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Why constantly defining "SUCCESS" is crucial for your future

Mariana Jaeger @break2be

What is Success to you? It is important that you define this for yourself and, if you are a leader, coach your teams to do the same.

To me, the world "success" means the achievement of a previously set goal (or vision), that could have a hard or a soft time component. The goals I set for myself are around:

  1. How I want to feel about myself (mentally and physically).

  2. How I control my thoughts and actions, regardless of the environment, to present myself at my best.

  3. What I need to do or achieve the most freedom of choice possible.

Now, and this is crucial: I have learned to set up short-term success goals to keep me from feeling overwhelmed and distant from my current reality. Because this is what happens to me (and to a lot of people): when I think about the success I want to reach 5 years from now, I get very excited first because I see it as a real possibility, but then that feeling gets overpowered by the stress of not knowing “HOW” to get there, which makes me want to quit, so I had to change strategies and focus on moving forward ONE STEP AT A TIME.

What do we do with the FOG?

When it comes to achieving what feels like success to you, the “HOW” to get there is often very foggy, but it gets progressively clear as you stay in motion. Because something is guaranteed when you do: You either move towards reaching your goal, or/and you make a bunch of mistakes that serve you as great learning lessons.

So, I stopped trying to figure out the “HOW” because I know the path is never clear and this is what I’m doing instead:

  • I create a clear vision of what I want to achieve - I think about it often and imagine myself living like if I had already gotten there.

  • I focus on bringing out the best side of me, which means that I plan my attitudes, responses and even mindset.

  • I commit to taking actions that feel challenging and get me out of my comfort zone.

  • I ask for feedback and take it as it comes, trying to learn as much as I can about me and how others perceive me.

  • I stay aware of myself and the environment around me, and try to catch every lesson or new direction life is guiding me towards.

  • I reset myself instead of giving up.

I’m committed about living in a high-performance state of mind and I try to stay there as often as I'm humanly able to. At this point in my life, I know it’s the only way to get to the goals that are important to me, so I’m always paying close attention to my mindset and body patterns, staying vigilant for patterns. I have already learned that I go through cycles and that all people do as well. (sometimes is just hormones kicking in, other times is time of the year, a birthday or a pending conversation I need to have).


When it's time for Netflix and Wine

There are times though when trying to be at my best gets extra-difficult. Some days I am just so exhausted from life because being human brings all kinds of feelings and it’s part of our journey to experience them - I get that, and I'm trying to be more patient with them. So, whenever those days come and it feels impossible for me to shift myself around, I just flow with it. I have a glass of wine, put on my comfy pants and watch something fun on Netflix.

This is important:

Define what success means to you and be clear about it. You must know what it looks like and how it feels like so you know when you have gotten there.

What do you have to achieve in order to feel successful this week?

What mindset is necessary for you to get to these goals?

Ask yourself these questions at the beginning of every month and every Sunday night.

For leaders:

After you have defined what success is for you, move to define what it means for the team too. I recommend you coach your people by asking these questions and having them come up with their own definition of success and the necessary mindset to achieve it.


Keep this in mind - Success is very personal to each of us. Don’t let society or you boss or even your spouse define it for you. You risk precious time working towards something that’s more important for others than yourself. Make time for reflection and remember to answer this for yourself:

What does living a successful life mean to ME?

That answer will evolve with time. Stay tuned with your better self and keep building it up.

Focus on that and I promise you’ll lead a life you’ll love.

‘Till next time,


Mariana Jaeger is a Leadership Development and Performance Success expert and has successfully trained, mentored and coached hundreds of people in her career. To learn more about Mariana, click here

Mariana Jaeger


Austin, Texas based, serving clients globally.

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