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Measuring Success In Our Relationships
The best success is not public or measured in accolades because, quite frankly, that is common. And common success is less valuable than personal success measured by personal challenges and personal goals met. This is never more obvious than it is when people measure their relationship success and failures. For instance….
Divorce is a marriage that fails, but that’s just on the surface. Dig deeper and you’ll be able to look at why you married and what you knew about yourself, or didn’t know about yourself, that led you to choose and accept a life relationship that didn’t last. For instance, did you use someone else’s measure of success, say, a parent’s timeline, or a parent’s ideas of who you were and what you needed — instead of a more truthful, personal version? Divorce is an opportunity to learn more about who you are and the choices you make, so that you can take a step closer to a personal success. In fact, for many, divorce is a necessary step in that journey towards success.
Dating may seem like a string of failed relationships, but the reality is that it’s an opportunity to get to know yourself through the choices you make. If you keep choosing the same person, or the same type of person, or if you keep behaving in the same way that brings you the same results, rather than throw up your hands and throw in the the towel, use the failed dates to learn more about who you are and what you really need. Self knowledge is one of the best ways to achieve success, and when dates fail, you get to process why they failed and what your part in their failure was. A string of failed dates or a year — or even a decade of failed dates — can be stepping stones towards relationship success, if you choose to use them.
Your perspective is an important tool in building success. When you see what you think you want — whether it’s a relationship or a marriage that someone else has, or a man or woman who seems perfect — use that feeling of admiration, jealousy, or drive, as a cue to learn that something inside you resonates with the image or the behavior you see. Examine your feelings, don’t simply use them as your sole guide. Use them as a cue to hone your journey towards success. For instance, you may see Donald Trump and want his life because he’s wealthy, happily married and in your eyes, successful. But examine more deeply who he is — his bankruptcy, his divorces, his journey — and check yourself. Is what you really admire on the surface? Or is it the ability to overcome obstacles and forge a path in spite of them, or because of them? The more you know about what it is you think you want, the more you can learn the specifics of what success is for you. It isn’t always what you think it is, or the cover on the book — it’s specific to who you are.