As we approach the end of 2018, it is a good time to examine, redefine, or re-set your personal vision of success. Or as my teenage grandson says to me, “How’s it going, Gran?”

December brings a myriad of deep, personal emotions that resonate far beyond the holiday season. Some of these feelings are related to holiday preparations, buying gifts for loved ones and friends, and feeling the excitement of parties and gatherings.

Even the decorations are conveying an aura of congeniality and hope.

It seems paradoxical that under the physical beauty of the holiday season and its collective unconscious feelings of joy, there reside deeper, more profound personal emotions that are itching to be examined.

Success Moving Forward

Going forward into the new year, resolutions are routinely made, and most are set aside as the going gets tough or the tough get going.

As the early months of 2019 pass by quickly, it’s easy to forget or set aside the practice of self-reflection, which helps define a consistent personal philosophy, including your values and beliefs – the basis for defining success.

In order to become more conscious about what constitutes personal success, the following are eight tips to consider after the holiday season.

Be Excellent with Consciousness

No matter how you define excellence, it is important to be mindful – to be present – in thought, word, and deed. This is the simplest definition of excellence. Your behavior, conversations, and interactions with others can be defined as excellent when you engage with consciousness.

Say “Yes”

One of the signs of aging is a proclivity toward negativity or an urge to isolate. Changing mental habits isn’t always easy, but it is certainly necessary to create a successful vision of how to live your life.

When asked to go to dinner, to dance, to hike, to stuff envelopes for a political candidate, or to simply walk with friends, do it. The noes are passé. It’s the yeses you want to get to in life. You not only learn to be curious, you also learn to socially engage with clear thought.

Be Honest and Know Yourself

When you fail to be honest or to acknowledge a flaw, it presupposes a lack of character. The more successful personal response is to quickly rectify the negativity and focus on the positive aspects of your life. Lead with a higher purpose and define core values to achieve success.

Don’t Internalize

You often hear the caution, “Don’t take it personally.” Easier said than done. Everyone internalizes negative emotions, and what is most particularly difficult is to sustain the anger or discomfort over a long period of time.

Besides, it’s an unhealthy emotional condition. Put the issues on the table and come to a resolution.

Take Risks and Get Out of the Quicksand

Here’s a mantra for you: “Don’t be afraid to take risks.” Take chances – of course, within reason. Be careful not to be paralyzed by fear or perfection. Be willing to make glorious mistakes because there is no such thing as failure.

Stop Resisting

Resistance is a psychological defensive mechanism that causes you to reject, deny, or otherwise oppose action. Whether it’s the life we live on the outside or the unlived life inside of us – our passions and dreams – it’s human nature to resist.

Resistance allows us to make endless excuses not to do what we really want to do: “I’m too busy today,” “I’m too old,” “I’m too young,” “I’m too fat,” “I need a nap,” “I’ll do it tomorrow.” Sound familiar?

Learn to Adapt

Your work and life are all about change – and change can be intimidating. So, look for the positive or the good in the change. Consider what you can learn. Don’t judge or label the change – simply observe it from a distance. Remember that fear will stop us from action, but fascination won’t let us walk away.

Find Your Passion

What makes you come alive? What is your passion? Passion can be defined as an outpouring of positive energy for the interests and idea that make a difference in your life.

If you can’t get something out of your mind, if you feel blissful about a person, place, or thing that won’t go away, you have passion. It is then that a simple interest is elevated into a rarefied passion. It is then you know what your destiny is going to look like.

What Does Success Look Like to You?

As you move through the joys of the holidays, make time for self-reflection and unleash the intellectual and emotional power of self-knowledge. Make an intention to continually define success for your life.

Be sure to take some risks, some leaps of faith, and be willing to make glorious mistakes. Keep the focus for success on personal truth and professional integrity and success will be knocking at your door.

What things did you learn about yourself in 2018? Have you reflected on them? Would you like to explore them more in the new year? How would you go about that? Please share in the comments below.

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