Success is subjective. What one might consider an example of success might not be considered an example of by another. I’ve realized that being wealthy or having expensive things doesn’t necessarily equate to a sense of personal success and achievement. Rather than gauging success based on preconceived societal notions, I think it’s much more important to have a self-defined notion of success.
The path to success is not linear. Since success is highly subjective, the path to success is also highly subjective. In other words, there is no set path to achieve success. I’ve realized that it doesn’t make much sense to categorize decisions as a “step forward” or a “step back” towards the path to success. I’ve come to the conclusion that decisions and the results that follow are all growing experiences. Though certain decisions may help to achieve success more easily, choosing the “wrong” decision doesn’t necessarily mean achieving success is no longer an option.
Which brings me to my (current) definition of success: working in a field that you’re passionate about. Whether or not that passion pays well or is highly regarded doesn’t matter, at least to me. Passion doesn’t always pay the bills, which is why I find those who actually do seek it despite the fact are particularly admirable. Passion speaks. It’s contagious. It’s success.