When Do You Become Successful?

Over the past few weeks, I’ve heard the same two comments from multiple people:

I’m glad to see you’re doing so well.

You’re the reason I got back into marketing.

While I’m flattered to get these types of compliments, I don’t think the people who are saying them know the full story of my success. In order to understand it, let me take you back a few years.

When I was growing up and even to this day, my father placed his success on monetary gains only. You made $100,000 a year? You were successful! You only made $10,000 a year? You weren’t successful, no matter the impact you had on the community as a whole. He would constantly hold this over my mother and eventually me when we had our own businesses that made positive impacts in Essex County since he made more money than us working at a distillery.

My mother was different. This is a woman who put all her passion into what she did, regardless of money. I honestly think that she would gladly volunteer in her own business if she could. She was known far and wide for her horticulture skills. However, she would also be the one going to my dad whenever she needed money for the business, which was a lot of the time. When I started my business, I kept asking myself one question, “Who had the better philosophy around success?”

I started out my business with my dad’s philosophy of having money to be successful. When I didn’t have money, I was a failure. When I did, I would lavishly spend on myself and others to show off my wealth. It wasn’t until the day I met Jordynne Ropat of Plant Joy that I realized what success meant.

Jordynne knew me before I knew her as she followed me on Instagram. When I met her, she recognized me instantly and offered me some of her vegan donuts. From there, I started supporting Jordynne every chance I got and many people did as well. She got so successful that she went from a pop-up shop to having a storefront that sells out almost every day in just over a year. However, this woman continues to stay humble and thanks everyone who gives her a compliment of any kind. She has also been supportive of me and my business ventures throughout the year.

Success isn’t just about money or passion. It’s about the relationships you build through something you’re passionate about that help make you a household name within a community. Having just one of these things will never make you a full success, but having all three elements almost guarantees it.

Kylie TiffinComment