Success, Part 2: What Are Your FEELINGS About Success?

Creative/ Planning: the 1st step toward success/ Success/ Thinking

I think most people’s initial reaction to this question would be “I like it, I love it, I want some more of it!”, “I am working on being more successful!” and “I feel great about it!”

But there are a lot of folks out there who are UNCOMFORTABLE with success.

Wait, what?  Success is supposed to be a good thing! Why would someone be uncomfortable with doing good stuff, and making good money doing it?

Here’s the deal…or my take on it:

  1. We are here to own our vision of success.
  2. We are here to own our version of happiness.
  3. We are here to share our success, and to help others succeed.

Let’s talk this over.

We’ve been conditioned believe that you have to be selfish to be successful.

So, I am calling bullshit on this selfish business.

  • If we aren’t taking care of ourselves, we can’t take care of anyone else. This is not selfish; it’s smart!
  • The world celebrates taking care of our health, our families, our homes and our cars; but taking care of our business, and making money, are often seen as selfish. This kind of thinking is toxic to success. Being successful helps enable us to take even better care of these things.
  • When we’re taking care of our needs by defining  our vision of success, we’re taking care of ourselves, taking responsibility for our business, and ultimately, taking charge of how happy and fulfilled we feel.

As creatives, we have a convoluted relationship with success, and with the possibility of being a sellout.

I am also calling bullshit on this sellout business.

  • Success and creativity may sometimes feel like oil and water. On one hand, we don’t want to sell out, and on the other hand, we don’t want to settle for mediocre. You wouldn’t be here reading this if mediocrity was your goal. Just in case, though—if mediocrity is your goal, then you really are in the wrong place.
  • We can’t control what other people think. If someone thinks you’re a sellout because you’re successful, so what? We can only control our four walls and how we react to what other people think and do. Other people’s negativity doesn’t belong to us, it belongs to them—let them deal with it. I’m sure there are things you’ll never do with your creative business, because they don’t jive with your values and your with your ideas about what fulfills you. Let those things guide you, instead of what others think. We need to worry about ourselves. (So do they, but that’s a whole different thing.)

We feel guilty if we believe “I AM ENOUGH” and therefore not deserving of success.

I’m calling bullshit on feeling guilty.

  • Believing in ourselves, feeling proud, and feeling successful can be uncomfortable when we’re surrounded by people who are less-than thrilled with their own lives. Should you really surround yourself with that kind of negativity? Just let me give you a hint: NO. We should surround ourselves with people who are doing the things we’re doing, and people who inspire us to do more. Folks who are successful own the idea that they are enough.

We remember all times someone said, “You can’t.” And then we started believing it.

I’m calling BULLSHIT on this too.

  • BELIEVING in yourself is the first step in your journey toward success. It’s human nature to just do what we know, even when it isn’t working. If we’re not changing it up, it’s probably due to fear—fear of reliving past failures, fear of someone saying “I told you so”, or fear of the unknown.
  • The idea of success can be scary for a number of reasons. Perhaps you come from a family that valued hard work over a hefty savings account, so the idea of aspiring to have some cash in the bank might feel like you’re giving your family the finger. Or maybe you were once successful, but then flopped, so you’re scared of failing again. Remember that failure is a stepping stone to succeeding. We only fail when failure makes us stop trying.
  • When we begin to believe negative things people say about us, it begins to corrode our “can do” attitude. Their negativity becomes part of our internal script. Should you really surround yourself with that kind of negativity? Let me give you a hint: NO. You should surround yourself with people who are successful—people you can learn from.

Are you starting to see a trend?  All of those things are bullshit.

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