How do you measure success?

July: 49/100 #100bookchallenge

Reading 2 books each week was always going to be a challenge and changing jobs was a nice little hurdle! But in true Simone style; I found a solution and resorted to audio books when spending more time on the road and rail.

If  I don’t make 100 books this year, a younger version of myself would no doubt think they had failed. What can I say; I’m a little competitive, a little driven and probably a little stubborn too!

When reading “Silent Guides” recently, it talked about how you determine ‘Success’. Often success is based on what you have achieved, when in fact it would be more helpful to judge success on how much you have tried. This certainly resonates with me.

Although reaching 100 books would be highly satisfying, “Silent Guides” has reminded me that I don’t want to lose focus on: the reasons why I started this challenge, the learning along the way, the satisfaction gained and the way this challenge has changed my habits and focus.

Know your goal.

Know your why.

Know the desired actions.

Know how to define success.

Know how to measure.

Cognitive biases and external pressures get in the way of people realising what they actually want in life. It’s important to measure success the right way because it informs how you spend your time and effort. Money and job titles are the most common measures of success – but they aren’t mine anymore. Over the last few years, my focus has certainly changed and with that change, I’ve had to change how I measure success.

How can you measure success and what it means to you? 

  • Don’t compare: Social comparison bias explains how our judgments are often influenced by comparisons to others. John Wooden (Basketball Coach) wrote ““True success is attained only through the satisfaction of knowing you did everything within the limits of your ability to become the very best that you are capable of being”.
  • Time: Success doesn’t happen overnight. Consider what you’ve learned and how it will help you achieve success in the future. Don’t define yourself by your current situation, be patient and contemplate who you are becoming.
  • Measure what’s hard to measure: Money is easy to measure and easy to compare against. It’s hard to measure the things that I care most about: being a good human being, relationships, mental and physical health, freedom, and fulfillment. Qualitative feedback is key for me so I take time to reflect!
  • Know your values: Work towards your own metrics for success and don’t feel like a failure because you’re not meeting someone else’s expectations.
  • Measure outcomes: The number of books I read is a poor proxy for learning. In order to learn, I need to read the right books and retain what I have learnt. In order for learning to help me achieve success, I need to put what I learn into practice.Measure success in terms of the outcomes you’re trying to achieve.
  • Learn and adapt: Your values you will change, you gain experience, you learn what’s important to you. Change how you measure success as you change as a person.
  • Bouncing back: There will be highs, there will be lows, enjoy the ride – it’s part of it!






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