On Success…

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I had drafted a blog post sometime ago, in it I mentioned that I had read somewhere that each person should strive to do better / be better than their parents. And at the time I had felt that I was not in a better place than my parents were at my age.

By 30 they were married, had had me, their first child and were well established in their respective fields. I’m not sure that they struggled to make ends meet each month, or whether there were times when they had to borrow money from their parents just to make it to the next payday,both of which I have periodically had to do.

It might have just been a case of birthday blues, but I really didn’t feel like I’ve accomplished much in the 3 decades I’ve been in existence. I felt really low.

On my birthday I started to think about it really. So what I’m not married or even in any relationship, I have other the years learnt and grown from relationships in the past. So what I’m not thriving in my career, I have come to grips with the fact that I’m not where I should be, and though I don’t know exactly how I’m going to switch careers, I’m so determined not to stay where I’m at.

Success is subjective. It might mean big houses, a car for every day of the week, lots of money in the bank for some. But I think I need to focus on my personal definition of success, and not compare myself with others. Things were very different back when my parents were 30, it’s not fair on myself to compare with their accomplishments.

So success to me is getting to that point where I’m okay with who I am. I’ve always had a hard time loving myself for who I am. I always want to be different, and while growth and change is great, it’s an awful feeling not liking who you are at the moment. Success means not having to worry about making it to the next pay day, having freedom from financial stresses. It means waking up each morning excited by what the day holds in store, not dreading the 9-5 hours. Success means doing something I’m passionate about, something that adds value to my life as well as to others’. Success means being honest with friends and family I am close to, it means being comfortable with who I am and knowing that persons I hold dear love me regardless of whether I am who they would like me to be.

I think it’s important to establish what success means, before getting caught up in society’s definition and realising all too late that you’re not happy with your “success”.

Socially Speaking

I have a confession. I am not the most social person dare I say antisocial. But the fact is I don’t live on a deserted island or in a vacuum so social interaction (particularly given what I do for a living) is inevitable.

A few weeks ago I went out for drinks with a guy. It was our first time meeting and for some reason talking with him sparked the idea for this post and the thoughts therein.

There wasn’t really that special grade of romantic chemistry between us, but we did have a good time talking and getting to know each other. He’s different. Different in a way I can’t put into words, but what I liked most about him was how unapologetic he was about it. Given the fact that it was our first time meeting, people usually dip their toe in first, test the waters, they don’t show you all of themselves, and that can be a good thing I guess. You don’t want to scare people off. But he was very bare, open and upfront, but not in an aggressive sort of way.

I got home that evening and something lingered. The thought that I should try to be more like him. More honest and upfront about who I am when meeting and interacting with people and maybe not try to mold my personality to suit whoever I’m with so much.

I had totally forgotten about all this until today when I was in yet another social situation on a professional level, and I caught myself wondering what makes people gravitate towards one person and not another. It was just one of those pivotal moments where I found myself really studying the situation to try to figure out what draws people to this person, what can I learn from her, what can I emulate?

The point here is that with any social interaction there’s always the opportunity to learn something, there’s always something to take away, an opportunity to grow and improve. Whether the interaction leaves me feeling good or not, there’s always opportunity to learn something. So whenever I’m in social situations from now on I’m going to really be attentive and take note of those characteristics of others that I’d like to see in myself. Try to hone those characteristics and make them my own.

2012 Bucket List

I took a cue from The Better Man Project’s Bucket List for 2012 and made one of my own. Used my goals for 2012 to inspire these bucket list activities. I’m excited to start accomplishing them and crossing them off my list!

Here they are in random order (as I thought them up):

BUCKET LIST 2012

1. Start an herb garden

2. Complete Insanity challenge

3. Complete a Body Rock TV challenge

4. Complete P90X challenge

5. Participate in the Pinehill Dairy Fun Walk

6. Write an article for Caribbean Beach News Magazine

7. Read at least 6 books

8. Get at least 3 clients for Social Media Business

9. Have at least 5 freelance writing clients

10. Publish Dining Guide Magazine on a regular schedule

11. Make manicures and pedicures a habit

12. Wear makeup regularly

13. Drink 4 litres of water daily

14. Keep a daily gratitude book

15. Try one new recipe each week for Slice o’ Paradise blog

16. Throw a party/get together at apartment

17. Join St. Lucia Animal Protection Society (SLAPS)

18. Complete some form of training/degree in marketing field

19. Get more indoor plants

20. Start an IRA

21. Start a Saving for a Home

22. Have the equivalent of 6 months rent in savings

23. Update wardrobe

24. Practice Paleo eating

25. Travel to a country I’ve never been to before

26. Fun gym aerobics classes

27. Climb a mountain

28. Floss everyday for at least a month

29. Try out a watersport

30. Accomplish things in idea book

31. Find perfect picture for wall

32. Get speakers

33. Paint one painting

34. Create homemade hair pomade

35. Find a nifty creative way to save important documents

36. Organise a girls’ lime each month

37. Finish read and put “All the Rules” into practice

38. Reconnect with Anna and Maya

39. In March start The 19 Photo Project

40. Start a photo blog with photo challenges each month

41. One blog post per week

42. Perform 5 minute plank

43. Get health check up

44. Get dental check up

45. Lose 35% body weight

46. Complete ChaLean Extreme

47. Find some snazzy way to pay homage to the end of my 20s

48. Gather all my poems into one book. Start writing again.

49. Watch the sun rise and the sun set on the same day, with the same person.