Success: When will I feel like I’m enough?

How to feel successful, happy and fulfilled… now.

Our relationship with success is complicated. It’s a messy tangle of messaging from our parents, our communities, our culture and our own experience. Teasing out something that leaves you feeling good about yourself can be difficult – but not impossible.

In this article series I look at success from many angles, and in the end give a recommendation for how to create a healthy and satisfying relationship with success.

Are you a fraud? Am I?
This first article summarized research on Impostor Syndrome, and shared some of my personal understanding of the topic. BUT it also was what got me thinking… this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Is your relationship with success healthy?
The second article starts to share some of my own research into success. I noticed that I had two distinct groups of interviewees, ones who considered themselves successful (and felt happy, and fulfilled), and ones who didn’t. But what made them different? I found that those who thought they were successful had a growth mindset attitude towards success, and those who thought they weren’t succesful YET tended towards a more fixed mindset.

Why do some people feel successful, and others don’t?
In this article I dove deeper into the differences between those who felt successful and those who didn’t. I determined that the interviewees who had experienced life stressors coupled with meaningful support or safety had the most growth mindset approach success (and thus considered themselves succesful, were happy and fulfilled). Those who had only stressors or only safety, maintained a fixed mindset attitude towards success – which often tended to be a stripped down version of their parents’ definitions and very focused on attaining safety.

Fixing your relationship with success… A model and a magic pill (sort of).
Here I shared the work I’ve done in my practice, taking the observation about stressors + safety and seeing if it can be intentionally used to prompt growth (it can). I also shared some of the questions and thought processes I’ve been using with clients to help them through this process.

Why we self-sabotage.
This series would not be complete without acknowledging some of the very real baggage that stands between us and that moment when we will be able to say “yes, I am successful.” I share some of the most common barriers I see with my clients, and the importance of awareness.