Here are some underrated accomplishments that might change your mind
Everyone talks about being successful. And what do we connect success to? A lovely home, a great job, family, and wealth These are great things to have, but it’s like seeing things in black and white when there is a whole gamut of shades in between.
Success and achievements are on a spectrum
There is more in life than achieving things other people think are accomplishments.
When we don’t reach the success that others decide, we feel “less than”. We feel as if we failed at a race we didn’t agree to participate in. But if we see achievements and success as part of a broader spectrum and not as a single, strict list, then we are all winners.
The “list” is not bad per se, but it lacks context. It doesn’t consider our background, the difficulties we had to face, the struggles we had to overcome, and the transformation we’ve been through to become the person we are today.
Allow me to offer you a different list. One that is based on the things you are and do, not on what you have bought.
Achievements that are not on the “strict list” but are still deserving of the title:
Being happy in your relationship
Having a healthy, happy marriage or relationship is an achievement. This also includes a happy relationship with ourselves, but I’ve added this in a separate point below.
Being able to set healthy boundaries
This is a great one. Especially when you come from a past where it was difficult for you to do so, this includes “saying no” when you don’t want to do something and overall teaching others how to treat you by respecting your time and space.
Enjoying your own company: this is more than a sentence that people throw around because it’s cool. Enjoying your own company also means that you know yourself so much that you are comfortable just being around you.
Removing yourself from a dysfunctional situation. Whether that is a toxic job, a bad relationship or a marriage, it shows tremendous courage to detach yourself from something you know is terrible for you, even when it hurts so much you’d rather stay instead.
Changing your dysfunctional patterns. Ah, this one. You’re telling me that building a whole new set of healthy coping mechanisms and eradicating things that aren’t working for you anymore is not worth celebrating?! Whoever has been in therapy or has dared to look inward and do the work knows how hard and intense that can get. Where’s your cake?!
As a rule of thumb, everything that shows growth in you as a person counts as a success. Even if that is just you saying, “This is not what I ordered”, and sending that plate back to the kitchen. If this is not something you used to do, then congrats! You’ve done something remarkable that your old self could have only dreamed of.
Don’t let a list of achievements dictated by someone else tell you what or where you should be in life. Living a life based on your values will give you a whole new sense of fulfilment simply because those goals align with who you are.
Success is on a spectrum: big, small, simple, and complex; we could all benefit from being kinder to ourselves and appreciate that we get to grow at different paces, we get to experience life in our way, and there is no harm in celebrating and supporting all the ways a person can be seen as successful.
You got this!