When You Have No Successes to Report

By Susan Leigh
How do you measure success? Do you see it as winning big contracts, promotions and pay rises, awards and effusive letters of appreciation? Or are you happy with a simple ‘thank you’, knowing that you’ve done a good job? Or maybe more free time is your vision of success.

Mostly, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that some people measure success as simply getting out of bed, washed and dressed in the morning. Yes, medals, certificates and accolades are all well and good. However, moving from a low point towards a successful end result can require real courage and tenacity.

Indeed, not every day can be a massive success and or witnesses great achievements and newsworthy outcomes. So, what about those times when there are no successes to report, no great reasons to celebrate? How do you measure success in such seasons?

Learning Success From Successful People

Now, let’s first consider the people who are built for success, those people who’ve made and lost millions, sometimes several times over. They know about success and understand the drive and vision needed. These people also have the tools required to grow, thrive and excel, how to view setbacks as learning points. They have the tenacity and resilience to see beyond challenges, rarely considering failure an option.

These people recognise opportunities to be flexible and reevaluate the big picture, ready, if necessary to take a detour along another route. They have the mindset and determination to see beyond any hurdles, and are able to apply that focus over and over again.

Additionally, important to reflect that the time spent identifying and growing the necessary skills for succeed is in itself a significant investment in any eventual achievement. Turning up is the first positive action, demonstrating that you’re ready and willing to learn and persevere. So, making that phone call, sending that email, attending that networking event are all important foundations on which to build.

You may measure success by thinking about baking a cake. Many tasks are necessary for rewarding a beautiful confection arrives. You must shop for ingredients, ensure you have the necessary kit, know what to do, the recipe, how long to bake it for all adds to the end result of a delicious cake. All these are mini-successes in their own right.

Discipline and Success

Discipline sets in place good habits. And even a disastrous result can teach us how to do things differently. After this past year of perhaps scarcely leaving the house, little jobs, money and an equally stressed partner or children locking you down, success may be about simply turning up with a smile, briefed and ready to go. Mutual support, empathy and understanding are especially important at this time, along with gentle encouragement.

Success is a Journey of Learning

Success often includes learning new methods and skills, being flexible, adaptive, and a team player when necessary. It also entails being receptive to different ideas and prepared to delegate when others have more time or expertise. Self-care, attention to quality sleep, eating, breaks, and exercise, are also necessary factors. Doing this is a good way to instill an enthusiastic mindset which focuses on a rewarding endgame.

In business, you may measure success by outsourcing or hiring other members of staff. However, this may initially feel like an additional stressor, rather than an exciting success. Hiring someone adds a financial overhead and can also take you physically away from your business whilst you train and oversee their work. But ultimately, an additional team member will free you up for other work or enable you to take time away to recharge your batteries, a success in itself.

Easy Ways to Manage Stress as a Key to Measure Success

If maintaining focus proves to be difficult, it’s important to find ways to work on any underlying issues and problem areas. You can manage stress and find positive ways to cope by:

  • Utilising the services of a therapist, business coach or mentor;
  • Mixing with like-minded people who understand and are supportive;
  • Sharing and discussing problems with family, friends or professional groups.

However, if work has become a thankless environment, some people may feel stuck, with few options for change. Choices are often limited when there are children to care for, a wage to earn, friends and family to accommodate. But people in those situations may eventually vote with their feet and walk away. Or succumb to stress and ill-health. On average, UK workers take 5.8 sick days each year, at a cost of £723.80 per employee or £77.5 billion to the economy.

Also, consider the work environment when management is assessing staff performance and their ongoing commitment to results and growth. Setting goals that staff feel are relevant and important, that motivate them to stretch themselves and succeed delivers important benefits to all involved. As does being understanding and providing the relevant support.

How to Measure Success: Start Small and Succeed Big

So, whenever you feel that you’ve no successes to report, start by giving yourself credit for each small step along the way. Even things like having a shower, making a phone call, sorting your inbox, filling out a form, can be significant results in your day. Sowing and nurturing the seeds, keeping focussed, supporting good habits all encourage your vision on your journey to whatever success looks like for you.

Susan Leigh, Altrincham, Cheshire, South Manchester counsellor, hypnotherapist, relationship counsellor, writer and media contributor. Susan helps with relationship issues, stress management, assertiveness and confidence. She works with individual clients, couples and provides corporate workshops and support.

She’s authored 3 books, ‘Dealing with Stress, Managing its Impact’, ‘101 Days of Inspiration #tipoftheday’ and ‘Dealing with Death, Coping with the Pain’, all on Amazon & with easy to read sections, tips and ideas to help you feel more positive about your life.

To order a copy or for more information, help and free articles visit http://www.lifestyletherapy.net