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Musically Speaking: The Definition of Success?

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JJ Rocks Article # 148: The definition of success?

Some people see success as fame and fortune. Some see it as just making a lot of money and dont care about being well known. And then there are the ones who just want to leave some kind of small footprint during their lives and make their existence on this planet have some kind of meaning.

I have heard the term thats what success is all about come in many forms. My favorite definition has always been success is living life on your own terms. But the money seekers argument to that is how can you live life on your own terms without having a lot of money. Well, I guess it boils down to what your terms really are and what makes you happy.

Everyone needs a certain amount of money to pay their bills. But some people want as much as they can accumulate in their lifetime. And as I said, if it makes them happy that is their business. The bottom line is that no one has the right to tell another person what their meaning of success should be. Thats like telling someone what religion they should believe in. Its just not right.

Lets take for example, a non profit organization whose sole purpose is to help others and only receive a few modest donations to keep things going. If their goals are reached, is this not their form of success? Of course it is. They are very successful because they have done what they set out to do and are truly happy. So lets take a look at the more common interpretation of success.

The world wouldnt be the same without the people who strive for great wealth and fame. Its like the heads side of a coin. And in the music industry most of us expect to see rich and famous people on TV and at live concerts. Thats what they want to do and it gives us the other half of the success yin yang. But in this writers opinion, its the footprint thats left behind by great musicians that matter and not how much money they made.

When I think of Beethoven, Bach, The Beatles, or Bob Dylan, its the impressions and everlasting memories that will live on and not the amount of their salaries. This is also something that I think about when it comes to non profit organizations that somehow changed a little piece of our world. You dont have to be rich and famous to make a difference. Of course the average capitalist will say yeah, but it doesnt hurt. But not the ones who only care about taking care of normal bills that have to be paid, and dedicate most of their lives to reaching goals that have nothing to do with personal income also deserve respect.

In my life I associate with many artists who want to be famous and become household names. They write me all the time and ask me to review their music and possibly send it on to our connections. I love what they are doing and try to support them on this website. I, on the other hand spend much of my time recording music just so I can give it away to my friends and try to leave a musical footprint in their lives. I havent wanted to be a rock star for many years, but I have a site dedicated to helping the artist that do. Tere is no right or wrong here. Everyone has their own dreams and should be respected for that and not be given advise by someone who has a different approach. Thats like a dog telling a cat to bark.

So to me success is a two way street where different trains of thought should stay on their own tracks. It has a definition that is chosen and defined on a personal level and not to be criticized or dictated by any one person to another. Maybe the first step to true success is to be able to make your own choices and not worry about what others think.

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