The cost of success

*This is part 2 of my post on Success.*

I tend to be an all-or-nothing person. And this quality can be both good and bad.

If I make the decision to do something, I want to give it my all. I want to really invest the time and energy that is necessary to make it successful. I get bored with mediocrity.

The downside is that I might be doing something at a level that is perfectly acceptable. But since it doesn’t meet my standard, I don’t want to do it at all. (I say the word standard with a lot of sarcasm because sometimes my standard can be ridiculous!)

This is a trait that I have really been working on during the past year. I am trying to be more content with where I am in life, even if I am not feeling the “thrill” of success.

I have heard so many times in my life of women who “wanted it all”. A great marriage. Perfect children. A fulfilling career. A beautiful home. And absolutely no fine lines or gray hairs from the stress of rushing from one thing to the next to achieve this idealistic existence.

But I know from experience that it’s not possible to have it all. If I am going to be successful in one area, then I must choose other areas of my life that will have to give. I only have the time and energy to do a good job at a few things at one time.

On the other hand, I can be average, mediocre or downright OK at more things in my life. And sometimes average is good. Especially if it allows me to keep my sanity. In fact, average can be better than letting something really important slide because I am trying so hard to be successful in another area.

You might think this the end of my stream of consciousness on the topic of success. But no, there’s more.

While you’re waiting, tell me what’s on your mind. Are you feeling like you are trying too hard to be good at everything? Are you happy with average? Or are you longing for more success?

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5 Responses

  1. I have given this a lot of thought too. I think I am an "all or nothing" sort of person. Measuring success can be really hard for people like me. Instead of having descriptions like mediocre, somewhat, average—we have two: success or failure. But recognizing this bad, bad, bad line of thinking really helped. Now I notice when I'm doing it, and consciously give myself permission for a little more average. Way happier, believe me!

  2. I know that I need to strive to be more successful. I'm always telling myself that at least I'm not the worst cook, lousiest housekeeper, have the messiest desk at work. I sometimes watch hoarders so I can tell myself I don't have the messiest house. Working on having a little more drive to get things done and be better at things. I don't have to have it all or do it all, but I could definitely to better!:)Lynn

  3. I too used to be an all or nothing person til I realized that I just wasn't happy having to live up to my own very high unattainable expectations… so with a lot of talking myself through it (ok constantly), I have come to be ok with just doing things ok. Yes there are moments (ok still lots of them) that I wish I had a more organized cleaner house & that I wish I had a more successful business but that is what I'm striving for this year! 40 is my year for big things!! 99% of the time I have happy kids (except when the 7:30 witching hour hits – like now;). 99% of the time I have a happy marraige (again except when the witching hour hits:). I also have a pretty good part time job (other than Discovery Toys) that I'm ok with. So to have most parts of my life so good, it's ok to be ok with the rest. Know what I mean??(I also like not having to type that crazy word thingy too:))Laurel

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