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What is success,

Recently I’ve been reading over and over what is life about, what makes it a success and it got me thinking. If my voice was heard on the subject would people actually listen? Can I even define success and life?

I guess I need to define success first. To me success is having a good life, a life worth living where I contribute and I’m not just a spectator. To me life is a must play game, one where ultimately we share of ourselves and in the process perhaps contribute to enrich the game.

Now what is life about?

To me it’s about surrounding yourself with people who care for you and you them. It’s about the personal connections with people whom you trust. It’s about having those you wish to share moments of pain and joy equally with. People you can’t see yourself without from day to day.

To me it’s about finding something you like, something that brings joy to your world and capturing it. It’s about the things that make you smile when you’re having a bad day and you think in just a few hours I’ll be ……… For me it’s surfing, beach volleyball, cooking, swimming or the hugs I get when I get home.

To me it’s about finding a job that fulfills your basic needs and which you derive some joy from doing. Who wants to spend 40 hours a week or more just waiting to leave?

To me it’s about taking care of yourself so you can enjoy life and it’s limitless adventure. Health and the ability to explore new things, new adventures and live to the fullest you can. There are times you maybe robbed of the ability to walk, talk or provide for yourself. During these times our idea of health and enjoying the adventure is challenged. During these times those we surround ourselves with will make all the difference in how you recover when life takes unexpected turns.

To me it’s about having a place to call home and enough to sustain you. If you’ve enough to live and never fear where your next meal will come from, a place to lay your head or if you’ll have heat in the winter. Having enough is all we need to truly be happy. I like to have enough I can share what I have. This is one of the things in life that makes me smile. When you know you’ve helped another and expect nothing in return. There may come a day after all it’s you in need of aid.

To me it’s about giving back. Giving of yourself so by your example of time, strength or money. It’s about helping others not because some book tells you to but because it’s the right thing to do. It can be anything from volunteering your time, your able strength, your talents, money or by giving a lunch to someone less fortunate.

To me it’s about the little things others do to make you smile. That love note left for when you wake, the flower on the night stand, the hug when you get home, the time given to you by others. It’s about all the little things in life many might overlook but in reality some of the greatest joys are found in the simplest gestures. In this moment some joy is found.

To me it’s about the little things you do for others. The meal cooked with love, the time given of yourself freely and the genuine smile you bring to the face of another. When someone smiles at you and they mean that smile. At that moment you’ve touched them in a way more profound and so good that words are vacant and a smile of sincerity is all that can be offered.

To me it’s living today for today, for this moment. Hoping we learned from our past and hoping for a brighter future. If we can truly live in the moment free of our mistakes then we live unafraid and with eyes of a child seeing the wonders of life. Truly living for today means to be free of bounds and free to pursue every dream.

To me it’s about recognizing our dreams and pursuing those worth the effort. Knowing which dreams are obtainable and which are just that a dream. It’s about grabbing on to those things that will bring our worthy dreams to life and never letting go.

To me it’s about being someone who listens and not choosing silence as my language of choice. It’s about caring for others and placing their needs of importance. It’s about hearing with your heart.

These are the things to me that make life worth living and what life is all about. These are the things I will judge my success upon and I hope others will as well.

So what is success?

To me success is living a life worth living. In doing so you will touch the lives of others and ensure your true immortality. Only through the gift of self does our life touch another. For me success will be always trying to listen with my heart because listening with your ears will censer the world and the silent tear another sheds or the joyous moment maybe missed by our ears.

Success as I measure it will be in every life for which my words, my heart, my time mattered. It will be in living a life of simplicity with enough to be happy and fulfilled while having enough to give something back. A life of time spent, smiles shared and little things enjoyed. A life of dreams for my future but ever living in this moment. My success is measured by me in the moment and all the moments past.

That is success to me and it will not be realized until after my passing. It will not be known to me but to the lives to which I matter. The true measure of my success will be measured by those I’ve touched, those who I listened to with my heart. To be remembered long after your passing for your words, your heart and all the ways you made a difference to those who also took the time to listen to you with their hearts. It will be measured by time and talent freely given to aid others in a moment of need. To be remember by those you gave the gift of self to. In everything I strive to give the gift of self. Even should they not remember my name but remember my heart, my words and my deeds.

That is true success. The only kind which doesn’t fade or tarnish. The only lasting success is what you leave of yourself in others.

~Michelle Styles October 22, 2013