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Success as we all know it
The straight-from-the book definition of success is “the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame.” That’s the meaning of success we all know. It’s all about money and power, right? Wrong! Success is a personal thing. We all have different definitions and in its simplicity, success is the opposite of failure, however, failure is the key to success. Growing up, I’ve always thought I had to be rich and popular to be called successful. Maturity told me otherwise. I’ve come to a conclusion that it cannot be measured in numbers.
The forgotten definition of success
Success is not just a social status involving how prosperous or famous a person is. Being successful defines your achievements and accomplishments in life regardless if it made you rich or powerful. It’s something only you can tell. You cannot limit success in terms of money, education, or popularity. You set your goals and no matter how tiny these are, if they’re significant in your life and you’ve accomplished them, then in that way you’re successful. Most of us have forgotten that. We became blinded by the ideal meaning of success.
Making your success meaningful
If failure is the key to success, then sacrifices make it meaningful. If you want to achieve something, one way or another, you have to make sacrifices. Life is black and white as that. If you want be a successful writer, you have to sacrifice a lot of your time researching and writing, you’ll sacrifice longer sleep hours to beat deadlines. If you want something, you have to pay the price.
Here’s what actual business owners had to sacrifice to become successful:
Managing Director of Studio Digita, Travis Bennett, sacrificed a corporate career with a big team, moved to a new country (twice!) and worked many late nights to build his client base. He had to work 80 to 100 hours per week during the first few months to get the ball rolling.
“Success is being passionate about the work I am spending my time on, having the ability to control my own schedule and build it to fit around my life and my daughter, and having enough cash left over once all the bills are paid to travel, dine and enjoy the finer things in life. Time spent watching your family grow is just as valuable as a growing bank account.”
-Travis Bennett, Studio Digita
Early on, Steve Shriver, President/Founder of Eco Lips, Inc. lived a mediocre life to fuel the growth of his business.
“Success is to have financial freedom while also being free from working in my business.”
-Steve Shriver, Eco Lips
Since Inga Van Riper took Build The Store in 2001, he knew he had to put the company before himself. He was still able to make time for his family but his personal time is close to nothing. His new life revolves around work and family that left him with very little time for dating or having personal relationships.
“Success is having a positive impact on my customers, employees, and my community. My goal is to inspire and to empower each and everyone of them to be successful.”
-Inga Van Riper, Build The Store
Mom-next-door, Jennifer Reich of The Mommy MD Guides, juggles being a single mom and business owner. She often sacrifice sleep to spend more time with her sons and keep the business humming along. She makes up for the loss of sleep by taking good care of herself, proper diet, exercise, and laughing loud and often.
“Success is joy in my heart and happiness in my sons’ eyes.”
-Jennifer Reich, The Mommy MD Guides
Dinner time is six in the evening for Marten Skupien, Controller at Enerpan Insulated Panels, but the relentless pursuit to find better solutions to keep his company budget and financial controls in top shape makes dinner time close to never.
“Success is when your employees are as happy as your clients.”
-Marten Skupien, Enerpan Insulated Panels
Terina Nicole McKinney, Owner and Lead Designer of Jypsea Leathergoods, left a 12-year marriage to a man who didn’t believe in self-employment. She walked away from decent paying jobs and removed herself from circles of people who aren’t as driven.
“Success is freedom. Freedom to choose where I work, when I work, how I work, and with whom. Freedom to take my kid to a show at 4pm instead of being tied to a desk. Freedom to work from home when she has a day off from school instead of scrambling for a sitter. Freedom to work by the beach. Freedom to match my effort with my compensation and have no glass ceilings to stifle me. “
-Terina Nicole McKinney, Jypsea Leathergoods
A hobby is usually done during one’s leisure time, but for Tom Andrews, President of Avanti Custom Home Builders, instead of doing what you want to do, you have to discipline yourself to what needs to be done in order to achieve your goals.
“Success is not just about money and fame. It’s about making a difference.”
-Tom Andrews, Avanti Custom Home Builders
Jonathan Schneider and Richard Grossman, Founders of Road Holland Cycling Apparel, admitted they had to give up their wants and focused their spendings on business needs instead.
“Success is doing something you enjoy and still provide a comfortable life for yourself and your family.”
-Jonathan Schneider and Richard Grossman, Road Holland
Peace Of Mind
Endless decision making and problem solving — it’s truly chaotic inside an entrepreneur’s mind. Chris Bolivar, President of FREE Advertising, sometimes misses not having to do these crucial tasks everyday.
“Success is when you start something life-changing from nothing, and you help other people do the same.”
Business Coach Jennifer Dawn admits she sacrificed her sanity during the early years of growing her first company. She travelled internationally while seven months pregnant, nursed in airports, and worked 36 to 48 hours straight on big projects. She once went to China and was almost sold into slavery.
“Success is running my business from home and still being able to get my six-year-old off the bus. Making my husband breakfast every morning before taking client calls with some of my favorite entrepreneurs running multi-million dollar businesses. Being interviewed for the radio in my pajamas. Success on MY terms and not those of the world.”
-Jennifer Dawn, Jennifer Dawn Coaching
John Grant, Co-owner of Captura sacrificed a lot of time that could have been spent with family and friends. Fast food takeouts became a habit and exercising never seemed to happen.
“Success is being able to wake up every morning and get better at the things you love. I have a tattoo on my arm which is the Japanese symbol for kaizen meaning continuous improvement — it’s how I live everyday.”
-John Grant, Captura
Success comes with a hefty price. It’s just goes down to how much. The question now is, what are you willing to sacrifice to be successful?