Personal success – how to gain clarity!

What does personal success mean to you? Do you determine the criteria for this yourself? Or are your standards criteria defined by others – and which you meet without questioning them further? Let’s take a closer look together! Because the more clearly you can answer this question, the more you control your own life.

Do you remember the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe, which advertised with the commercial “My house, my car, my boat”? That was some years ago, but these status symbols still play a major role when it comes to success. But hand on heart: it’s your life and your decision: you can choose to meet these superficial criteria. This (perhaps) brings prestige in your neighborhood or your club – and carries a massive risk of dissatisfaction and burnout.

Personal success is individual

Bookshops and the world wide web are full of guides and strategies that “make you successful”. Many of the methods presented there claim to be better than all the others – and the respective authors make a good living from it. And yes, of course you are invited to try out different recipes. I did that too – and learned a lot in the process. So it is our desire for security through conformity to a group, which is deeply rooted in our brain stem, that can tempt us to accept goals that are not our own.

We often don’t feel comfortable with that. And yet we stick to it for all sorts of reasons – because we don’t have time or something else is more important than our personal track record. Which brings us to the topic: In my world, personal success is the degree of satisfaction in achieving the goals you have set yourself. Sounds bulky? That’s right. So let me be more specific.

Setting goals is essential for success

In my world, there are three types of goals that we can deal with. Each of them has its justification and should be present in your success strategy. Here they are:

  • I’ve done it before. These are repetitions of things we already know – we have already successfully achieved a goal in the past and are simply repeating it now. This provides a certain degree of security. As a rule, this will not make you any happier or more satisfied.
  • I know how to do it. With goals in this category, you place somewhat higher demands on yourself and can use the knowledge and skills you have already acquired to achieve new, different goals. This naturally gives you valuable experience and you gain self-confidence. That’s good!
  • It ticks me off and is totally g..l. These are the goals that really drive us and spur us on to peak performance, which leads to deep satisfaction. Heart and stomach are involved, nothing is too difficult for us on the way to this goal. At first, we have no idea how we want to achieve this – but we set off anyway.

And how do I find out what ticks me off?

This is actually simple – and yet difficult, especially for “us IT people”. Because it has to do with fantasy and dreams and almost nothing to do with the routine we have developed in analytics and logic. It is almost always inspiration from others that leads us to our Antick goals: A movie, a story we hear or even a picture we see somewhere. The “ticking” can usually be felt physically: increased pulse, a tingling sensation in the body or a pleasant feeling.

You can now simply develop this ticking into a personal vision: Take some time and imagine that you yourself have achieved this goal. What do you see, feel and hear? What kind of people are you dealing with? What does the environment look like? How are you doing with this goal that you have achieved?

If you can call up this image at any time, you have found your why story – and thus the basis for your personal success. The next step is to “slice the elephant”, i.e. to define stages along the way. You are then back in familiar territory, as you are used to this when you manage projects or teams.

Conclusion and outlook

We IT managers and consultants should realize that our professional activities require our intellect and the left side of our brain. As a result, intuition and inspiration fall by the wayside. At best, we take note of this and are dissatisfied. But if we “bend” ourselves in the long term, function and conform to goals defined by others, we are massively at risk of burnout. That is why it is worth remembering dreams, developing visions and developing existing talents. I would be delighted to support you in this!

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