How does your definition of success and failure make you feel?


What is your definition of success and failure?


A few days ago I was on a special LIVE episode with the guys at The Digital Technopreneur, and we discussed the topic of Defining Success and Failure. 


Many people see success and failure as opposites.  But success can depend on context, maybe from an observer or a belief system that you have picked up along the way. Perhaps as a child, you were taught that success meant getting straight As. Or perhaps getting a promotion at work meant that you were successful? But can you truly have success without failure? And is failure really as negative as we make it seem?


Zig Ziglar talks about defining success in his book “Born to Win.” He argues that success cannot be defined in one sentence but instead comprised of many things.  I must say, I agree.


For me... have had some major successes:

  • Having three beautiful happy and healthy adult children when I was told I would not be able to conceive and if I did, I would never carry to full term.  That is a huge success and one I am proud of every day.


  • Paying off $600,000 in debt**. Let me let that sink in... yes, $600K in debt. All. Paid. Off. Some may argue that I had failed by even having that much debt. It's certainly not something I would recommend or wish on anyone.  However, the lessons I learned about myself, about acceptance, judgment, resilience, and perseverance...I would not trade those lessons for the world. 


  • Believing in myself and starting my business at 50 years old; seeing the definition of success from all of my client's points of view being achieved... That just lights me up!


Now, it can be said that success and failure are subjective. Similar to beauty, they are in the eye of the beholder. Let me explain with a real-life story. 


About eight years ago, someone dear to my heart at the time asked me, “How can I be such a failure in so many areas of my life and still go about life as if everything is OK?"


I was shocked!  On so many levels!


I had never thought of myself as a failure or that I had failed at anything (except maybe Western Civilization and some math exams). My perspective was that some things just didn’t work out.  From the parts of my body that did not want to function, on my timing, to my marriage, friends, businesses, and decisions made.  


I was putting myself out into the world, exploring opportunities, and meeting fascinating people. I believed my body would do as it was supposed to do and started looking at the situation more holistically. I had beautiful relationships until they weren’t, and I learned and grew in businesses and relationships, and from decisions made. 


So, I ask you...How can that be a failure?  


My then friend could only see the negative of the situations, instead of focusing on looking at the bright side; the lessons I was learning; the changes I was making. In his eyes, I hadn't ticked the boxes I was supposed to. His limiting beliefs were blinding him to the success I was achieving. 


I'll leave you with this last quote to reflect on. Albert Einstein once said, "failure really is just success in progress." 


With that in mind, I invite you to share with me your successes.  Share with me your thoughts on how can failure define success and how to continue after you have reached your idea of success.


Feel free to drop me an email and let me know or join my Facebook group Mindset for Entrepreneurs and share or experiences or DM me @Lisacouturier_ on Instagram.


Ready for more inspirational content and helpful business tips?

Join our community of driven entrepreneurs and stay ahead of the game. Subscribe now for exclusive insights, tips, and offers delivered straight to your inbox!