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[63] What’s Your Definition of Success?


This episode is all about defining what ‘success’ means to you – in life and business.

We are all so different, and this means that there is no one formula for success.

There are general ideals that can get pushed upon us by family or society – or ideas of success that we have become comfortable with or conditioned to. But will these stereotypical ideas of success truly bring you happiness and contentment?

This episode isn’t purely focussed on a business point of view – I speak more about a holistic view of success encompassing your whole life, health, relationships and or course your creative biz!

If you don’t have a clear idea of what success means to you then this episode will push you (and may even be uncomfortable) as I aim to help you to realign to the path that is right for you… because it can be so easy to find yourself taking the wrong fork in the road.


Quotes and highlights from this Episode:

  • ‘Things will work out if you are smart about it and you trust yourself to make good decisions.’ {Jess}
  • The first step is to figure out what success means to you as we are all different.
  • Analyse the version of success you have been conditioned to throughout your life.
  • It is so easy to have the idea that you have invested time and money into something and so you have to stay doing it even if you are unhappy.
  • ‘Every single day is new, you are not the person you were yesterday. Every moment is a chance to be someone you want to be.’ {Jess}
  • You need to consider the past, present and future you when making decisions.
  • Your business and your life are not separate entities.
  • You need to work out what level of income you need to feel successful and happy.
  • You should decide what sort of relationships you want to cultivate around you in order to feel success.
  • How do you see success when it comes to your mental and physical health?
  • If you don’t have a clear vision or idea of what success is to you, you will just forever keep going around in circles and not get anywhere.
  • Figure out what your business will look like the day you wake up and say ‘my business is a success’.
  • Write down your idea of success, date it, keep it safe and revisit it at a time in the future.
  • ‘You only really fail if you give up’ {Jess}
  • Don’t take it all too seriously and you will make progress and you will learn things along the way.
  • Make sure to check out my new program (starting July 18) – Your Year to Thrive!


Download or Listen to This Episode

(You can also subscribe to the podcast and listen to this episode on iTunes + Stitcher – just search ‘Create & Thrive’.)


Van Den has written 319 posts in this blog.

Jess Van Den is the editor of Create & Thrive, and has been a full-time creative entrepreneur since 2010. She makes eco-conscious, contemporary, handmade sterling silver jewellery under the Epheriell label, and blogs about her jewellery and other beautiful things at You can catch her on twitter @JessVanDen.



A great post Jess, thanks.
I totally subscribe to what you say and believe that we all have the power to shape our lives the way we want to live them. For the last 20 years I have pretty much been self employed and in the beginning it was tough to deal with the idea and societal beliefs that I ‘should’ be working in a ‘real’ job. I had to push through and battle with my own mind over these topics numerous times. The times I did cave and decide I needed a ‘real’ job and went and got one, I didn’t last long and became unhappy : for all the reasons you said but most notably because I wasn’t being true to myself.
During this time I have travelled the world, lived in 3 different countries, had 3 businesses, a happy long relationship and now have a 4 year old little boy; all done under my own steam. It is tough at times but you have to believe you can achieve your goals and that you can be happy living your life your way.
Invest in yourself with time, money, education, health and let the good times roll.
These days with all the social support, online platforms, mentors and sharing that takes place it is so much easier to pave ones way (much easier than when we started!) so I encourage anyone to take that leap of faith and try to live the life they want.


Great podcast and something we all should consider as we try to start/run a business and just live the lives we want to live. Coincidentally, I happened to watch a YouTube video earlier today that discussed how essential it is that we not only think about our goals and what we want to achieve and what success means to us, but how important it is to LITERALLY write these things down. It’s a short video but very informative and give statistics on a study of how much more successful individuals who wrote down their goals were than those who didn’t. Please watch…you won’t regret it! Look up “Is Your Vision Written asks Tracy Lynn Williams.” What she said astounded me and put a fire under my butt to write out the vision I have for my business and my life! I’m interested to see what others think of it too!

What say you?