My girlfriend has a conundrum. Her relationships with her husband, kids, family and friends are thriving. She’s creatively fulfilled. She lives by the beach in northern QLD where she owns her own home and she’s literally a four minute walk from her parents who are needing her support as they age. She also has a reception job at the local vet where she’s popular with both the staff and pet owners. She really loves where she’s at in her life.
But. And there’s always a But! She only gets paid $22 an hour, as compared to the $60 an hour she could earn in Brisbane if she went back to an executive assistant role. This salary disparity makes her wonder if she’s not reaching her potential or doing as well as she could.
Which begs the question – what is our full potential? We all acknowledge that money isn’t everything, that work/life balance is essential and that reaching our potential will look different for everyone.
But it’s hard to ignore that little voice in our head that compares us to our peers who are running up the corporate ladder, high heels and all. Or to the many entrepreneurs worldwide whom we see juggling work, kids and relationships on social media and in glossy magazines.
And for some of us that voice is louder than others – mine used to roar for years. I was constantly comparing myself to everyone else’s success story and wondering why I couldn’t ‘make it’.
It’s hard to step back, really step back, and consider where we are in our own life and what we really want – not what we think we want.
Our minds and egos will always compare us to others but the challenge is to drop out of our heads and into our hearts. To be guided by what feels right, rather than what we think is right – because to me, the measure of success is our level of happiness. From where I’m sitting, if we’re as happy as my friend above is, that’s what success looks like to me.