Success can be a daunting word. It is often associated with the mindset of “making it big” or “climbing up the ladder”. Rarely is it seen as a measure of happiness and self-worth.
Merriam-Webster defines success as a “favorable or desired outcome; also: the attainment of wealth, favor or eminence.’’
Notice that this is a TWO part definition, yet many of us focus on the latter part — the wealth, favor and eminence. However, according to this definition, success is simply achieving a favorable or desired outcome. Whatever that may be. You get to choose what you set as your desired outcome or goal!
Don’t let society dictate what your goals should be and how success is measured for you or your business.
Each of these three Houston business owners and leaders define success in their careers in a radically different way.
Courtney Hill Fertitta — interior designer
Courtney of Courtney Hill Interiors defines her personal success as loving what she does and being happy with the work she continually chooses to do. She believes, “everyone should love what they do,” so for her, happiness is a huge mark of success. Even if she was great at interior design and her business was doing well, but she did not love it, she would not feel successful.
Courtney also emphasized that success is “being able to do this [work] and raise a family at the same time.” In other words, that is one of her favorable or desired outcomes, and if met, it is a success.
Ryan Born — youth minister
Ryan describes success for his career as doing something that has value despite the difficulties of the job.
“No matter what job you take, it’s always going to have challenges. The question is, are the challenges worth waking up every day for?” For him, the most important gauge of success is determining if the job is worth all of the obstacles that it consists of.
This question requires reflecting on what is important to YOU. Each person will have a different response depending on what they believe is worth enduring to reach their end goal.
Ryan’s end goal as a youth minister at First Presbyterian Church is to help foster and instill self-worth into the students he ministers. He feels an obligation to “help [the kids] realize that they’re loved and that their lives have meaning far beyond what they could fathom for themselves”.
Greg Hamill — photographer
Greg of Greg Hamill Photography characterizes success as producing pictures and headshots that accurately represent each person.
So, you can see that his definition directly relates to achieving one of his desired outcomes. Another one of his desired outcomes has to do with the confidence of the person he is photographing.
“I take pride in helping people because getting in front of a camera and lights and everything is intimidating to a lot of people. So, I take pride in being able to get you to relax and have an expression that is appropriate for a business portrait,” Greg expresses.
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These are just three people’s definitions of success that they have adapted for their everyday lives at work. You have the power to define success in your own terms. Remember, it’s about achieving a favorable outcome that you decide, not someone else.
Written by: Intern Julie Phillips