What is Success and What is Keeping You From Having Success?

I just saw this article on my twitter feed and it caught my eye.

The article opens with a mention of “negative self talk” and about the “disempowering” factors that get us down and hold us back. I’m very interested in these factors, and as to “why” those disempowering thoughts happen.

That being said, in this post, we’ll look one of the points they bring up, the point of “lack of vision”, we’ll leave the points 2-3-4 for now, as I think lack of vision is the basis.

Lack of Vision

“We tend to get what we focus on, and what we don’t focus on, we don’t even come close to”.  

You cannot expect success if you don’t know what success looks like.” 

In other words, success is very personalized and invidualized. So really, the first step is to define what “success” is to you. Think of a time in your life where you were focused, and where you had success (on your own terms). What was that definition of success? And then what did you do to achieve it?

I know for myself, I can think of 3 examples right off the top of my mind:

  1. Olympic games: I just decided one day that I am capable to going to the Olympic Games. Before that I thought it was out of reach, that I was too “small time” to go. And really it was a one second decision “I am going. period” From that point, I didn’t not stop until I was taken as part of the team. I went to the Canadian Olympic Committee offices in person, I talked to people who had been in the games, and I had a singular focus until they took me. Of course, it helped because I spoke Russian, but the starting point was to have that objective and that focus.
  2. Learning Russian:  I knew I wanted it to connect and converse with people. So when I was in Moscow in 2004-2005, I gave myself an objective of being able to converse fluently in Russian. I found out that If I knew 2000 words that I would be fluent. I also knew that I needed Russian Grammar. So once I knew my “vision” or my “objective” it was easier to get it done. I read 1 hour of grammar a day, and each morning, I did “drills” with my friend Janick, and we learned 10-15 new words a day. In the afternoon, I would go out on the streets of Moscow to meet people and test out my new knowledge. And the last step was “complete immersion” by doing the Transsiberean railway for a month. 10 months later, I was fluent in Russian and proud to say that I still am.
  3. Sailing (ongoing): This is more of a long term goal, but my current vision is to sail across oceans on my own boat. In order to achieve this, I know there are many steps along the way. So I have already taken the first steps : sail in Charlottetown harbour, do some sailing courses (I’ve done 3 now). And I am geared up for more sailing this Summer, including some “blue water” sailing, i.e. a longer haul, multi-day sailing trip, and that includes sailing with others. And really, regardless of whether or not I actually sail my own boat across oceans, I feel successful and fulfilled when I focus on sailing and learn how to become a better sailor.

What are examples that you’ve shown vision? And clear focus? Share in comments please! 

In a future post, I’ll discuss “What is Success for me today?” and I would like to hear you on that later too.

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