Success is a fluid and hard thing to pin down, since we all define our achievements in different ways.
Nothing can ever be standardised and universal, because we ourselves are multi-faceted and diverse.
Eric Wong, founder of Zikira Properties and of ECX (that’s right!), decides to share some of his nuggets of wisdom with us.
What is success? How to we keep things in perspective? Why is the sky blue?
What is success?
First, he suggests that we consider the fluidity of success and how it’s a definition that is entirely subjective. How do you know when you’ve ‘made it’? Some ideas regarding success include, but are not limited to:
- good relationships (spending time with family, a happy marriage)?
- wealth (economic security, financial freedoms)?
- prestige and reputation (leaving a legacy, fame, being honoured on a large scale)?
- results (losing X amount of weight, scoring 100% in an exam, publishing a book)?
- experiences (flying first class, staying in 6 star hotels)?
Depending on who we are and what we do, it’s pretty clear that we all want different things. Eric reminds us that it is important to remember that your successes cannot be based on somebody else’s.
It’s about your success, not anyone else’s.
Reaping the rewards of your hard work is easy and seems like the ideal. What’s better than wealth and prestige and flying business class on every flight? Or having a number of awards and trophies and bestselling published books under your belt?
While it’s easy to think about the pros of working diligently, Eric urges us to remember that this hard work and relentless commitment often comes at the cost of quality time with loved ones and forgoing your own personal interests.
Therefore, we have to note that it’s all relative to who you are and where your priorities lie.
If you have two kids to care for, you can’t always come home late and take out a giant chunk of your time every day to wine and dine clients. It doesn’t mean that you’re less driven or less successful than someone who may make more money or pull in more clients, even if it’s all too easy to get caught up in the numbers. It just means that you have different standards and sacrifices, and that you have to re-evaluate what your success means.
You’re already halfway there!
Take a step back. Forget how much money your friends are making, or what your child’s best mate got in the HSC, or what kind of car your co-worker drives.
While it’s common to compare and look at others for improvement, Eric tells us that the best way to be motivated is to actually spend time reflecting and being grateful for what you’ve already achieved. You don’t always have to be at the bottom of the ladder, hoping to climb up – perhaps you’re already halfway there.
Don’t compare yourself to people who make three times as much as you, or you’ll find that it quickly turns into a downhill spiral of envy and impatience and despair. Find your place in the world and realise that some people live on $2 a day, and that their ideal of happiness and success is exactly where you might be now.
The finish line is different for everybody. Success is what you make of it.