A few nights ago I found myself watching the Walton’s. John (daddy) Walton was avoiding his upcoming 25-year high school reunion. He reluctantly agreed to help out – rounding up the “not so easy to find” mountain men who were also avoiding the reunion. It wasn’t said, but it was obvious that John and the other country boys were feeling a bit “less then” because they chose to stay on the mountain, living their simple lives while the more ambitious classmates ran after success.
Throughout the show, each classmate revealed his or her true colors. One guy who competed against John in everything during their school years became a very successful politician/businessman and eventually showed to be a very lonely and unhappy man. John’s childhood crush moved away and married rich….four different times and was on the search for her fifth husband, while trying to make sense of where she went wrong with her spoiled grown children who had no direction in life. Another classmate who also did well financially, constantly fought with his wife as his unruly kids terrorized the Walton kids. Each classmate showed that their lives certainly weren’t picture perfect outside Walton’s mountain.
At the end of the reunion, everyone was sitting around the dinner table reminiscing about the good ole days and when it came time to name “who was most likely to succeed?”..it was John Walton. The rich guy paid homage to John in saying that he had what all of them were chasing after: integrity, character, living life on his own terms, having a zest for life, sense of adventure, peace, joy, is generous, loves his family and is a a good father/ husband/son. They all agreed that John was truly living an authentic and successful life.
Sure, the Walton series is from the 70’s and based around the 1930’s depression, but the message is timeless and that is that we all have a different perception of what success is. So how do any of us answer the age old question: What is the true meaning of success?
Success comes in many forms and many definitions. It all comes down to what you are searching for in life. Often people identify success with having a lot of money, achieving fame, having a good career, raising a family, owning your own home, possessing all the things you ever wanted. But countless people have achieved these goals only to find themselves feeling unhappy inside more often than they thought possible. They wonder if there is supposed to be more to life than all those things, or if they just missed a secret somewhere along the way.
My two cents worth:
To me, true success is something that comes from within. It’s about loving what you do and feeling at peace with yourself. Being true to yourself and not being afraid to express yourself in everything that you do. It’s about being successful in your own way.
In the end, if you enjoy what you do and have inner peace, you will be happy and success will follow.