Jon M. Huntsman School of Business

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Friday, May 25, 2012

Redefining Success

Redefining Success 

Although I make less than $20,000 a year and live in a small basement apartment with my husband, I consider myself successful.

I have a job, a supportive family, and a shelf of Ramen Noodles. What more could I need?

Sometimes in the world today, I think we get caught up on what the definition of success is.

I admit that it would feel great to meet the world’s definition of success by having lots of money or a nice car, but I would have to ask myself if it has any meaning. Wealth, fame, and power are not set in stone. As we have seen in recent events, such as JPMorgan Chase’s multibillion-dollar trading loss and fluctuating unemployment rates, money doesn’t mean stability.

I was reading the book Success Built to Last: Creating a Life that Matters by Jerry Porras and Jim Collins, and in the first chapter they redefine success.

“The real definition of success is a life and work that brings personal fulfillment and lasting relationships and makes a difference in the world in which they live.” (pg. 19)

I think something that can always be relied upon is simply ourselves. If we strive to create a life with meaning every event, good or bad, can help steer us in the direction we want to go.

Porras and Collins go on to say that when we find the job that brings meaning into our lives we would be “willing to do it for free, for its own sake.” (21)

As students there is no better time to prove our passion to our future employers. So go ahead take that entry level job that might pay off, or accept that internship for no pay. It might give your life more meaning, and that’s a redefinition of success.

--Klydi Heywood

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