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Defining Success

Do you want to be achieve success in life? Most likely, that is one of the reasons that you are in college. But what does it really mean to be successful? How will you know when we have achieved success?

Most of us have a vague idea of what success means to us, but a vague idea of success is not enough. Success is one of those intangible terms that many of us use without examining what we mean when we use it.

Achievement of success is very personal. In other words, what success in life means to you will be very different than what it means to someone else. We need to analyze our own ideas about success in order to recognize it once we achieve it and know if we are making progress toward it. In short, we must create our own personal definition of success.


Helpful Questions for Defining Success


The questions below are designed to help you create your personal definition of success. They will help you understand what success means to you and how you will recognize when you have achieved it. Answer the following questions and then create a plan to achieve success.

Name someone who is successful:
Why do you consider that person successful?


Name someone who is not successful:
Why do you consider that person unsuccessful?


Why did you select your major?


What do you hope to learn most during college?


What goal do you want to achieve most after you graduate?


By when do you intend to achieve that goal?


Why is that goal most important to you?


What steps will you need to take to achieve that goal?


How will you know when that goal has been met?/How will you measure your goal?


Define what success means to you:
(Use the answers to the above questions to help you write your definition of success).



Before we can really know that we are successful in life, we must know what success means to us. We map out what we most want out of life, a plan to get there, and a method to determine when we have achieved success. This will also help us ensure we are on track to success and alert us when we are off track.



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