May 19, 2017
How do you measure success?
In our BeCollaboration community we notice that many of our guests will tell us that they would love to join our community but they cannot work out how it will be viable for them.
In other words how will they make money from a community who are focused on sharing, learning and supporting each other.
Without a focus on networking they cannot see how they will make money and therefore do not see it as a viable way to spend their time.
There is an often quoted study by Harvard University that states students who wrote down their goals were more successful than those that didn't.
It described revisiting the students ten years later to discover that the 3% of the students who had written their goals down were financially more successful than their peers.
Sadly this makes the assumption that success equates to money as well as assuming that if you throw the word Harvard into the quote we believe it to be correct.
It doesn't take much to discover the study is an urban myth. Therefore my question is, do you believe that success is dependent on your income?
And being financially successful, will that bring happiness and fulfilment?
Why does society automatically equate success to financial gain? And if this is true how many people delay their happiness merely because they do not see their worth reflected in their income.
Bearing in mind we are living in a consumer society we are always striving for more.
We are taught through media, education, and our peers that we should strive for more; bigger houses, better cars, latest tech, exotic holidays.
Therefore will we ever be happy?
Is it any surprise that mental illness is on the rise when we live in such a warped world.
When I was younger I was fortunate enough to be broke.
Yes, you read that right. Not only was I brought up in relative poverty - no bathroom, outside toilet, no hot water, I was always taught to recognise how lucky we were.
We had a roof over our head, food in our bellies, and strong family ties. My Uncle and his family lived two doors away and my Nan and great Aunt lived across the road.
The rest of the extended family lived within a 20 mile radius. I was loved and blessed. As I grew up we strived to build a better life for ourselves.
We made money and we lost money, but we viewed it as a blip, a lesson on life's road to learn from.
As a result money is not my god, it is merely a tool I use to give me choices.
Don't get me wrong I know how to enjoy money with the best of them, but if I can't have a fancy car it doesn't ruin my month.
As long as I have my family nearby and we are all healthy I am rich beyond compare. This is my happiness. Add to that the ability to earn money from what I love doing and I equate that to success.
However I know success is different for everyone. I loved the #ifeelbetterwhen campaign you might have seen on Facebook to help people who suffer bouts of depression to climb out of the abyss.
Knowing you only have to take a small step towards happy enables everyone to see happiness as a set of stages you can go through to take you up the road to happy.
The videos on the campaign were hilarious describing wonderful ways to cheer yourself up.
From dancing like no one is watching to singing in a choir, just by knowing what makes you smile, where your happy place is gives you access to good mental health.
The Dalai Lama is quoted as saying...
The young royals are backing a new initiative called Heads Together to highlight how anyone can suffer from poor mental health and how we all need to learn practical coping mechanisms to support good mental health.
It is well documented how music, exercise and social activities can make a difference.
If we take away the external pressure of having to be Facebook Happy, or the belief that everyone else's life is better than mine or I need £X before I can be happy, then we are on the road to good mental health.
I believe that at least once a day if you stop and think of 3 things to be grateful for we will remind ourselves how blessed we already are.
Today as I type this with a rotten cold I could easily feel stressed about my long To Do list, instead I am grateful for the sun streaming in through the window, Radio 2 playing my favourite song and my husband and daughter bringing me hot drinks all day to ease my sore throat.
And I will get round to all that other stuff - eventually,
Asas Scarlett O'Hara said
(from Gone With The Wind, by Margaret Mitchell)