We all want to achieve success in our lives. We all strive for great achievement and personal triumph. There are times though when we tend to confuse personal success with hard work. Now I am not saying that there is anything wrong with hard work, but there are some of us to get stuck believing that great success and hard work are the same thing.

If you ever find yourself in this situation, where you seem to be working all day long trying to achieve personal triumph, it is a good idea to question yourself and your motives. The best way to do this is to think of  what success actually means to you and what it would look like if you achieved it. By finding out what personal achievement and triumph means to you, you discover whether you have sidetracked yourself, creating a life of seemingly endless toil trying to achieve something that seems just beyond your grasp. You must realize that it is impossible to truly reach something that you have not fully defined.

The first thing that you must do then is to define what success means to you personally. Look at the word itself and try and define it, while you can get a standard definition from a dictionary, what you should intend to do is to get a deeper realization of what this word means to you. This will allow you to get a better definition of what it is that you want, and more importantly how you think this has to be achieved. Many of us might define success in a rather standard way, believing that it is either wealth, riches, or comfort. Defining the word itself will allow you to consider what it is that you believe you need to do in order to achieve this success. The ‘how’ of it can be just as important as the ‘why’ in this situation because many believe that the only way that they will attain success is through great strife.

If you are working like a dog trying to find personal triumph in your life, it could be perhaps because your definition of success calls for you to struggle in this fashion. There is no reason why this definition cannot be changed, you can redefine this aspect of success for yourself. Through this redefinition of ‘how’ to attain success, you can begin to discover new ways to achieve old tasks. This simple redefinition can be incredibly powerful because it will change your beliefs about what success is all about. This redefinition is sort of like a refraction in the lens which allows you to see things in a different angle and perhaps in a more clear fashion. Explore your definition of success, redefine it if you need to, and unnecessary problems that may have plagued you in the past will be easier to overcome.

Another reason why some of us get sidetracked, thinking that success is something that involves eternal hard work, is that we forget to define our true passions. The difference between hard work and doing what you love, is the difference between doing something you have to do and doing something that you need to do. By defining what you are truly passionate about, you define what you essentially love to do. Like all true love, its expression is something that carries you beyond yourself. Your passions therefore are things that you need to do; a love that you need to express because if you don’t express this passionate impulse, you won’t be able to live with yourself. By finding these passions and defining them you will discover the work that isn’t work at all.

Sometimes it is very difficult to find this great passion. We are told that we should have some incredible passion, that everyone has one and that it is a natural thing. Unfortunately there are many of us that find it very difficult to discover what we are truly passionate about. If you are having this problem, ask yourself; “what gives me energy when I do it instead of taking energy away from me?” This question should allow you to discover the direction of your passions. It might not give you the exact specific ideas to what you should do with your life and your career, but it can defined those things that give you joy and energy and by doing so it can give you a hint as to what truly inspires you.

Do not be afraid of what you discover when you question yourself in this way. Through repression and the belief that the ideals of others are more important than our own, we tend to believe that some of our passions are wrong or silly. Every single passion that you have will have positive and negative aspects. It is up to you to try and pursue positive aspects so that you create more positive outcomes for yourself and for others. The most courageous thing that you can do in this world is to have the strength and internal fortitude to pursue your passions even though the rest of the world tells you that you are wrong.

If you’re having difficulty finding your passions, you can contemplate your dreams. When we are in a free flow and we let our mind wander, there are many things that we tend to dream about; things that we want to do, places where we want to be. Try to catch yourself while you are in one of these moods and study what it is that you dream about doing. Once you discover these dreams, ask yourself how you might be able to accomplish them. Discovering your dreams and trying to figure out ways to accomplish them can give you the direction of your passions. It is the case that sometimes our passions are the sheer joy of striving towards a personal ideal. The difference between a passionate striving and an incessant toil is the fact that this passionate drive feels wonderful.

Also look back at your life and think about what others have told you about yourself in the past. Those people in your life that love you will often tell you about your potential and what they believe you have been or are now very good at. These people can point you towards your passions because your passions are sometimes those things that you have naturally become very good at. The reason for this is that the sheer joy of doing something tends to focus us in that direction and since we are doing it more often than not, we get very good at that one certain thing. Others therefore can tell you about what your potentials are. By doing a little study on yourself, thanks to positive advise, you can discover what it is that you are naturally good at. Discovering what you are naturally good at is a good indicator of what your passions really are.

Success is not toil. Hard work is either great joy or deep anguish. The difference between the two is that one is your passion while the other is something that is forced upon you. If you are sidetracked on your way to success, working like a dog and believing that you need to do this in order to achieve the kind of success that you want, it is quite possible that you find yourself in this situation where you have not defined the meaning of success for you personally. When work feels like labor, realize that you are doing something that you are not passionate about. Defined the success, discover for yourself what it truly means to you. Define your passions and in this way discover the work that is not really work because it is a passionate striving towards your personal ideal. A life that is undefined can become hell.