Fundamentals of Success By Deborah Neary

Deborah Neary

Do you feel successful? 

Why does it even matter?

Does one need to feel like they are a success in life, business, family affairs, and relationships in order to have ideas and opinions about the fundamentals of success?

I have spent my entire life feeling like I cannot talk about this subject unless I have proof of it, in the form of income, to make my father proud, or some other extraordinary ‘evidence’ that I am living a successful life.

According to popular belief, achieving success requires a combination of risk-taking, making sacrifices, and putting in an immense amount of effort. 

This has caused much anxiety, even as a child, I had this awareness and have felt somewhat inadequate in my pursuit of ‘success”.

I ask myself “Am I putting in an immense effort?” By my judgment, I don’t think so! I prefer Dale Carnegie’s quote, “Enthusiasm is the little-recognized secret of success. It is often the difference maker between the exceptional and the mediocre.”

I am willing to be enthusiastic but don’t particularly resonate with “immense amounts of effort” But that’s just me. Recently I had a liberating conversation with my best friend and mentor Russ DeVan, who is also my business partner. We love to philosophize and get to the root of a dilemma or existential angst.

Russ reminded me that when Napoleon Hill wrote ‘Think and Grow Rich’ he was not a rich man himself. One can share information of utmost importance and ideas that can change the world or one person’s life. Napoleon Hill is a perfect example of this fact.   

Thinking about my personal success now and trying to ignore the negative babble, “I cannot possibly be of any help to anyone until I can prove that I am already successful”. I know I am not alone in this department.

Back to the conversation with Russ, we continued to explore why I can write today about this subject.  Another great wisdom Russ shared with me is that It is not necessary to be successful in order to achieve success. This is a revelation and a relief, to say the least. My daughter, Fiona, loves to listen to different philosophical conversations on this subject.

She told me over a coffee that many life coaches talk about how important goals are but also how important it is to accept where you are and give yourself credit for all your achievements and your failures.

She explained how they talk about balance. If you have hefty goals they can be discouraging and even set you back if you don’t reach them when you expect to.

Both are important and both need to be carefully balanced.

I love learning from my children’s wisdom.

I would say the fundamentals of success are subjective. The only definition of it is what you think it is, nothing else is relevant.  I would guess that many people have not thought about their own success in this way.

For me, it has allowed me to breathe easier and to allow myself to be successful on my own terms. 
Gosh, now that I think about this I can tell you there are so many people who live their lives using the fundamentals of success and may not be aware of it.

To name just one, my mother. She is in her late eighties, a survivor of abandonment and abuse as a child. Later again she was abandoned by my father. She remarried and moved to rural Ireland where she lives in a little old cottage in the country, far away from the city. She has no internet and lives a simple life. Her best friends are farmers who love her and they look after one another. She loves to garden and loves the birds who frequent her birdfeeder. I don’t see her often and her hearing is not good so we don’t talk alot. My mum does not need a thing. She has money, friendship and solitude. I always thought my mother could have had a “better life” and that she is lonely. I made a judgment that she is not happy being alone and maybe she needs a computer to stay connected. The thing is, this was her choice and her definition of happiness. Peace and quiet and the simple life is all she ever wanted.

My father couldn’t understand this. He was the complete opposite. He was forever striving for more, bigger and better. He was an entrepreneur through and through, a successful money manager in the UK. He moved to Florida, with his new wife and got into real estate. They owned several homes which got bigger and grander. People always saw him as a wealthy successful man and he just loved that lifestyle.

My mother didn’t want anything like that. They were both successful in opposite ways. My mother is still going strong and I would say she is living a successful life because she found happiness on her terms. Who am I to judge!

I love being with people who are accepting of others. Then compassion for all living things. Love of course and the appreciation of beauty are up there.

Money is a groovy thing, it allows us to have more choices so let us manifest more of it, but at the end of the day what really matters is how you feel about your life. Health and wealth are important and undeniably high priorities but without love and compassion in my opinion it’s just material. 

In conclusion…


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Deborah Neary
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