career goals

How Society Views Success

When you think of the word success, what comes to mind for you? Is it money, is it a great career, is it fulfilment?

Success is defined as “the purposeful achievement of a desired goal, ”, therefore becoming a successful person should really mean accomplishing a desired objective. But society has quietly written a different definition of success, one where becoming successful means “having achieved fame, wealth, or social status”.

People who seem to have it all, but are privately miserable are everywhere; people who earn more money than the majority of people can imagine but do little more than whine; people who have high-status jobs and all the perks that go along with them but who are still blatantly depressed, resentful, and unfulfilled. You have interacted with them. You have heard what they have to say, and you are aware that having all the money in the world, all the status symbols and extravagances they own, and even gaining more power and attention have not made them happier.

Everywhere you look, there are supposedly successful but deeply dissatisfied people. You may have attempted to give them advice and support while also listening to them complain endlessly about how nothing ever works out for them and how life is somehow crueller to them than it is to everyone else. Perhaps you are one of these people incognito.

There is a significant distinction between accomplishments and success.  Many people are highly accomplished.  They go on to develop enviable careers, landing highly sought-after roles and pulling in hefty salaries.  These are only a few examples of society’s ideology around career success.  But these elements all represent one’s achievements and accomplishments.  The problem is accomplishments alone don’t necessarily guarantee success

Career success involves achieving a reasonable level of financial stability while doing work you enjoy, along with being happy and fulfilled with both your life and career choices.   Career success is diminished if you love your job but do not achieve financial independence from it, or if you get paid well but do not enjoy your chosen career field. True career success requires a combination of both.

Meaningful career success goes beyond money and titles.  People who have obtained it understand that you must also experience peace and joy for it to really matter.  If you have a well-paid dream career but the tasks and responsibilities cause you to feel unhappy or unfulfilled, you won’t feel successful.  On the flip side, if you love your job and draw fulfilment from it, but it doesn’t meet your financial necessities, you won’t feel successful either.  Hence, success really should be re-defined as a balancing act of stability, fulfilment and joy.

Setting good career goals is a critical step towards achieving professional success. If you are still feeling stuck unpacking your choices, book a FREE CALL HERE with one of our career consultants and we’ll help you map out your next steps!

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