Defining success as an INFJ
Do you keep up with the Olympics when they happen? I'll admit I don’t. I usually see the news stories about who won gold, though, and who was supposed to win but didn't. In a session with my coach recently I had an epiphany about the Olympics—and life. (Side note: Yes! I have a coach, too.)
How do INFJs define success?
INFJs typically have a non-traditional definition of success, especially if you consider that most people equate success with fame and fortune. Here's what I found online:
Hollywood ending? Popularity? Prosperity?
There's nothing wrong with these, but what happens when someone puts in years of singularly-focused hard work and doesn't win a gold medal for their efforts? Is that person a failure? I would say of course not. If an athlete narrowly defines success in their life as standing on the podium at the Olympics, what happens to those years of devotion to their sport if they don't win? Were they wasted?
What do you think of yourself when you don't "win" (meet your goal, find that special someone, get that job, or have a big impact on others)?
Previously I’ve written about why INFJs are so hard on themselves. I asked you to consider how you can celebrate every step you take when working on a goal. As my coach and I were talking about my business goals, I was reminded that success for those athletes is not standing on the podium and winning gold, despite what popular culture celebrates. Success is acheived every morning when they wake up and train. It's every meal they choose to fuel their body. It's every time they hit their goals during practice. Those things aren't celebrated by the spectators. To the audience, a gold medal is just entertainment.
While thinking about what it took for the athletes to get where they are, my coach encouraged me to create my own definition of success by making sure it includes things I can do every day to feel successful. She knows I have big ideas and that I can be hard on myself—just like you. Of course it feels good to meet a big goal, too—like winning a gold medal! But the motivation and encouragement that comes from feeling successful every day can help you focus a little more on the present and can remind you to celebrate each step. You'll remember that you're actually making progress! As INFJs, we're so focused on the future and what's next that we forget to celebrate our progress.
What's your daily definition of success?
I'm currently in the process of updating my daily definition of success and I'd like to invite you to join me. The idea is to make a list of the things that make you feel successful every day and then implement that list. Every day. Yes—every day.
Answer this: I feel (successful)* anytime I ____.
Make a list. Be sure to pick at least three things over which you have control. Include self-care in your list. Even if you take a "me day," that's also success because you'll be able to get back to your regular routine feeling refreshed and energized.
Implement that list every day.
Look at your list and celebrate at the end of every day. You'll go to bed and see that yes, you were successful. You will feel successful.
Want to share your definition of success with someone? I'd love to hear what makes you feel successful if you want to share. Just comment below.
Here's to your everyday success.
*try this with any word that describes how you want to feel