What Does Success Mean to YOU?

blog guest blog success Nov 23, 2021


Guest blog post written by Danny Carillo, a recent Kinesiology and Sports Management graduate from Western University.


The following list reflects on what I have learned so far during my academic, sporting, professional and personal journey.

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

It’s been very interesting to me seeing how society tries to “mold” everyone into believing what’s acceptable and what isn’t. But I challenge you to NOT listen to what they say and go after what YOU want! Even if it scares you.

It’s when we step OUT of our comfort zones when real success and growth happen, or else how would we evolve? We can’t sit still and expect results to happen. On the contrary, it’s a dynamic process where we must be willing to fail and make mistakes.

Will it be easy? NO! But that’s the beauty of it and what makes everything worthwhile.


Not Giving up When it Gets Hard

Think about a time when it seemed like everything was against you. How did you feel? Odds are pretty overwhelmed!

However, I want you to reflect on how you responded to the situation. Did you rise to the occasion? Or did you throw the towel?

Often, it’s a LOT harder to roll up your sleeves and get the job done. But to me, these are the moments that define success because only YOU have the power to choose what to do.


Enjoying the Process

I admit this one was VERY hard for me to develop. Being somewhat of a perfectionist, I frequently find myself not satisfied with my performance. At times, it can feel like my work wasn’t meeting the standards I had set for myself.

RESULT? No progress and no success (based on my definition, of course).

So, what changed? Well, I finally had enough and said: “you know what, f*ck it, I’m just going to focus on what I CAN control (my effort) and see what happens”.

The improvement in my overall performance was REMARKABLE! Not only did I have a lot more confidence in what I could do, but I felt that I was serving myself and others monumentally better. Now THAT is what I call success.

Success to me means letting go of the things I can’t control and simply being present. It’s the little moments that ultimately contribute to the whole process.


Acknowledging the Small Wins

The reason WHY I started enjoying the process, the realization of the importance of small wins.

It was very challenging for me to admit (due to my stubbornness and drive to improve) the inadequate mindset of “if I don’t reach our goal on *this* day, then it won’t be as satisfying when it does happen”. THANKFULLY, I could not have been more wrong….

Even though I wasn’t at my desired “destination”, I started noticing that the process really is all about baby steps which eventually lead to the end goal. Each “baby step” is a DIRECT result of the day-to-day, mundane efforts! It’s what I’ve come to know as imperfect action :)

It took me a while to realize the importance of our day-to-day choices and how they all contribute to the result. At the end of the day, that’s what success to me is ALL about!


Doing What You Enjoy Right NOW

Doing what you enjoy can do wonders for our overall motivation towards a goal. Why is that? The answer I have deduced from my experiences is this: Everything is a LOT more enjoyable when you’re having FUN!

It’s so easy to get lost thinking about what the future will look like, what your next steps will be, etc. but what’s most important is that we NEVER lose sight of what truly brings us joy. Where’s the fun in that?

The reason why this is the fifth and final item on this list is because I believe it’s an aspect of our lives that often gets overlooked. We frequently think that we must stay at a job where we feel “miserable” because it’s the only way we will ever be able to pay our bills. But I believe that true success comes when we let go of the status quo and go after what truly makes us happy!

My ultimate hope is that you can use this to reflect on YOUR definition of success and think about how you can make that happen. Remember, you don’t need a final destination, you just need to keep moving forward!

Danny is a recent Kinesiology and Sports Management graduate from Western University. Currently, she is a youth sports coach, is developing an in-home personal training practice alongside her sister and is looking to expand within the field by pursuing a Master’s degree next fall. In her spare time, you can find Danny training for endurance sports, hiking with her dog or spending time with friends and family!


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