Hello SOTGC community,
Lately one of the themes that I constantly hear being kicked around at work and networking functions is “defining your own version of success.” The people I meet who truly seem happy with their careers and what they do are the ones that are following their passions and creating their own version of a “successful career.” Now this could mean that their version is in the corporate world…or it could mean they are blazing their own trail into entrepreneurship.
There is someone in my life who, last year, left his position at a very prestigious law firm in California and is starting his own private practice. For years this man worked 65-80 hours a week hitting all his bonuses for required and exceeded billable hours…and hated his career. When I first met him and asked what his day was like or how the world of “mergers/acquisitions/transactional law” was I could feel him emotionally sigh and steel himself for the conversation to come.
Now, he is working just as many hours starting up his own law practice and doing research into the types of cases he wants to specialize in, and I’ve never seen him happier. We recently went to a holiday party some friends were having and they asked him about a case he was working on. I watched as his eyes lit up, his voice was animated and passionate, I saw how captivated by his words the group was…and I realized that the happiness I was seeing is due to his decision to create his own version of success. A version that was no longer tied up in the desire to make Partner at the firm he was at, ensure a 7 figure a year salary doing a job he hated and that was slowly killing him inside…and I’ve never been more excited for him.
So for those of you who are miserable with what you’re doing in your careers, that have been thinking long and hard about making a change, and have been preparing financially and emotionally for it…big kudos and salute to you for your bravery! For all of you who have let others dictate what your success should look and feel like but for some reason it isn’t resonating in your soul the way it seems like it should…what’s your happiness worth? At the end of the day isn’t your own definition of success what really matters…?