Defining success

I have been thinking today about what I define as success.

I have been quite disturbed by my own thoughts, because my first thoughts were connected with numbers.

OK, so when it comes to blogs, do you reckon them a successful blog by the number of hits on the stats counter? By the time you read this, I will have turned my stats counter off. It’s an experiment; it may go back on again. Do you find a new blog and after a little while check out how many hits it’s had and how long its been going for? I do and I am now ashamed of this.

To be a successful blog, what number do you count as being a good number of hits per week, per month, per year? As I have said before, there’s always a bigger fish. There’s always blogs with bigger numbers and wider readership and more comments.

In the end, if only ONE person reads and enjoys, then that’s successful. If no one reads but you still enjoy writing it, then that’s successful.

I struggle with this because to be a successful writer, the outside(that is outside my head) world deems certain numbers of sales to be the gold standard of success. To be on the best sellers’ lists, is a goal most writers lust after, perhaps. To be honest, that’s the only way you’re going to make a real living at it.

But my quest is now to quit worrying about numbers. Hits on this blog, sales of my book….irrelevant to the actual concept of success. Each person who has read Strangers and Pilgrims found it took them on a unique journey, and they learned something special about themselves and their lives. Don’t get me wrong: I really want it to reach greater numbers of people. But not for the numbers game, so I can define it by that criterion as successful. Rather because I believe it can change lives.

My writing is my gift to the world: I’d like more people to open that present and enjoy it. But that’s because it’s for them and not because the numbers matter in themselves.