles on their faces. If you generally have a smile on your face, have a good trustworthy circle of friends. And if you have a job you like, and are good at, then I think you are doing pretty darn well. So well done, good for you, give yourself a pat on the back. And tell me, what your secret is. Oh no, have I already mentioned it?

Mark Scotchford © 25/08/2014

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About markious72

Here I wish to let my strange and vivid imagination and opinions run wild. I do hope you like what you read. I would love to be a writer, I won't pretend otherwise. Although it is only in the last couple of years that I have realised it. I guess if it meant to happen it will. Happy reading, happier writing. :-)
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