Sunday, 3 January 2016

Success Is Subjective


Image Credit - www.benwalkerphotography.com

I've started 2016 feeling philosophical.
I don't like NYE and never have - I love Christmas and really hate how quickly it passes, so usually by the time January starts I start getting into a slump.  Initially, I feel positive for the start of a fresh new year, but that feeling usually fades quite swiftly and I'm left feeling deflated and unmotivated.
This year though, I can safely say I had one of the best New Year's Eve's I've ever had, and starting 2016 feeling happy and jolly might be contributing to my frame of mind.

Lately I've been giving a lot of thought to success, and what it means to be successful.
What does success actually mean? I think it differs from person to person.
I spend a lot of time scrolling through Facebook feeling a heaviness in my heart that I don't have what others perceive as the perfect life. I'm not married, or even engaged. I don't own my own home, nor do I have children. With that in mind, it's easy to feel that those who have are successful, while I'm a massive failure. 

A few weeks ago I was visiting a friend and I heard this old chestnut from her mother:
"so when's it your turn then? You're not getting any younger you know"...I mumbled something about focusing on work at the moment and got the reply "oh, you're definitely a career girl then"
But in all honesty, I don't know WHAT I am.

School holds very bitter-sweet memories for me. I didn't enjoy the majority of it, yet while on the one hand it feels like another lifetime, in other ways it feels like hardly any time has passed and it scares me at how quickly we're all getting older.
I look at old school friends who are engaged/married, now have children, or live miles away from the area we grew up in and I think "they must have it all. I've failed at life".

But I don't think that's true. I don't think I have failed.

Sure, there are some things I wish were different, I can't pretend I haven't always been that girl who's fantasised about her wedding day, because quite frankly I have. And I also can't pretend that I haven't thought "when is it going to be my turn?" as I've watched my friends all slowly get married, and put deposits down on houses, or make the decision to start families.

But success is subjective, and all I want is happiness. 
If you're not happy, what's the point?
So does the fact that although sometimes I let my thoughts get on top of me and I feel I've achieved nothing, isn't the fact that overall I'm pretty happy a sign of personal success?
I think so.

I have a good job (although I'd be lying if I said it was a passion) that I worked hard to get, and feel I'm pretty good at.
I have a loving family.
I have a handful of good, loyal friends who are always there for me with advice and/or cocktails.
I have the freedom to go on 2/3 holidays a year.
I have the freedom to go out for a late breakfast, or meet up for lunch and a gossip, or jump in the car and go and visit a friend whenever I want.
And all of those things make me happy.

So really - being loved and having people to love, having a wealth of experiences in front and behind me, and having the means to be able to treat myself to a new dress, or a spontaneous city break, or my millionth candle is something to feel grateful for.

So if like me, sometimes you feel like a massive let-down, remember that success is subjective, and what's important to some, isn't necessarily important to others. In fact, maybe others aren't living this fairytale you imagine they are and instead are wishing for what YOU have?
So rather than wasting every day working towards 'something' you feel you should do, instead make sure you're spending your days feeling good about yourself and enjoying life, because ultimately:




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18 comments

  1. Great post, lady. Success definitely is subjective. I live in Berlin, where no one in their 20s or 30s or even 40s are really married (okay that's a lie, but it's definitely super normal to be single here!) but come from a small southern town in the US where people think success means marriage and kids. I do want those things one day, but not right now. Plus, so many people get into marriages and have kids thinking it's what they want and need, only to end up unhappy later.

    Success should not also be measured by paychecks or job titles. In the end to me, success is about being a good people, enriching the lives of others and being proud of the person you are each day.

    Glad to hear you have a lovely new years!

    Rae | Love from Berlin

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    1. Thanks Rae, that's how I look at it too, what impact you make on others lives and just feeling happy in yourself.

      Lucy x

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  2. Success is 100% subjective. How boring would it be if we all did everything at the exact same moment in life? We'd hate knowing exactly what's going to happen. Success is something we can only define ourselves, and no one else has the right to comment on how 'badly' we're doing. For some, just making it through the day is a massive success. It sounds to me that you're doing pretty amazingly anyway!

    Glad you had a good new years too xxx

    Sam // Samantha Betteridge

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    1. Thanks Sam, some days it doesn't feel like I'm doing amazingly, but then I shake myself and remember how fortunate I am.

      Lucy x

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  3. I'm only 18 so I've yet to feel as if I've failed at life, but I've definitely been on the road of thinking that I am failing life miserably. I've definitely changed my perspective on this now, though, that success is a subjective state of mind and that success is defined in one's own terms.

    With that, Lucy, I wish you all the success in life -- may you be happy and healthy and fruitful and content! I'm glad to hear you rang in the New Year's wonderfully, too!

    Cheers!

    May | THE MAYDEN | bloglovin'

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    1. Thanks May, I hope this year brings you everything you hope for!

      Lucy x

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  4. I completely agree with you! I've had the same thought for the last couple of weeks. Especially when friends have their 'dreamjob' and I am not even close to that yet. But I am happy, and I am working on amazing things; and that's success!
    Loved reading this!
    WritingMonique

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    1. Thanks Monique, I'm glad you're happy, as you say thats what success is really all about.

      Lucy x

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  5. I don't like NYE all that much either but I like the new year. 2016, or any year for that matter, will always be philosophical and crazy. And thinking about success is one of those crazy things. Success is subjective. In many ways, I succeeded and I failed and for others, I succeeded in their failures and failed in their successes.

    Life is a fickle thing, and we're always defined by our success. Which is difficult when success is subjective. Love this post <3

    xx Bash | Hey Bash | bloglovin'

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    1. Thanks Bash, totally agree with you, success is a funny old thing.

      Lucy x

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  6. Love the quotes! Amazing, insightful blog post. Happy 2016. xx

    Love,
    Hannie Arden from Missing Wanderer.

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    1. Thanks Hannie, happy 2016 to you too.

      Lucy x

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  7. Such a great post Lucy! It's SO SO important not to compare your success to anyone else's as you never know the journey they've been on. xxx



    we are dannah | lifestyle blog

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    1. Thanks Hannah, thats definitely true!

      Lucy x

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  8. I love how honest this post was, I read every single word. Success is definitely subjective. And because people only post the great things on Facebook, scrolling through will always have the tendency to make one question their own success. We just have to learn to focus on ourselves and what makes us happy without comparing ourselves to others I guess.

    www.jeannechristinemarie.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks Jeanne, I think its a way a lot of us are feeling and social media doesn't help.

      Lucy x

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  9. Thank you for this post. I am feeling almost exactly all the same things!! I have been to so,so many weddings lately, my facebook feed is filled with friends having babies and etc and yes sometimes I feel let down but I also remember that I have a lot other good things going for me, and I also remember that getting married, having kids and etc.. does not and should not define you as a person! thanks for sharing all your thoughts!

    lifeisashoe

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    1. Thanks, I feel exactly the same way as you! At the end of the day I firmly believe life is a journey and things are meant to happen this way.

      Lucy x

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