Success : Measurements & Perspectives
Introduction : It is perplexing to define success. The term and its relevance, varies from
individual to individual. Hence the difficulty. Most of the time, success is assessed as per present
or near future needs. Students perceive success depending on their educational evaluation,
professionals do so in terms of performance benefits; senior citizens consider themselves
successful depending on the completion of their earthly responsibilities or their health etc.
In most cases, the notion of being successful, changes or rather metamorphoses as per situation
or age or personality.
For the discussion of this article, the evaluation for success is on the basis of defining the
measurements or parameters and then looking at the perspectives of others or self; depending
on the situation. The definition of parameters itself is an individual opinion for what one may
consider as important may not exist at all for the other. At the same time, the perspectives are
also quite relative for they depend on who is it that one considers important for the frank
Context : The idea of success is relative in nature. Eating in a gold plated dish with rich heavy
food is a sign of success whereas eating in earthenware plate a simply cooked menu is success for
others. Some prefer branded clothes to define success whereas some believe in local clothing.
People build grand palaces or own many houses as a sign of opulence whereas others enjoy
minimalist living as a sign of richness. Success indeed lies with the individual.
“For some more is less for others less is more.”
Anyway, to make matters short, the article takes into consideration the role that an individual has
in life and family; say self, daughter/son, sister/brother, mother/father etc. as the parameters for
measuring success. By perspective, my discussion has been from the other person's eyes which
could be taken as opinion / judgement / study.
Childhood / Teenager : As a child, most of us remember doing good in studies, working as per
parents wishes, inculcating good habits; these were seen as success. Most will consider themselves
to be successful. Differences in opinion about the measure arise from our notion of success,
whether getting good marks, being awarded for curricular / co-curricular / extra curricular or
being recognized for some special abilities that reflect the education in us.
Our family members also take pride in the individuals that we are today. And the most important
part of growing up - Friends; these are the ones who though few in number, are those who take
you for what you are. If one gets a chance to meet the teachers and neighbors, then they will
always have pride in their eyes for you. As one says : “Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder”.
Same way there are differences in perspectives of people that convey a different personality
altogether, so a friend might know you as a mischief maker, but to a teacher you portray as a
sincere student, to the parent’s you probably reflect much of the laziness.
Profession : 'Love your job and not your company'. This saying and various factors has made
people look at career and not job; as a way to grow professionally, personally and socially.
Financial growth has proved successful with most of the materialistic things realized too quickly.
Socializing among colleagues, neighbors, friends, family has taken a new form ie through social
networking applications. Compared to our childhood, here the number of groups and friends may
be large along with our inclination to live in a virtual world but lesser time for listening to
individual or others problems. The change in the aspect of networking has just realized the
dangers of technological modern world that most of us face.
The number of perks or promotions or the position in corporate ladder may be a sign of success for
some whereas for others getting acknowledgment in the social arena / world may be the most
rewarding factor. There are individuals who get recognition from society; not through and
certificates but through acknowledgment. Indeed this acknowledgment can be seen equally for a
good or bad man but I am sure that the good man begets awe and respect out of love and not out
Family : This is truly the acid test for being successful. For women, it is more to do with keeping
the home and family together. Children view their mother as a confidante, expect her for good
cooking, need her to be present before them and so on. Other family members keep the woman on
her toes with all their demands and expectations. The woman accordingly has to take on various
roles to run the house with an iron hand and warm heart. For men, the stereotypical husband
image has changed drastically to be the new age man who has to learn to work in the house and
look after the children too. The demand on the man of the house is more towards planning. Men
and women are successful depending on the perspective. If you ask your parents - they definitely
consider you successful. If you ask your in laws - they may consider you successful, probably a
little more critically. If you ask your kids - they simply love or hate you depending on their mood
swings. Defining success is a tricky situation - it's the innermost peace and confidence that
Self : Each individual has learnt to take some time from the busy routine to call it 'mytime'. This
is very important part of the life. We all try to pursue hobby or take up an interesting activity to
acknowledge our need for self gratification. A well realized hobby gives rise to a secondary career
too. Success in this case is truly measured as it involves only the individual perspective and
nobody else's biased opinion or judgement. No wonder activities like exercising, meditation,
music, dance, trekking, etc; all provide the fuel to an individual’s realization of success. Haven't we
heard from senior citizens about them having good health and being independent, as their
perception of success ? The others have their own perspective of a senior citizens’ situation.
Indeed, defining and analyzing success is very complex. The desire to succeed is even greater in the
individual but in what aspect as discussed above is what needs to be thought about.