The way you answer this question is an emotional indicator of success, according to Barbara Corcoran

Barbara Corcoran Means Business With This Quote

Ask ten successful people how they define success and you'll receive ten different responses.

  • Sir Richard Branson defines success as, "Being actively and practically engaged."
  • Maya Angelou defines success as, "Liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it."
  • John C. Maxwell defines success as, "Having those closest to you love and respect you the most." (My personal favorite.)
  • Oprah Winfrey defines success as, "Working toward being significant."

The definition of success varies so much because it is so personal. As it should be. Since success is personal, then there should be clear emotional indicators when we are aligned with our personal success.

In a recent interview, ABC's Shark Tank investor and businesswomen, Barbara Corcoran, mentioned the emotional indicator she uses to help her define success in her own business.

When you wake up in the morning, are you filled with enthusiasm for what the day holds?

The answer, says Corcoran, to this question is the "most honest emotional report card for career or business." Having great enthusiasm for tackling the day is how Corcoran defines success.

That's not to say that you won't have challenging days, but, "99 percent of the time you should wake up excited," said Corcoran. I imagine Winston Churchill who said, "Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm," would have to agree with Corcoran.

How are you scoring on your emotional report card for business/career?

RELATED: 5 pieces of business advice from Barbara Corcoran

barbara corcoran 1:1 takeaways
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barbara corcoran 1:1 takeaways

#1: You’ll find what you’re meant to do by sticking to what feels right
Instead of focusing on a specific career path, focus on the big-picture features that you want out of a job. Barbara didn’t wake up one day and decide she wanted to be an entrepreneur. In fact, she “discovered it quite by accident.” But being an entrepreneur meant independence and being her own boss, something Corcoran knew she wanted in her career. “The minute I was my own boss…I knew I liked being my own boss. And that is the beginning of being an entrepreneur.” 

Photo credit: Getty

#2: Make your biggest insecurity your biggest motivation
“When I was in school I was a terrible student and I was always feeling like a loser," Barbara admits.  But she used this as motivation to prove herself to her boss, peers, coworkers, clients, you name it: Corcoran was going to use the one thing that bothered and scared her most as motivation to knock every endeavor out of the park. “I didn’t want anyone to see me stupid ever again, and that goes a long way to get you back up off your butt and doing something again and again until you succeed.”

Photo credit: Getty

#3: Mentors can come from the unlikeliest of places
Corcoran didn’t enter the real estate and business world seeking out a mentor who was an expert in the area. Instead, she realized she had a mentor at home all along: her mother. “She was probably the most powerful woman I ever met,” Corcoran said. All of her mother’s strongest qualities served (and still serve) as the basis for how Barbara runs her businesses. 

Photo credit: Getty

#4: Successful people don’t take expert advice
What has Barbara learned about the way the most successful entrepreneurs she’s investing in handle her advice? “All the good ones ignore me.” She even went as far as to say that “If they’re really paying attention to me, I realize I’m probably going to lose money on the investment.” The key to being a successful and innovative entrepreneur is sticking to your guns and trusting your instinct, regardless of what other people think is best for you.  

Photo credit: Getty

#5: The two essential skills that you need to be successful apply to any industry
Corcoran says that regardless of what industry or business you enter, there are two skills that will enable you to succeed no matter what. You have to “be able to surround yourself with the right people and you need to be organized enough to get it done.”  Combine this with “a vision that you run like crazy to try to make come true,” and you’re set for great things. 

Photo credit: Getty


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