Success in in the eye of the beholder

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Success seems to be everyone’s goal today. We’ve all had our moments of success in one thing or another, and we all continue seeking it – who wants to fail! – but there are many definitions of success. 
To some, success means only their careers: “I will be successful when I am

Success seems to be everyone’s goal today. We’ve all had our moments of success in one thing or another, and we all continue seeking it – who wants to fail! – but there are many definitions of success. 
To some, success means only their careers: “I will be successful when I am
promoted to general manager”. Others see it in dollars and cents: “I will be successful when I make $80,000 per year”;  for others it’s material things : “I will be successful when I own a large house with two nice vehicles in the driveway”. 
Success can also contain significant
subjective elements, something deeply
personal: “I will be successful when I
overcome my anxieties”. Success for one person may not be success for another. Obtaining a passing grade of 60% may be a great achievement for one student while obtaining anything less than 80% may be a failure for another.
Society tends to evaluate success in objective terms based on things such as income, education, employment, turnout to an event, amounts raised, etc., and ignores other elements that are arguably more important, like innovation, support, courage, dedication, etc. – things that can’t be easily measured or graded.
For example, the annual Terry Fox Run has witnessed a decrease in the number of people who participate in the run. However, for 35 years, the run has succeeded in
uniting thousands of people, across the country and around the world, towards a common cause in one man’s name and memory. To date, $650 million has been raised through the Terry Fox Foundation for cancer research. Now that’s success!
What about the proposed biomass
conversion centre (see page 3)?  Doesn’t it deserve to be applauded even if things do not pan out exactly as hoped? It does. As Theodore Roosevelt said, “It’s hard to fail, but it’s worse never to have tried to
succeed.” After all, taking a risk is more productive, and stands the chance of being more successful than simply doing nothing.
This week, the Pontiac Journal, along with partners SADC Pontiac, ProMutuel La Vallée Insurance, CHIP 101.7 FM Radio, and the Pontiac Conference Centre will
celebrate success here in the Pontiac – the success of the more than 100 finalists in the annual Readers’ Choice Awards. These small and medium businesses have owners who are husband and wife teams, several friends, or a single proprietor, who all work the long hours of business owners. These awards are one sign of success. First, second, or third place, they are all equally successful.
 Success lies not only in crossing the
finish line, but also in the journey of getting there, taking chances, learning what’s important, meeting new people and
learning from them, learning from mistakes, and handling situations that test our
character. It’s a matter of self-fulfillment which must be subjectively measured, not objectively enforced.
Allyson Beauregard, Editor