Marie Forleo introduction


I'm Marie

You have gifts to share with the world and my job is to help you get them out there.

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“No, I’m 100% sure Mom. When I’m old enough to drive, I want a blue van with smurfs painted on it. I don’t care what people will say, that’s what I want.”

Yeah. That was me defining success at age 7.

Though I never did get that blue smurf van, I’ve been happily defining and re-defining what “success” means to me as long as I can remember.

Success is liking who you are, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. - Maya Angelou Click To Tweet

That’s why I was thrilled when Claire, one of our readers, wrote in because she was feeling a bit torn between a more traditional view of success (big money, big job, etc.) and the unique calling of her soul.

Taking the time to challenge assumptions — both societies and our own — is something I feel very strongly about. Especially as it relates to such a relative and often loaded concept as “success.”

Because when you have the courage to question what you’re doing and, more importantly, why you’re doing it — you stay on your edge of innovation, truth and lasting fulfillment.

Now I’d love to hear from you. How do you define success for yourself — at least for right now? Paint a picture for us below in the comments.

Remember, thousands of bright and incredible souls come here each week for strategies, insight and inspiration. Your definition could be exactly what someone else needs to hear right now to inspire them to chart their own course.

Important: please share your thoughts and ideas directly in the comments. Links to other posts, videos, etc. may be deleted as they can come across as spammy.

Thank you in advance for watching, commenting and sharing. You help make our corner of the digital universe a fantastic place to be.

P.S. Click here for a big, massive, inspiring community update. It’s a follow-up on the Dream, Girl Film you helped fund last year!


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  1. My favorite perspective on success comes from Paul Coelho in his book “Manuscript Found in Accra.” He writes, “What is success? It is being able to go to bed each night with your soul at peace.”

    How my soul feels is the only measure I want to use. I can say, speaking internationally, writing best-sellers, affecting the lives of others at a profound level, making *beaucoup* dollars, etc. and any external measure, but it’s really not in the activity. It’s in how my soul feels about it.

    And of course, the love of family and friends is imperative in the overall definition. How much love we have for others and how much we love ourselves speaks to how successful we feel. In the end, there is no real success where there is no love.

    • “how my soul feels is the only measure I want to use.”

      So poetic. 🙂

      I find that the definition of success if more fluid for me – sometimes it can change several times during the day, but as you said, Emelia, it kind of hinged on where my soul wants to be.

      • I’ve never phrased it quite like that before, but yes! That’s it! Living my definition of success means following “wherever my soul wants to be.”

        I consider my primary currency to be time, so for me, success means having plenty of space and time to simply “be,” in whatever form that wants to take at the moment.

        This was a great episode, Marie! There are so many definitions of success out there, and it’s all-too-easy to take on someone else’s definition. That’s why it’s crucial for us to each define it for ourselves.

        • Ooh yes, Kristin. Time is an absolute luxury.

          • Kristin and Emelia have nailed it. It is i the eye of the beholder.

        • I am in the same boat Kristen. Marie says “our true worth doesnt come from our work but who we are” I am starting to understand that time and success is subjective lol.

        • Kristen, We must consider what is our success will forward to. Because we achieve success but don’t mean with us, we still feel not enough and don’t happy.

      • Yes, Lisa. Soul all day, everyday, for all of time. 🙂

    • “In the end, there is no real success where there is no love.” My spirit animal strikes again. Putting this in my quote notebook right now! What a great reminder. It just feels so right!

    • Emelia, I just finished reading ‘Manuscript Found In Accra’ the other day and I feel the same way about that definition! I just want to feel peace with who I am and the work I have done when I go to sleep each night.

      • Hey Dulce 🙂 It was very reminiscent of The Prophet, but that one line will stay with me for a lifetime.

      • Believe success changes over time and morphs into different things as we grow older … but have to agree with the commentary of feeling right in my soul, knowing that I have added to positive humanity (if that makes sense) … and delighting in the small stuff b/c it shouldn’t be overlooked.

    • To me success would be how I mattered in other people’s lives, how I made a difference in the world. Yeah, money is great and that is definitely a plus (and I do feel that energy exchange is necessary), I would love to be able to have the financial freedom to do what I want – travel, not worry about bills, etc. But my real goal is to make other people’s lives better, to help them be fulfilled as well.

      • Yes! This! As a single mum (of a now 19-year old), my overall life success is largely defined by the fact that I raised a child by consciously parenting, giving my time before and after school and having less in my pocket but enough for our needs, and by thoughtfully choosing schools, activities and hobbies for my child to accommodate her needs within my capabilities. I feel I’ve contributed a healthy, emotionally aware and exceedingly kind person to the world! This is one of my successes.

      • Renee Leverington, I really enjoy your success purpose. I also want to be good person, healthy, love. I will efforts to do good things for my big family.

    • What a beautiful quote! I have that book, it’s hiding in my nightstand waiting to be read. Now I have another reason to read it 🙂

      Success, to me, is never giving up on your inner child and her dreams.

      When I was little, I wanted 3 things in life:
      – be around lots of animals
      – be a mother
      – fulfill my purpose and leave something behind that helps and inspires others

      I now live on top of a mountain with lots of critters both in our home and back yard, and as much as everyone doubted our little hobby farm dreams, we finally made it happen and I’m happier (and feeling more fulfilled) than ever.

      The mother thing is still waiting (but probably not long), and the purpose part and leaving something behind are a lifelong work in progress. But on a daily basis I feel accomplished if I’ve made my inner child smile and fist punch the air.

      Do I want millions of dollars? Sure! I’d love to use them to help others, directly and indirectly, and to fund all of my family’s travel dreams. But I’m also happy making just enough, enjoying our animals, and knowing that I’m doing the best I can every single day.

      Actually, I think that’s it. Doing the best you can at everything you do. Applying yourself fully and respecting your personal values, dreams, and hell no’s. And always choosing love. That’s my definition of success.

      • Hey Laura,

        I can relate. I think I had that book on a stand for at least a year before I read it. Your life sounds lovely, although I’m not sure I’m brave enough for ALL the critters. lol

        • Emelia – I am honestly learning so much from them, and they are beyond entertaining. Chickens are the most spastic, funny creatures. But seriously now, animals have the ability to just take life as it is and be in the moment that has inspired me to do more of that too. Come visit, you’d love them 😉

      • Laura, I totally agree that success looks honoring your inner child and her dreams! 🙂 I actually wrote something not unlike a manifesto back in high school that I’ve found myself coming back to recently — I think I was closer to understanding what I wanted from life then than I have been in years! Here’s my list (from age 14):

        “I would hope that when I reach the end of my life, I am a better person than I am now. I would like to believe that I have somehow attained something worth attaining, given something worth giving, taught something worth teaching, told someone something they desperately wanted to hear and meant it, become something worth becoming, and reached my destination without forgetting to enjoy the journey.”

        Looking back at that I can only laugh at how many years I spent headed down the traditional “big job/big money” path to success… whoops?

      • Laura G. Jones
        You said very true. I agree with you. I mean we only want simple things but we have big motivation to do things.

    • your teaching competencies are so fantastic, thank you Maria!

    • Marie,

      I definitely agree with you Emelia that success is dependent on how the soul feels. I have pursued many ventures and have met others that have also done the same. If your intent is profitability, you can gain it at the expense of your joy, time, family, health, and other mutually satisfying virtues. The feeling of the soul is more important than anything that the eye can see.

    • Amanda

      Yes I like that

    • sgmom

      I agree everyone should have their own definition for success and really try to work to follow their dreams and aspirations. But I feel the concept can be used as a cop-out for some to not work as hard at life. I feel at 40 you should not still be finding yourself but definining, inventing or maybe reinventing yourself . There should remain a basic definition of success, which may include a great marriage, a high paying job, raising happy self aware children, doing something that you are willing to give your all to each day (which may not have anything to do with money). Success should be measurable.

    • I love what you wrote, Emelia; thank you.

      • Thanks, Jeannie. 🙂

    • Success for me is being happy with the outcome of a situation, no matter what. That would be evidence that I am not attached. That feels good. That feels like a success… And extra awesome if I receive a big juicy lesson from it that propels me to keep moving forward.

      • TAMMRA.
        That is simple sweet concept about success. I also don’t make complex and difficult for myself. Only simple like that.

    • Marina B.

      Success is to feel like a million bucks 🙂

      • Marina B.

        Thank you Marie!You’re my inspiration

    • For me success is being true to myself and following my heart, under any circumstances. Success is not so much in the results of my actions, but rather in where my acts come from and how earnestly they are done. My biggest goal in life had been to achieve enlightenment. Once I achieved it, society banished me. No-one wants an enlightened woman around; It threatens the status quo. When I meet people, they want to know how much money I have, or whether or not they can get sex from me. No-one ever asks me for instructions on how to get enlightened. Does this mean I am a failure? Not at all. It only means people are preoccupied with worldly issues and consider enlightenment redundant. Of course, I cant expect everyone to want to get enlightened. For most people it would be great if they evolved a little bit in a life time. You can’t force people to seek knowledge. And so, I am a teacher who doesn’t teach anybody anything. I consider myself very successful at not teaching. I am also great at not cooking.
      A couple of years ago, the statue of David had to be repaired and taken permanently indoor. Why? Because people did not treat it properly. Some used it to hang their laundry on, some focused on its penis, some spat on it, and the pigeons pooped on it. Does this mean The statue of David is not a master piece?

      • Cat Kelly

        Gloria — “I’m also great at not cooking!!” SO prefer that outlook over the “I’m not great at cooking.” So thank you for that — stealing! I’ve been blessed to have a great ‘traditional’ law career that I’ve loved, reaching the top of my particular field, with all the fun kudos that can carry, but after 31 years in it, I have reached a point where that no longer feeds my soul. So I’m retiring and starting all over opening a small metaphysical bookstore in the middle of the heartland with a dear friend. Taking a huge pay cut, sinking the retirement nest into the new venture — all stuff that to the outside world looks crazy and illogical. But it feels SO right to me. Feeling energized and vibrant and alive.

    • Nina Lehmann

      Hi Emelia,

      normally I never leave comments but while reading yours my heart was screaming loudly “Yes”. That`s exactly what I am feeling about the definition of success! One can`t say it better!

      Heartfelt thanks for your true and so inspiring words!


      • Awww. Thank you, Nina. <3

    • Bob Mowat

      At age 60 and recently retired from the fire service, I think my idea of success is to live in the present moment, to be thankful for what I have achieved, and to live with gratitude and positive emotions in a manner that will keep me both physically and emotionally healthy.

    • That is also a very beautiful definition of success!

    • I love this, imagine how much nicer we’d be to each other if we knew we had to have our souls at peace by bedtime!

    • Kim

      Beautiful and we’ll said!

    • Andi

      I love this post. I feel like a failure more often than not. Always comparing myself to others who are apparently more successful. If I can change my mindset and measure success differently, it will change my life. Thanks for the positivity and inspiration! X

    • Anita Eisenman

      Yes Emelia,
      Thank you for comments, it was what I am feeling also.
      I am so grateful for so much in my life. In the short run I am hoping to be more authentic where the inside and outside match, a lot of this has happened looking back as I worked all those intense jobs thinking I was missing my chance but touching many. As a woman over 50 the humbling dream of financial independence is a tough one. I know people win the lottery, it happens for many, but… it does not feel where it needs to be at all even modest living, needs to be recognized for woman not hidden . I am so excited to be yet back on the beautiful journey of this life working hard on my Bschool and loving it.

    • Renu

      Beautifully said!!

  2. Lucie

    Hi Marie! Another great and inspiring episode thank you!
    After having listened to plenty of life coachs, I just clicked with what your words and your vision. I was pressuring myself trying to find out how I would get to be like these successfull people who I admire. The way you speak and explain how everyone can live their dreams opened my eyes to a lot of things I couldn’t define. Thanks again for what you do (and, btw your fringes are soo cool!)

  3. My whole mantra for the past two years has been helping entrepreneurs define success on their own terms. I filmed a video a few years ago about “dream scale shame” and how we each need to own what really matters to us and not fall prey to the “shoulds” of others.

    In truth, success is a destination (not a journey) and you’re already there. Everything you do, don’t do, and the choices you make/don’t make shape the success you’ll see tomorrow. The only definition of success that matters is YOURS.

    • Oh, I love this. 😀 we only need to be happy and keep order on our responsibilities. 🙂 But money is something we need, a title is not so important. But I feel that I need to be good at something, so I can say “I did this” or “I do this”. And also, I want to make a different in this world. I want people to eat more vegan and get a new wiev on animals, and on life…

  4. I don’t like the fringe, Marie. I LOVE the fringe!!

    This was a great question, Claire! It can totally be hard to define success. When I relaunched my blog, I had particular goals for how many people came to the site and how many comments I received. I poured my heart into a particular post, shared it all over my social media and I kept checking back to see if anyone commented. No one did and I felt a bit hurt. Negative thoughts started creeping in saying that my writing is terrible, no one cares, bla bla bla. I had to lay the smack down on them!

    I came away with the lesson that I needed to change my intention. At first I wanted more people to come solely for numbers, which left me unmotivated and uninspired. Now, I write in hopes that what I write touches at least ONE person. I don’t really care about the stats. This makes gives me a real purpose for keeping the blog going. It has changed my long term goals for the site. That is how I currently define success: being able to touch one person’s heart, give them tips and resources, and share lessons learned in hopes that it leads to healing and growth for both of us.

    Great advice as always, Marie!

    • You know, Biba, you touch people all the time – in this space, most likely in your own physical world, and on your blog. Just by sharing you shift the energy of the world – comments or not. You’re expressing the Divine that comes through you and that’s all that matters. You touch people all the time whether they are conscious of it or not. Success is already yours. 🙂

    • @Ms. Pillowz.
      I also give things with purpose take care reader. One person only have limited connection with other in a time, but when many people wanna promote or talk about what we are doing that will be powerful. One thing we need consider is take care and give best than they expect from us.

  5. Hi Marie,

    I love what you said.

    There is no such thing as one thing. I fought with that big job in the corporate. I’m now defining my own success. More and more I look to the end of my life and look back. I love it.

    Also — I Totally love the fringe. Witchy? Only in some people’s mind.


  6. That was a great post and why I tell people the only goal they should focus on is to “live in love”.

    Love who you are, love how you touch the world, love how you earn money (or at least the results of the work!). And of course when you do that love comes back to us in all the most special and desirable ways.

    There are way, way too many messages about needing to “be this” or “have that” in order to have achieved success (ESPECIALLY here in NYC).

    The only true success is love (in all its forms).

    Stay true to your heart and share it with the world. 🙂

    Live in love.

  7. For me, it’s ‘celebrating simple pleasures and positive ideals in my everyday life’. This is one of my everyday mantras. xo

  8. Love this Q, because I think it’s a great sign that we’re making strides towards redefining success. As I watched, I thought a lot about Arianna Huffington’s book, Thrive. I’ve always believed that there was a lot more to life than working crazy hours to make lots of money to have a lot of things, but no time to enjoy them or the people we love the most.

    My version of success is being able to have the time to spend quality time with my family and friends and not feel rushed. I want to be able to explore the world and to really make a difference in the lives of others. I want to be able to help other people realize their personal versions of success.

    I feel very lucky, because I’m starting to realize my version of success already 🙂

    Throughout my career in fitness, I’ve enjoyed helping other women see how adding movement can help them reach their goals and dreams as they will have more energy and creativity as a result.

    But, I’m only one person! There are SO many other awesome fitness professionals who can help more people live longer, higher quality lives.

    Unfortunately, many fitness professionals put their own health on the line to make ends meet.

    Today, I’m doing my first free training for fitness professionals and I’m SO excited and will definitely share this message with them.

    Thanks for a chance to reflect on our bigger purpose, Marie! I always find when I do that, that I feel more energized and excited about the day ahead 🙂

  9. We agonize over this question, don’t we? What am I here to accomplish? What am I “supposed to” achieve? What is my purpose? What if I missed my calling?

    I did a lot of agonizing myself over the years, but now I feel at peace. I feel I’m always exactly where I’m meant to be, and I really don’t care for anyone else’s idea of success.

    I love Marie’s advice: “the only definition of success is yours!”

  10. Eleonora

    Thank you Marie!
    One of my favourites so far, I really needed your (and Claire’s) words at this time of my life. And I love Maya Angelou’s definition!

    As to me, what is success to me?
    I believe success is feeling fulfilled. And feeling fulfilled means loving where I am at in every moment, it means loving myself and what I do and having supportive and loving people around. Oh, and, yep, I also believe that money is a measure for success but in the way it allows us to do what we want, what fulfills us without worrying too much about saving because “I don’t know if I have enough for rent and stuff”.

    • I can’t help but comment simply because of your beautiful name. It reminds me of the short story by Edgar Allan Poe~ “Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night.”~ Edgar Allan Poe, ‘Eleonora’.

      • Eleonora

        Oh, wow! Thank you Chas! Love it! 🙂

    • @Eleonora.
      Whenever you think about, someone decide join with a job then they do things with they best effort and fun with people around, each day they happy in time of working. Don’t matter how much money they can get but with that state they never stress for money. Money follow their passion or enjoy day work. Big money will depend what type your working on.

  11. Marie, I would like to thank you. For YOUR success.
    Because it’s redefining what I deem possible.


  12. kc

    This is my favorite video so far! I always struggle with the social stigma of not meeting other people’s definition of success. (Or when I am meeting it, I feel like I’m not meeting my own.)

  13. Akiko

    Happiness is elusive. So is success. I had a choice to join a company as a CEO of a start-up company w a good six figure salary and stock options. But I wasn’t sure their mission and mine jived. The thing is- I’ve just recently become a single mom. And totally wiped out, financially after the separation. So taking the job seemed like the responsible thing to do- until I realised with this job, I would have to “outsource” raising her. Wait, what? What good would that six figure salary be, if I couldn’t see her growing up? Trust me, I have grit- it’s not about that. Some friends and family think I’m crazy, but I’ve redefined success as this: Putting my talent and experience into something that creates meaning in the world we live in, and one that is giving/expansive- not only toward others, but to myself and my family- not reductive.
    I’ve taken that job offer as an confirmation as to what I’m capable of making- and have set out to launch my own business.
    Oh, by the way, I’m on Day 2 of B-School!

    • Cat Kelly

      Congrats, Akiko!

    • @Akiko. You really inspirit with me. Thank you remind.

  14. Joko

    My idea of success has changed over the years. Sometimes it has to do with my work projects, sometimes it has to do with relationships, my children, family, sometimes a successful day is spacing out and watching zombie/cop/vampire/alien stuff. Success changes from one day to the other but always is connected with feeling happy.

  15. Marie,
    First of all your hair looks GORGEOUS!!!!

    Secondly, to me success means having the freedom to do whatever I want with my time. Some days thats working with 3 clients in one day to help them achieve their health & wellness goals, another day is completing a new eBook, and other days it’s getting up, working out, and plopping on the couch to watch netflix. My success is a beautiful thing.

  16. Regina

    I so appreciate your words Marie! And, the fringe is the hotness. 😉 Success to me is living and giving from my gifts no matter what. I believe we would be much happier and at peace with ourselves and each other. Our gifts make room for us all and meet a need for someone else. Thanks so much Marie!

  17. My vision of success means earning enough money that I can shop at the Farmer’s Market and buy whatever catches my eye, no matter the cost. I can afford healthy, delicious, sustainable food, and the occasional bottle of wine. It means being able to replace things when they wear out, without saving up for months first. It means having shoes and jeans that don’t have holes that I hope no one notices, and electronics that I don’t have to fight with. It means travelling regularly and taking lots of time off for being in nature and spending time with friends. And it means being excited to wake up each day and do the work I’ve chosen because it fills me with so much joy. It means consistently making good things happen in the world – for myself, for the people I care about, and for anyone that I touch.

    I’m not there yet, but I hold tightly to this dream of success. It keeps me going.

    • Creating beautiful designs that bring joy to myself and others. If I’m successful, these designs will make me enough money to be able to have a family of my own and spend the most important years of their life at home with them, whilst being able to have my own creative work.

  18. So loved this episode!
    To me success is living my life my way, being able to put my priorities first, be the one who decides how I spend my time. For me that means that I can spend time with my kids, that no boss tells me when to be at work and that when my kids are sick or need me otherwise no boss can tell me that I need to work. Success also means to me that I do work that makes me feel good and that I can help others with my work. Success to me means that I change the world – even if it is just for one person.

  19. Fantastic and one of my favourites so far. We certainly do have a habit of feeling the need to “comply” across so many areas of life – how we should look, raise our children, live our lives, look to others. Well you know what – bollox to that. I’m slowly starting to unravel myself from all these societal chains (that I thought I didn’t have, DOH!) and accepting that my success is doing a “job” I love, with people I resonate with who make the world a more beautiful place, to feel in love with my husband every day and be a calm, happy and encouraging mother to my teenage girls. I literally am going to spend the next 8 weeks doing everything in B School and “letting go” somewhat within my current business and handing that over to the universe. I can’t do it all and I need to have faith that BSchool is the priority for a brighter and calmer future!!

  20. Great vid as always! I totally agree, success isn’t big money…even for those who think it is. But that’s another subject!
    My idea of success is having most of my days spent like this (it’s funny, was reflecting on this only yesterday…Spooky!)
    1- Wake up at 8 am, go to gym with gym partner
    2- Big breakfast at one of my favourite places
    3- Create for my current online business/project/blog at another favourite place
    4- Spend time feeding my spiritual self and sharing what I learn.
    5- Spend time with family and or/ friends
    6- Have enough cash and free time to visit places. Like Barcelona. It’s ridiculous how long I’ve wanted to go there.
    Success to me is more a feeling that specific things though. Whatever help me to feel fulfilled equates success. I might find along the way that the above liat is incomplete…
    But this is what success means to me right now…

  21. Going to bed full of content because I have done enough. And getting up energized because I am looking forward to what is ahead.

    Btw, Fire Starter Sessions is a great read on this topic. 🙂

  22. Mary Rojas

    My definition of success is finding something you want to do for the rest of your life that alows you to grow and change 🙂

  23. Diana

    Success is:
    1. Making art (regularly scheduled days in a studio)
    2. Helping those that make the world better
    3. Regular relaxing days with friends and family
    I don’t want to struggle to pay my bills, but if my time could be set up this way, I would feel way successful.

  24. I own my own business and am super passionate about what I do on a day to day basis. I LOVE everything I do. I feel successful, but I’m just now breaking even financially. I would feel successful if I was loving what I do BUT making enough money to enjoy every other aspect of my life and not worry about money.

    I often think of my husband, who has a job he doesn’t love, but makes stable money. But he hates what he does 8 hours a day. I would say we would both feel like he was successful if he was liking what he did during the day and we were comfortable financially.

    • My situation is much like yours, Gaby. I adore my job/the business I’ve built, but it’s been nose to the grindstone for so many years. Some of that is my own doing, as I am always “reaching” for a little more. It is only in the past 2 years that I’ve apstarted redefining what it is I need and want in terms of personal and family time.
      My hubby had a soul sucking job for many years and now has been “retired” for about 7. He is struggling to find his own direction,
      Defining success has been a challenge because I’ve always been caught up in the doing And having enough, I’ve enrolled in b-school with the intention of liberating myself by allowing myself to be financially successful.

  25. Marie…Love watching your outtakes. Funny and gorgeous. I am so glad you didn’t become a plastic Hollywood starlet instead of this wonderful being you are. Oh and the message is abso spot on. I have defined my success as being truly at peace with where I am RIGHT NOW at any given moment.

  26. JPE

    How do I send in a question to Marie?

    • Louise - Team Forleo

      All of the details are at You can email us directly or if it’s a possible MarieTV question, we have a form on the page!

  27. Kay

    Success for me means “doing what I want, when I want”.

    I remember the first time I voiced this personal definition in public. I was in a room filled with actuaries and I could literally feel their shock horror! Lol – my definition didn’t include becoming president, chief actuary (or anything along those lines).

    I almost wished I hadn’t opened my mouth. After taking a deep breathe and whispering a prayer, I continued “…throughout my life, I’ve constantly been redefining what success means to me. So let’s say I become President, then what? Throughout the years, I’ve become uber clear on who and what’s important to me. And I’ve concluded that I don’t want my boss’ life…”

    After all was said and done, I was happy that I opened my ‘big mouth’. Things aren’t always smooth sailing, but a lot of positives have happened since that day. Eg. I’ve since written a post entitled “What Does Success Mean To You”, which has triggered many to think against the grain.

  28. Lucienne

    Photo of a beautiful lotus ……. couldn’t get it to paste …. ah well …. imagine
    “Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it”
    Maya Angelou

    This has been my personal signature on emails for the past two years!
    As always, you inspire so often at the right time Marie.

    LOVE the fringe and neckline!

  29. Success to me is all about freedom, to travel to study & learn. Any and all of my income goals are to this end. Success to me also means teaching and being of service helping those around me live more healthy, connected meaningful lives

  30. “Success, like happiness and peace of mind, is something you need to define on your own terms. One person’s definition of success may not be the same as yours.” (from Fearless Fabulous You! Lessons on Living Life on Your Terms)

    I was voted Most Likely To Success in High School, which became a heavy mortar board hanging over my head as I entered the work world and built my first business which was very successful. I worked myself into becoming unhealthy, and no amount of commercial success is worth losing your health. Over the years my definition of success change over time from finding and having “aspiration” to seeking and giving “inspiration.”

    Today my definition “success” is doing what you love and loving what you do, making a living by making a difference, and maintaining balance in all areas of your life.

  31. Hi Marie,

    Success for me is to help people make themselves better while being happy and content myself.
    Thanks, Todd

  32. Denise

    So on point to what I was writing about today, thanks.
    I am still in conflict over money, I still have shadows of the past who tell me money is “evil” and yet it sure is handy. When you only hear there’s never enough it wears on you.
    Although I wish to travel and help support the local people in their communities it sure would be nice to travel to these other countries first class although not necessary.
    The conflict arises with you have what you need as to what you desire within reason. I hear but you already have a pair of shoes, do you really need another pair? Does anyone else feel the same thing of needing to justify why you need more money when you already have “enough”?
    Thanks to all, love & light.

    • Liz

      Denise, I am with you on the fear of money. This video is so well-timed – only last week my therapist set me the task of defining what ‘success’ looks like to me, and what would help validate my idea of ‘success’. In mulling over this, I’ve realised that I’ve ground myself into poverty, despite running a successful small business, just to prove that I’m not greedy and shallow like my money-motivated relatives.
      That’s a self-defeating way of showing my ethics, and is, in fact, quite a selfish display – depriving myself doesn’t prove anything worthwhile to anyone and is nothing to be proud of. Imagine how much more I could contribute to the world if I chose to run my business more profitably (not to mention the improvement to my health that a comfortable income would provide).
      I’m still working on a definition that fits me as to what success is, but I like Melanie Young’s version (above).

  33. Ron

    Hiya Marie, Ron from Severn Beach UK ( people from Bristol uk’s place for a day out ). I think success is when you fell you have achieved something that was maybe seen as difficult to do, or you made a difference to yours or someone elses life, hopefully in a good way though. I’m 67 going on 68 and I just got my website built. I’ve been having treatment for prostate cancer for five years now, hormone injections every three months, statins, water tablets, i’m weary, fall over now and then when i’m out for no apparent reason had stitches for that, but i’m about to launch my first high end product on line. I’ve been getting to do this since 2004 and hurdles kept on coming and probably still will but there must be something driving me but I can’t see it.

  34. Success/ Exito is
    Maya Angelou + Gratitude to God
    Costa Rican coffee, yoga,creating ,talking/working with people you love and having enough money in the bank to pay for First Class ticket to Argentina,Peru,Brazil,Colombia,Chile with the love of your life!

  35. Beata

    Hi Marie and of course all amazing women here! I dont have to much life experience because I am 19 years old czech girl, but as every teenager I have had several bad times because of unhappy loves and usual things connected with guys. But when I have read your book ,,How to be Irresistible…” I have realized what my life is about. Enjoying present moment has helped me to make my life more meaningful, I have started to enjoy my trainings on motorbike and every minute with my closest relatives and friends. And now I get to the point…this is real succes for me. I can be myself and enjoy it at the same time.
    Thank you very much for inspiration 🙂

  36. I have had the job that made me a ton of money, I was not happy, I was stressed. So when the mortgage market crashed I redesigned my life, I went back to school and determined what my passion was. I discovered that helping small to medium businesses grow and thrive was so rewarding, even if it didn’t pay, I wanted to help. As it turns out it does pay and allows me the freedom to follow my perfect passion, which is to live in Costa Rica and also be a value to my clients, remotely.
    So the big bucks is not all that necessary for me, but the freedom to be wherever I want and still make money is very important to me.

  37. Whatever our chosen profession we all want, need and should be remunerated in the way the reflects the value of what it is we do and provide. We all need to be able to support ourselves financially. Over and above this success for me is being grateful, which in turn is what makes me happy.

  38. This might be my favorite video of yours yet. GREAT message overall. I especially like the definition of success is different to each person (dolphin swimmer/zombie watcher- haha). Also, who doesn’t like fringe? (people who’ve never worn fringe)

  39. Thanks Marie and all for the amazing comments!
    My definition of success is living a life that is in line with my higher purpose and values. A life that includes adventure, exploration, happiness, fulfillment, love and connection.

    Sure, I still want to have a great career, but now I want to shift from being recognized to being fulfilled. I don’t want to be a perfect mother and lest have a perfect child but rather create a world of adventure and love that we can enjoy together. I want to continue to explore the world with my husband and do things that bring us together and keep us connected. Overall I want to go to bed knowing that, while not everyday will be strawberries and champagne and there will be some blues days and challenges, I’m living my life as I truly want it. That is my definition of success! 🙂

  40. I LOVE how real you are! I did like your fringe btw. You are my new inspiration…be yourself and be happy with it and then you’ll see your true success. Very good tips! Thanks so much!

  41. Wanda

    In the last six months I’ve left a marriage of 27 years; placed my home (of the same years) on the market, and have been diagnosed with adult ADD. What’s success to me? I want to be able to support my two children. I want to do be able to do this with the business I create with Marie’s program. I do not need a lot of money. I need “enough” money to support myself and my children comfortably. That’s it. And I’m not changing that definition.

  42. I have always defined success as the ability and courage to do what you want. Not just agency, but the creative gumption it takes to do something that is not “traditionally successful” and live happily off of your own efforts.

  43. I struggle with feeling successful all the time. It’s difficult to really understand that the most important thing is to be happy with where you are in life – not where other’s would like you to be.

    Thanks for the reminder!

  44. Christopher Bello

    I was wondering- where exactly do we send in our questions for MarieTV?

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Christopher, you can find the form at or drop us a line at info AT marieforleo DOT com and we’ll be happy to help!

  45. Kendra

    Every moment I spend spreading love, light, & laughter is a successful one!

  46. Philiy

    I’m always tell my students to think about what success looks like for them and no one else. (Hard for me to do that exercise on myself!!) Love the writing exercise Marie, when you get us to think about the end of our life and what our journey to get there looks like. Brilliant!

  47. JJ

    My idea of personal success is simple: I’d love to not only be able to quit the rat race and still live a comfortable life myself BUT be able to offer significant help to millions of others to find ways to escape the 9 to 5 world and live their lives to the fullest as well.

  48. My favorite line this week… “…getting up and puttin’ on some underwear…” I laughed out loud – But, some days, I can measure success by having done just that! It doesn’t matter what it looks like, as long as it looks like success to you.


  49. I love the energy and passion that you put forth to the world – it is inspiring and so motivating. I am an artist, author and educator. I am glad that you reminded me to do what I love. I think as an artist and trying to make a business out of that is wiggly as I lose site of what my passion is and get caught up in the marketing end. It is a very tough thing for me to balance. I don’t measure my success in money but I do want to own what I am worth and make a good living from that. To me success is when I teach someone that they are creative that they can draw or paint and feel that spark ignite in them when for so long they were told they couldn’t even draw a stick.

  50. Hi,
    It’s kind of a hard question if you have a lot of ideas at the same time, but I feel successful when I have focus and do everything I need and want to, It doens’t matter if it is my to do list of the day or just a regular weekend of cleaning and taking care of my personal things!

    Thanks for the advice!

  51. Lucie

    Great video Marie. To me success is an inner peace. There is nothing better than feeling at peace with ourselves. That’s the best place to start and go rather towards the world instead of fighting against it.
    Keep on going!

    • Alison

      Amen Lucie, i second that.

  52. My definition of success?

    Waking up to the sounds of the rain forest outside my window- tropical birds and howler monkeys. I get up out of bed and open the doors to my cute little bungalow and look out over the vast, breathtaking view of green mountains and the Pacific Ocean. I’m at the retreat that I own in Costa Rica.

    Everyday, people who need help recharging their soul come to stay with me. They want to have the adventure of a lifetime to find the way back to their true selves. We dance, we explore, we learn, we feel.

    After long days of moving our bodies in nature and connecting on a deep, meaningful level, we go to sleep once again to the sounds of the rain forest around us. It is my heaven. My personal definition of success. <3

  53. Success for me:

    Live with integrity. Be a selfless leader. Take on the challenge of the next obstacle. Solve the next problem. Be the Change Agent.

  54. Rhonda

    Hey Lady thank you for today’s primer. I will be continuing the day thinking about the information you included in this blog. Thx again for posting this one. ever your fan called rhonda

  55. lizzer

    Success… Having the luxury of spending time sharing what I’ve learned with people who will happily give me money to get that information in a way where their lives can light up, and THEY can feel successful. I want to be portable enough to be able to go be with my family, or go to a seminar where I can get even better at what I do, and offer more to my students.

  56. Rebeca

    My definition of success would be to put a smile on God’s face with my life. That what I believe, I say and what I do are in harmony and to enjoy the people that I love!

  57. Dear Marie;

    Thank you so much to be the way you are so humble,positive and happy!!! every end of the day is my success , every day we do a lot to fulfill everyone’s necessity and always we put our self at the end.
    My little nice Hailey told me not to long time ago that I was the most strong woman she ever know and from that day I keep that in mind and that is my success !!!!

  58. Jo

    Well I had a job that was fairly well paid – I guess you could say I was successful – and now I’m starting a coaching business.
    The weird thing is that after having lived by other peoples definition of what you had to do to be successful, I’m now struggling with the idea that I can be paid for doing something I enjoy. Can you believe that? It’s as if I’ve come to believe that in order to be paid for something you’re not allowed to enjoy it.
    Talk about messed up.
    Anyway, at least I’m on the path, even if there’s still a way to go.
    Encouragements welcome!

  59. LOVED this Q&A!! (as I do so many of them.. but it’s great to put pen to paper with this and really define what success means to each of us!!)

    My definition of success is having both the time & money to be able to have the choice as whether or not I sent my kids to daycare/private school/homeschool and to have the flexibility to be able to travel as a family and experience life together.

  60. Ah Marie. So nice to see you. Love your gorgeous hair. If I had hair like that I would think of myself as a success. And the clothes. Love the clothes. Used to have a vintage silk jacket with fringes. What a great dress. Well enough about you. For me success is feeling confident that I am in the right place at the right time – knowing that I made a difference in someone’s life. Check out my website, It is still a work in progress and the pic of me, well it isn’t me, but a stock photo put in by my web designer. Love you, love B-school. Thank you for being in my life!!

  61. Hi Marie,

    Success to me means doing my Remote Healing Energy Medicine work with the Archangels. There’s nothing like it in the world.

    No one could have told me I’d be doing the work I am today and had they, I would not have believed them! Can I just pinch myself. It only gets better and better as I redefine success for myself. Success for me is helping people all over the world with my work with the Archangels.

    Huge hugs. Your videos have helped me carve out the work I was born to do. Thank you Marie for all you do!

  62. Success is sharing blessings with others. Marie, for you and your organization sharing the gifts of warm personality, encouragement and business common sense, thanks!

    Be blessed!

  63. Success is being clear of what I want and need; taking calculated risks, following my passion and flowing with spirit.

    Success is loving myself and others intentionally; honoring intuition, cherishing emotions, being mindful of my thoughts, words, actions and reactions.

    Success is embodying compassion, being free of judgement, fear and attachment; fully embracing my own uniqueness and the uniqueness of others.

    Success Is knowing how to listen and when to respond. It’s surrounding myself with passionate, authentic, respectful, responsible, successful men and women who generously share the love, appreciation and abundance.

    Success is feeling grounded and centered during the most turbulent of times. It’s having the mindset, willpower and drive to push myself far beyond my comfort zone. It’s doing what I love, fulfilling my deepest dreams and desires. It’s living a life filled with unbridaled passion.

    Success is making a difference in people’s lives… respecting boundaries, feeling one with my Higher Self and surrounding myself with kindred spirits. It’s having patience, being flexible and adaptable — capable of spontaneously shifting directions when needed, while still maintaining focus on the ultimate goal.

    Success Is Being fully Awake, present in the moment. It’s the integration of body, mind, heart and soul… Feeling healthy, sexy and vibrant, loving my Authentic Self and living with a deep sense of purpose in life!

  64. I just love that quote by Maya Angelo. It really makes you look at your life and self a different way, allowing for happiness to be at closer reach 🙂

  65. Pirah Uqaili

    Success is when you are physically and mentally satisfied with your profession, your family and your own lifestyle,
    We are successful when we get the fruit of our endless efforts , when we get love and respect from others at all times

  66. Marie,

    I love this Q&A. My definition of success is feeling like I’m home in my own skin. That means I’m surrounded by friends and family that support me and encourage me to achieve my dreams. It also means that I am doing the work I came here to do, inspire others and help them achieve their goals.

    Right now I work on doing organizational psychology work and have a small coaching practice on the side. I absolutely love sitting across from people, in a group or 1:1 and hearing what is going on for them, asking questions about where they want to go, and helping them get there. I never knew that my greatest skill (listening) would serve me so well!

    I’d love to have enough clients to thrive, but that doesn’t take many. I know my purpose is to be of service to others in the way I described above and I love the work I do. That is my definition of success!

    p.s. Thank you for all you do!

    • I can so relate to this as I’ve had a successful business for 20 years yet feel as if the income level after 2 decades is not what it should be…meaning I’ve based my success on how much $$$$ I make rather than who I’ve become starting a business from nothing and that I am still reaping results from what I sowed 20 years ago! So you are so right on Marie that it’s not what we do but who we are and I would add that insight about keeping the end in mind, meaning the end of our life is another great point! So often we are looking at the end meaning the $$$ as well. Now too that I am a grandparent wow legacy shouts to me more than anything else so who I am and who I am becoming trumps the $$$ that follows the passion and the dream.

      • Great story Debbie,
        And think about this, kids and grandchildren don’t really look at the $$$ part, what they see is you doing what you love and being successful. That is a great example for them, not your bank account.

  67. Lynn

    I love this video’s message! I’ve always done what I wanted to do, been happy, & felt successful – never needed to start a bucket list 🙂 I had a bad period of a few years where I didn’t feel like this, but I’m heading back up to happy again. Seeing messages like this really help to keep it in mind! Thanks so much, Marie!

  68. To me successful people are those that live life by design.

  69. Jenna

    Success is individualistic. I mean it is different for everyone, at different times, for different reasons. But the one thing that engages success for everyone is that it contributes to self-worth. How inspiring to think that success can be defined in so many ways (other than money and fame)!

    Five minutes ago success was when my infant finally closed his eyes for his nap.

    For me, right now, success is believing in myself.

    I doddle between the beliefs that people are going to love what I create and why would anyone want to purchase what I market, after all they can do just as good of a job if not better than me. In the end, I have to realize that self-worth is what really matters, not what other’s think of my creation. Once that self-worth is achieved, then the tangible (ie. selling my work, likes on social media, marketing and networking) will reinforce what I already know to be true!

    Success is…??? What a wonderful question to ask yourself daily!

  70. #Work that Fringe.

  71. rosha

    Hi Marie
    The video was one of yours best. I loved Maya Angelou’s quote too.It was inspiring.
    For me success is having financial freedom along with mental peace of doing something which I love to do. Towards the end of the day I should feel whatever I have given/done is my best and that too without hurting any other person.

  72. Ann

    Success to me is following my calling in life (helping others be healthy and happy) and making enough money to enjoy life and give back to those in need.

    LOVE the rendition of “Begin with the End in Mind!” What do you want to accomplished during your life, not just this week or on this project.


  73. This was a real goodie – definitly a ‘tweetable’.

  74. I don’t believe that success is a specific thing, a certain achievement, or a single goal that I might reach. These are all individual pieces of what I use to build myself into a successful person.
    How successful I am in life cannot be completely determined until my life is through; because until that day I am always working on my next achievement.
    To identify a successful person by possessions or position immediately places a finite limit on what it means to achieve success. I haven’t met a wealthy CEO yet who feels they “made it” and now can stop trying to excel or continue to grow in some form or fashion. Does reaching “success” mean that life ends? Why would I strive for such a thing?
    I obtain stepping stones to success every day; and there are days when I fail to find these pieces of success for one reason or another…but because they are just fragments, failing to find them does not make me unsuccessful. Instead, what some may see as failure is, to me, just an additional opportunity to try again; perhaps in a different direction or from a different approach.
    My past made me rich and it also brought me to bankruptcy. Neither situation created a person that is unsuccessful. I still have not failed.
    How do I know? I know because I must identify failure to have the ability to recognize success.
    So failure is this; it only occurs if I completely give up and stop trying; and it doesn’t matter if I stop trying when I’m rich or when I’m broke. The money isn’t the identifier. If I stop, I failed.
    Everything else is one of my stepping stones to finding my next unique piece of success.

  75. Barbara Coe

    I love this subject and the quotes that were offered. All good. For me, success is being involved in creating the things that matter to me, which focuses on helping to make our planet more sustainable, that is, preserving the natural environment and the health and well being of people, which are the foundation for everything else, while at the same time assuring an economy that supports the livelihoods of people.

  76. Thank you for those wise words, Marie! It is difficult to see all sides of the picture when we are constatly bombarded with the six-figures business idea and we tend to forget what we really make our lives complete. Good to remember 🙂 Love that fringe!


  77. Honorata

    Success is finaly finding yourself, yours soul voice, your authentic and true self. Knowing and loving your life and people you love, seeing yourself as a miracle of creation in the universe. Simply living in harmony with your soul brings the happines that even in the worst circumstances will pull you up! Success is a life journey with no external award just pure enjoyment of each step.

  78. Success for me is one of the examples Marie mentioned. I want to do what I love and make a little money doing it. I want the freedom to create the business of my dream to help women find their unique sense of style and feel confidence in their clothes while still making plenty of time for my family and friends.

  79. Kyi Win

    Some value success in wealth and high ranking in their business.But for me I value success that having a peacful life with worry of financial problem.I don’t want to be rich but I want to possess a peaceful life having a dignified job ,doing my hobby, serving other welfares.Aims change according to the age level so I can’t say which is the best one for success.

  80. Success for me is helping people by doing what
    I love and gratefully loving every day of my life! 🙂

    • One thing I forgot, Marie:
      Awesome dress – you wear it so well!

      • First, thank you Marie for another great Q&A!

        My 2 favorite Success quotes are:
        The one you mentioned Marie of Maya Angelou
        and “Success isn’t about how much money you make; it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.” by Michelle Obama.

        Much love! xo

  81. I just love you! LOL! You are so adorbs, so upbeat, so positive, so happy, so everything I want to be. Thanks for being such an INSPIRATION to me and to everyone out there!!! You rock!!!!

  82. Geoff

    Great advise! Love the Quote, at the end of the line, it’s only you who decides if you enjoyed the ride or not!

    Ps. You look sexy as hell in this video! Enjoy that socal sun!

  83. Marie, this is wonderful advice! Stephen Covey was my first and still my favorite personal development author. “Beginning with the end in mind” is incredibly important – I think this is why people who have survived life-threatening illnesses and other traumas in life really understand where to put their priorities.

    Also – I’m loving the grey wig on your “old lady Marie” character. Perhaps you can start a new hair trend for those of us who are slightly more “mature” female entrepreneurs. 😉 ~ Sandi

  84. Success to me is living a purposeful , meaningful life and making it profitable too… there is so much energy in the fact that…we can make a choice. To live a meaningful life!

  85. I love Q&A Tuesdays! Terrific vid today. For me success is having enough money for what I need and some of what I want while not sacrificing myself on the altar of societal expectations. What that looks like for me is that I’m starting my own transformative life coaching business (with the help of Marie Forleo’s B School) that I’m doing as an entirely web based business using web video with my clients and working from home. I’m excited and feeling inspired by the possibilities life has to offer since choosing to live my life my way!

    Thanks for your beautiful insight and incredible delivery system Marie. What a great example to follow!


  86. Many years ago I was sitting at the kitchen table with my family and realized that for the first time ever, I wasn’t worried about how much milk they were drinking that evening! How exciting it was to know that I was making enough money to provide unlimited glasses of milk for my family! No more panicking if they filled the glass to the top or spilled some on the table. Can I have another glass? Absolutely! I felt successful…I was an awesome provider of milk!

    This past January, I quit my 11+ year career at a local bank to start my own life coaching business. I have just a handful of clients so far but I feel even more blessed and successful because I have a career that supports my favorite things! I sleep when I need to. I work in my pajamas. I have time to go to the bathroom during the day. I’m home for my children. I only work weekends when I feel like it. And I always feel like working weekends because I love what I do!

    Success is going to bed at night looking forward to tomorrow because you love, love, love what you do!

  87. Excellent clip this week, so glad I signed up to this newsletter from a friends recommendation

    I particularly like the definition differences between wall street and doing what you love, I gave up a very well paid safe job to step outside of my comfort zone and do not regret it for one moment with my private Reiki practice I am making positive changes to more people’s lives 🙂

  88. Marie, I LOVE you! Really I do. It’s like you’re always reading my mind. I go back and forth so much on what success looks and feels like to know – as there are so many measures. But I love your tweetable – and think that sums it up best. Thank you!

  89. Success is living the joy that is my spirit, my birthright. It’s when I see, know & feel that my life is aligned with my deepest purpose, the good that I came to bring to the world.

  90. Such a loaded question really. Success to me is if I feel I have done a good job. Whether that is with a client,a speaking event or a coaching call. I also feel success when I am living in harmony with some life/work balance. Sadly I do get caught up in the …. I will feel more successful when___________
    So my new thing is to really stay in the moment and enjoy it whether good or bad. In other words really feeling the feelings I am going through. Success is a journey not a destination.
    Thank you for the great insight. You ROCK!!

  91. My definition of success is getting to travel the world, all the time, having the freedom to do explore and feeling 100% financially secure. I want to be able to help – in any way that I want. I want to get to share my story and teach people what I’ve learned, so that they can get a little (or a lot of inspiration) I want to be able to produce content regularly – content that inspires and lights people up. I want to get to connect with spiritual teachers and leaders.

    I want to get to collaborate with people who inspire me. I want to write books. I want to make at least 1 movie and 1 documentary. I want to take people to amazing places in the world and help them transform their lives, help them see the beauty of the world and to be forever changed so that they live life differently. I want to inspire people to find their soul purpose and find true inner peace.

    • We should get together on the road and make a video 🙂 I like your answer!

  92. Marie, I love you and the fringe dress! I defined success for myself about a month ago. Before defining it clearly, it had been to become famous and make a lot of $$. But when I really dig deep, its this:
    1. Being around things, places, people that I enjoy/replenish my soul.
    2. Doing the things I enjoy and having the time to do: Travelling either with baby and husband or on family vacations (coastal vacations), Being by the ocean with a good book and a margarita, spending quality time with my hubby, intentionally spending time to connect with my kids regarding their hopes, desires and dreams
    3. Following my morning and night time routine and teaching the value of spiritual tools to my kids.
    4. Personal growth, doing things outside my comfort zone, overcoming my fears, learning new things, strong mindset, healthy habits everyday
    4. Following my mantra of Progress, not perfection

  93. Being content and excited with what you’re doing and what you have. Knowing that there’s always room for improvement and being enthusiastic about making those improvements in order to see the things in your life continue to blossom. ;0)

  94. I love that Claire wrote in! I am always trying to be that supporter for my friends to think about how they feel and whether they are being fulfilled TODAY instead of working toward “magazine success.”

    My ideas of success is having enough cash flow to do what I want with my friends and family while having all of my health and community giving covered (things like my zoo membership!) My success is having my time managed so that work/my passion is fulfilling and leaves me feeling free. My success is having my life choices determined by what my partner and I want instead of dictated by what others need from us.

    Thanks for your support Marie! You are a fabulous influence and so much fun!

  95. Hey Marie!
    What a great video. You always make me smile. I know this sounds a bit odd to many, but success to me is helping others to the best of my ability. I paint as therapy, and share that with the world. I also make jewelry and share that. I try to find locations to sell my works, and then I donate a portion of the proceeds to help others in need as well.
    My vision of success is to keep doing what I do. Only now to keep at least 50% to help me as well. If I keep donating 100%, I just won’t be able to keep helping others. I won’t be able to afford it. I hope to one day have a team like you, so that I will be able to help causes and non-profits more.
    I’ve learned from many inspiring souls that I can dwell on what my past did to my body and soul.The side-effects from brain surgery that I suffer with, or I can strive to be like others.You are one of those inspiring souls. Kris Carr, Oprah Winfrey, Lilou Mace,Ellen DeGeneres, Violette Clark, Lady Gaga and many many more inspire me daily.
    Thank you so much for being a inspiration to not only me, but many who truly need a gentle push in the right direction. I often wonder if I’ve gotten in over my head, but then, I watch you, smile and remember if there is something that I need help with I can always hire someone if I absolutely have to. I may not get there today, but someday I will. You have no idea what your helping means.

  96. Sarah J

    Thank you Marie for this video. This is a big question !! I come from a social environment that defines success such as working a lot to do a lot of money in order to buy a house and then (I guess) getting married and having kids. It doesn’t sound like pretty scary but for me, it’s just so much pressure. I am only 28 but I think I am currently doing my “mid-life” or thirties crisis seeing the 30th birthday arriving. I don’t want to continue that kind of life, I want to get old and to be proud of myself, to have done what I care for, what is really important for me. Success for me it’s just being myself, being happy and grateful for each day every night at bedtime. Success is being able to take time to be myself, and also to do what I love to help people. I am thinking of completely switching my life from being a busy engineer to a naturopath that listen carefully these customers to help them improve their own everyday life, to educate younger people who are the future of tomorrow, etc. I also want to be my own boss, to manage my time and to challenge myself to succeed in the way I want. The thing is I am scared. Yes, I am scared of others opinions… living a big and secure job to an insecure job is not always well received. So time to reflexion is still there. I hope I am going to take the right decision.
    Thanks again Marie for what you do, for your daily inspiration.

  97. Pierre Itoumbou

    Success to me is, be able to fulfill or help people around me; my parent, friends,neighbor and my community. And be able to afterward to enjoy the company of someone special by me, fulfill her desire, her need and above all, keep a clean relationship with my God.

  98. Sandra Hoeffner

    My idea of success has changed over the years. At first I thought it was about the job, the money, and the things you owned. Now I realize that success is about knowing who you are and being content with that. It is also about what you do with who you are because I really believe that for us to be successful we also need to share with others. I have always wanted my presence in other’s lives to leave a footprint on their lives as well as them leaving a footprint on mine.

  99. I define success as this and only this: Being truly happy.
    If being truly happy requires 3 months off a year to travel, and all weekends off so you can see your family, than you are successful if this is what you are doing and you are getting what you need out of it. Some people don’t care what the job is they do as long as it gets them the things they value most: time, money to support their family and remain debt free and take vacations, etc. I respect this and often wish this was me.
    Some people (like me) can’t do jobs that don’t speak to us. So for me, working a great high paid job with plenty of vacation, even at a place that has a cool climbing wall and awesome benefits and 401k won’t make me truly happy. What I value most is seeing the world, experiencing the world and travel, and being able to use my mind creatively to create. To keep learning new things every day, to keep pursuing big life goals outside of just the job that pays the bills. To work and utilize all my skills to their fullest capacity, rather than limiting myself to what I am asked to do by others.

    I need freedom, flexibility, challenges, and ownership over my living to be happy. I need time to spend with friends and family. I need physical fitness and outdoors and beautiful surroundings. I need not to be in an office (even a home office) all day long 5 days a week. When I get these things I’m a better person, better sister, better daughter, better citizen, etc.


  100. Success is personal fulfilment, that wonderful elevating emotion that is an affirmation of self. Being a writer, the process of writing is fulfilling and then when one is recognised, that is the biggest thrill of all.

  101. Cliff Jn louis

    Good day to you Marie i appreciate the opportunity to share my definition of success out in the open ,my definition of success is being able look back at time with a sense of purpose and great achievement knowing that i have accomplished my dreams by being the blessing i am destined to be in lives of my family and humanity,i have purchased this dream home for my family , so we could spend quality time ,relaxed and free our minds from the reoccurring monthly house rent bills,we are now able to travel and take vacations as we desire ,to explore and learn about the different cultures and wisdom, i am thankful that i have re united my family.

    Building homes for the homeless,assisting the poor and under privilege in my environment and island with clothing, food ,health care,assisting the elderly and the disable that are and have been placed at the different day care institutes by delivering my assistance in remitting new beds ,new bed sheets, toiletries,food, clothing etc.i am thankful for everything

  102. Deanne

    I Feel the ‘high five’ of success when I help someone who is unsure and lacks confidence to achieve something important to them. I love letting them use the confidence I have in them for as long as it takes until they see enough success to have their own confidence. I love giving them ways of thinking, habits that lead to any success, teaching them to brainstorm where to get the info. or skills for their next step, and gently ‘forcing’ them to take scary steps toward what they want to be able to do. I love cheering for them when they challenge themselves even a little. When they accomplish their goal and no longer need me I FEEL SO SUCCESSFUL!!! When I am the wind beneath someone’s wings I feel as though I am the one who gets to fly!

    I hope 1016 is my year for B-School. I think my body, mind and spirit would EXPLODE with joy if what I do for genuine love of people also paid the bills.

  103. Success as it occurs for me is never working a day in your life! Doing what lites you up and being clear on “why you do what you do”. being with the love of your life and sharing your dreams together. Having a say each day on how your life goes and taken the action consistent with what matters most to you. Love, peace and happiness and being complete.

    • Anna

      My all time favorite episode of Marie TV!!! I also love reading what everyone replies as success to them. I had a lifetime career that I loved but for health reasons now have to move on. While I loved my work, what sucked the life out of me was the politics of businesses large and small that I worked in. So now I’m out on my own and not defining my success and happiness by money, though it’s a quandary because running out of money will not allow me to keep searching, so I have to do some finding as well. I’ll keep writing on this subject and see what develops. Can’t use computer too much since I have a brain tumor that causes me eye pain and arm pain but I have other capacity. Legs that work, left arm that works, brain that works and muscles at the corners on my lips that help me raise them in smile. Thanks Marie and everyone else who shared their dreams, ALL so inspiring.

  104. Dan

    Dear Marie, This is SUCH a great question. Its the sort of question which I relish answering because I know my answer is going to be so much more interesting than my normal view of success. and i guess this is the whole point, we are submerged by living in ways the more intelligent part of us wants nothing to do with yet this superficial part is such a big part of us.
    So for me just now success is……Being here now, being present…. and i didn’t know i was going to write this , but i can’t think of anything more fulfilling

  105. Rob

    I’ll be a copy-cat of Diana, who said success is:
    1. Making art / Being creative
    2. Helping those that make the world better / or Helping unconditionally and indiscriminately
    3. Regular relaxing days with friends and family / Maximizing Love!

  106. Success is waking up *almost* every day with a smile on your face and a spring in your step, knowing that you are going to enjoy doing what you love.

    LOVE this – thanks Marie #HUGS

  107. Ah…the million dollar question. What is success? I feel successful each time I can respond to an unsavory situation without losing faith that all is well, that everything in this moment is working toward my highest good and that in hindsight, it will become clear why it needed to happen. I feel exhilarating success when I push through sermingly impossible circumstances and experience things working out in my favor, even in the face of logic. I know I can only feel this successful when I follow my own rhythm and do not compromise with my intuition. For me, the evidence is in. Success means never losing faith in your greatest vision or intuition!

  108. Success means being an entrepreneur and never having to wear pants 😉

  109. To me success is to live a balanced life, that considers all of the aspects of being human: love, family, health, career, wealth, creativity, social life, spirituality, rest, fun, etc.

  110. I feel an amazing sense of accomplishment when people go crazy nutso with excitement over my food! All the while knowing every bite is good for them in every way possible!

  111. For me success is sharing my gifts.

  112. abby z

    i think this topic is so important! too often people view success only in their own terms and don’t realize that many have definitions other different than theirs. for many of us, money isn’t everything, and this is often over looked in terms of being successful. recently coming out of a sales career, i was never the top seller, but always in the hunt… i found that my relationships with my clients and my integrity were more important to me in terms of my success. if that meant i didn’t push an outfit that wasn’t best, or made sure that loyal customers got the best deal, that made me feel better about the service i was providing. i also wanted to have a life i loved outside of the store, which meant drawing on line on how much extra time i spent at work. i never felt like i missed the mark if i wasn’t #1… i was #1 to the people who matter most to me.

    and i love the fringe and the “halle-frickin’-lujah”!

  113. Hi Marie,
    LOVE this episode! Success to me is doing what I love to do and having creative and financial freedom doing it. Having the time to spend with my family as well as impacting & helping as many people as possible.
    ps- love the fringe dress :)!

  114. Success to me is waking up in the morning knowing the day is mine to fill with creative writing, connecting with writers who need help, and earning enough to give back to those in need.

    Success is leaving the workforce and working for myself. Although I don’t need millions of dollars, I would like to never have to worry about money again.

  115. Heather Clarey

    Hi Marie

    My definition of success is loving whatever it is what you are doing. Sharing your passions with others for their growth. Being a loving mother, sister, girlfriend, wife and friend. Lifting others up when you can without sacrificing your own personal space and energy. Helping others in need. Adding value to this world. So when we do leave, we are happy and proud of our lives. Our children are happy and fulfilled with what we shared with them:).


  116. Success to me is to be able to work from anywhere in the world, which gives me the freedom to travel, and to be able to express myself in my business.

  117. Mary

    Dear Maria

    I love this but sometime when you feel you haven’t achieved what you want in your work life, it is very miserable and draining. I try to look at my other blessings but believe me I feel that however hard I worked, obtain academic qualification, experience, i haven’t managed to achieve above the average salaries and positions. I feel that I am creative and have good ideas as well. But feel always overlooked. taken advantage of and sidetracked. What should I do?
    Many thanks

  118. laura in LA

    Just joined the site to say welcome to LA!

    Also, yours was one of the few much-needed messages I got in my inbox today, so thanks for that.

    Success for me is in doing small things, overcoming obstacles and depression on a daily basis.

    (Sunlight helps.)

  119. GC

    I had and still have different ideas of what sucess is – and its mostly been around money – having lots of it.

    And I am still torn about it and struggle with this from time to time. But reading through everyones definition of sucess – Here’s mine:

    – To have a business that is run remotely
    – To have time to spend on a daily basis and school holdiays with with my pre teen kids and hubby and not feel rushed and preoccupied all the time
    – To be able to travel the world and experience different cultures
    – To not have to think about money to pay my mortgage, go shopping, go on trips and big holidays
    – To provide children in low socio-ecnomic schools with breakfast and lunch
    – To have recreational places around low socio-ecnomic areas for pre-teens and teens to hang out, feel safe, fed, cared for, worthy and motivated to achieve in life.

    The fog is clearing!!!

    Loved this exercise

  120. Love the fun fringe.
    And this 5 minute video FULL of value & finesse in Marie Forleo delivery!!!
    girl ya got it down!
    My A 2 ur Q

  121. Angelica

    Success to me is loving what I do and being known as the BEST mom and wife…Thankful that my husband already thinks I’m pretty awesome and we are having our first baby in April. I also consider success working on bettering myself either through reading or online classes and just enjoying what my brain gets to meditate on. 🙂

  122. First of all I love the fringe! And where can I score a dress like that? 🙂 As far as success, I’ve always believed it has to do with how happy you are in life and how many amazing people you spend your time with. The most important part of life is human interaction, so for me I am successful because I have great friends and a great support system! Thanks for listening.

    • Hey Loretta! Glad you like the dress. It is made by 5th and Mercer 🙂


  123. Leaving big corporate projects behind, I now find success in the kind, collaborative conversations that well up in the “space between us”. Meetings are intimate, casual… Success plans for deadlines that are preceded by thoughtful scheduling, where everyone’s best work can be pursued. Hard work is not precluded, but held by healthy parameters of proper rest, physical movement, and time for enjoyment in other areas of life.

  124. dcm11

    But Marie, what happens when you are torn? What happens when you feel you have spiritual success, but not business success? Here’s my scenario:
    To me success means feeling at peace with myself. Waking up every day to write something in my blog that will inspire and help others. Having location freedom to pick up and go whenever I want. Spending quality time playing fetch or walking with my furry babies. Working on something whether doing makeup, hair or conceptualizing for a shoot, for a bride or a show. Spending time with my husband and my family. Enriching my life by learning something new in this case B-school, a photography and photoshop course. This is what I call my spiritual success. But what happens when the business side isn’t going as well? I’m lost.

  125. Having recently faced and miraculously overcome a terminal illness at the last hour, I faced death and all that comes with that- such as writing my own obituary. Talk about a wake-up call.. I realized that I’d not yet done all that I wished to accomplish in my life. Now, with a second chance to accomplish those things on my bucket list, I am focused on making sure I do those things, so when my obituary is written by me or someone else at the end of my life, it has the things I did in there that I truly want to have done in my lifetime. I also realized though that the most important thing in life is to be happy. If you’re truly happy, then in my book you are successful, as to me that is the most important thing to accomplish and maintain in life.

  126. OMG! NO WAY!
    This is exactly how I feel. We are moving cross country to NC in 4 weeks (eek!) and we have no jobs, no place to live. We want a slower pace of life, a home with a porch, – we are leaving Orange County CA, the capital of “I must outclass you in every way possible.”

    I am making zero money right now and I don’t want to make millions. I want enough to contribute to my family and take a vacation once a year. Yep, little old lady on the porch…HERE I COME! 🙂

  127. Success = To smile forward. The ability to smile and mean it and to carry that smile forward to change the path of someone else’s day. xo HollsBarksFitness

  128. Love your fringe flag, Marie! A few months ago I had to answer the same question and gave this answer (I still believe in it): ”for me, success means being able to do what you want when you want to, to create and pass on what you’ve learned”. It’s a bit general, I know, but it allows the specifics to evolve with you.

    Thank you for being so awesome!

  129. I am 65 years old and still re-defining myself. The definition of “Success” has changed for me many times over the past 45 years as I have matured and moved into different phases of my life. Sometimes just reaching the end of the day still breathing was deemed a success! I learned to set very small goals for myself that I knew were achievable, and then celebrated in some small way. Now my focus has changed, no longer “working”, newly widowed, I have a new measure of success: Did I make (even a tiny) difference in someone’s (anyone’s) life today? That is my success, which in turn makes me happy which in turn makes me feel grateful for the opportunity. A meaningful life is created by connecting to other people.

  130. My definition of success has changed within the last couple of months!

    I have always been a super overachiever, had to have 30 things on my plate and be on tons of committees because I was going to conquer the world! Unfortunately, I was setting myself up to loose because I made my goals unreachable. So….. my definition of success at 50 are very different than at 20!

    Success now is waking up and thanking God; nurturing my 20 yr marriage every day so we can continue to look at each other & be in love; raising my 3 kids (16;23;28) to be loving, responsible, passionate about life and giving citizens of the world, being able to create designs that transform peoples lives with every project I do and writing, dancing and laughing with friends and family.
    Its more about God, loving myself, loving the people that come into my life daily, health, laughter, and designing spaces that truly transform lives!

  131. This was amazing!!!
    It helped me see that I was actually holding myself back in my own photography business because I didn’t really care about the *huge, big-money, success* that I saw others chasing.
    It seemed empty and a little stressful to me.
    I like simple, I like solitude, I like wilderness.
    ‘Moments, not things’ is my favorite little hippy-like quote.
    It felt disingenuous to market myself. Which I know is true for many artists and creatives.
    But there’s no other feeling like the ‘zing’ when I feel something creative about to happen, when a connection is made, when an idea is shared, or when I photograph something that brings tears to someone’s eyes.
    It’s like I see the world through a different lens, but I’ve spent way too much time comparing myself to others.
    Success for me would be defined as boldness in sharing with others how I see the world, and putting value on it – that others even need to see my unique perspective, that God might use it to heal their heart, to lessen their pain, to bring joy to their circumstance. Success is in the prayer I pray before each photo session, “Spirit of God, guide me to capture the moments that not everyone sees, that cannot be posed.”
    Thank you, Marie, for helping me see my value in business from my own definition of success that I never saw before. I always knew I was different, maybe even liked it, but now I’m more excited than ever to move forward and not hold myself back anymore!

    • Georgia Kontogiorge

      Practising humbleness <3
      Giving yourself permission to be ALL of you <3
      Practicing Love as much as you consciously can <3

  132. Marie,

    I love your perspective and I think that you will completely harmonize with mine. I just recently redefined success. I have been Active Duty in the Air Force for almost 9 years. In my latest book, Perception: The World’s Most Affluent Leader, I spoke of a retired Chief Master Sergeant with 31 years in service (who initially attempted at re-arranging my path from separating the Air Force to pursue my purpose), then reverted everything when he realized that he was not only telling me a lie by saying stability is the best, but he had also lied to himself. He lost his family and his dream while attempting to secure stability in the continuous sacrifice that defending the country requires.

    Since that interaction with the Chief, I have redefined purpose to mean “the fulfillment of your Divine assignment”. Deep inside, we all know what the divine assignment is, but it may sound weird or funny, and at times impossible. No one lacks (spiritually, relationally, physically, or financially) who fills their divine assignment and petitions their Source for their needs.

    • I love this!
      Beautifully said: “the fulfillment of your Divine assignment”. . . being in step, in sync, in harmony with what the Spirit of God is already doing in your life and leading you to – that’s exactly how I feel and no other place I’d rather be.

    • Eamonn

      “The fulfillment of your divine assignment” -I’m going to remember this one for sure! Thanks Tiffany!

  133. Marie,

    I love seeing your weekly videos and any other coordination that you do to empower others. I also feel mutually assigned to serve others thru empowerment with my own innovative twist. I just recently redefined success. I have been Active Duty in the Air Force for almost 9 years. In my latest book, Perception: The World’s Most Affluent Leader, I spoke of a retired Chief Master Sergeant with 31 years in service (who initially attempted at re-arranging my path from separating the Air Force to pursue my purpose), then reverted everything when he realized that he was not only telling me a lie by saying stability is the best, but he had also lied to himself. He lost his family and his dream while attempting to secure stability in the continuous sacrifice that defending the country requires.

    Since that interaction with the Chief, I have redefined purpose to mean “the fulfillment of your Divine assignment”. Deep inside, we all know what the divine assignment is, but it may sound weird or funny, and at times impossible. No one lacks who fills their divine assignment and petitions their Source for their needs.

  134. Georgia Kontogiorge

    I’m sorry I just reply-bombed someone due to my not so savvy tech skills of leaving a comment 🙂

    Practising humbleness <3
    Giving yourself permission to be ALL of you <3
    Practicing Love as much as you consciously can <3

  135. Hi Marie,

    I see that you are quoting Stephen R. Covey’s “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” when you refer to “begin with the end in mind”. Looks like a good read…

  136. Bruce

    I think sucess has more to do with personal feelings than thoughts of money or reward. When I come home from driving my route, really tired ,but feeling emotionaly happy, this is SUCESS!
    I am 79 plus and driving truck several days a week.

  137. Inspiring as always, thanks

  138. My idea of success is influencing people to contribute to a “clean-up” of our “mass subconsciousness,” which influences people to grow big egos and not realize that we are all one family of humans!

  139. Marie, I love that you called out the “only”! Language has power to create and to destroy. A little mindfulness goes a long way, including in the process of “fleshing out” whatever the details are.
    “Success” for me is freedom. My company’s theme for 2015 is “Freedom.” I cannot image any area of life where freedom doesn’t matter.
    Love your show M. Much gratitude.
    Jan Deelstra, Women’s Empowerment Life Coach & Transformational Author

  140. nancy

    Hi marie….love the fringe…lovin the fringe….nice ..actually I love all the dresses you wear…always so colorful and sharpe! thanks for the continuous inspiration as well with Q & A Tuesdays….success to me is the same a maya angelou….but finding happiness as well within yourself and being able to weather the storms that come in life and keeping a good attitude while in the midst of the storm!

  141. Success is being with myself in the moment rather than looking back [at mistakes or better times] or looking forward [at failure or better times] too often. When I can centre myself in this moment, relationships, work, exercise, thinking all just come a lot easier.

  142. Baiba

    Hi Marie!

    This is another subject which I haven’t thought about…success is freedom and independence to me also to spend quality time with my son each day is the biggest success for me.

    Many thanks for this video x

  143. Christine B

    I was one of those that was asked “does the world need another ____”. My rebellious personality said Yes. The world didn’t have me yet. So I plunged into a business that was unheard of for a solopreuner. I knew many people around me were watching me to see when I would fall on my face or butt. That made me more determined to be a success. After many years of monetary success (but not realizing it), I am now able to sit back and say with a sigh of relieve…been there, done that. Bought the Porsche for the hubby, traveled first class to vacations, paid off the house and more importantly to me, being able to quench the thirst of giving to the homeless . That was success as I wanted it and yes I worked at it through blood sweat and tears and not having a lot of modern education or skills. Today, I’m after a different kind of success…the one that I really want is to be helpful and productive to humankind while continuing to make money. I am hoping Marie will help me achieve this with her knowledge – the rest is up to me.

  144. Hello Marie,
    thanks to give us the chance to espress ourselves here! I’m from Italy and I’ve been following you since I found you, a couple of months ago; you’re very inspiring and talented!
    My idea of success is creating something just mine that can represent who I am, and hopefully can add quality to people’s lives. I love movies and I’m studying and working as filmmaker, actress and singer, and my great purpose is to become a storyteller, and be able to create stories (as movies, comics, books, songs or whatever) that can inspire people to bring out the best out of themselves, to believe in their dreams, to fight for a better world and a better future. This is my definition of success, my personal success. I hope to achieve my goal sooner or later; for now, I’m working hard to make this dream come true, and you and Oprah are my 2 greatest inspiration, so thank you again!
    Can’t wait to read next post and watch next video!

    Diletta from Italy xxx

  145. I love the quote that you used today Marie!
    Success is liking who you are, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. – Maya Angelou
    I have always resonated with “liking how you do it”
    Success for me is doing what I love and making a positive impact on people’s lives!

  146. K

    “All work is honorable”

  147. Success for me is living each day in alignment with my True Self. Thank you for this discussion.

  148. Success is creating valuable memories with the people you love, having the ability to wake up in the morning and be passionate for the day in your life that was given to you regardless of what is going on in your life, and valuing your health and soul.

  149. SUCCEED literally means to COME AFTER, so as long as your taking a step – any step – you are a success. Xxxxx

  150. Succes for me is being able to do what I love every single day and make enough money to not have to worry about money. That’s not a very concrete goal, so I’ll specify and say that I don’t spend much, I don’t need or even want a big house, fancy car, and fancy clothes. I just want to comfortably pay my rent, buy healthy food, and lots of yarn (I’m a passionate knitter). I also want to have successful relationships, so my job or business would need to leave time to be able to build and nurture those relationships every day.

  151. I think women have especially big struggles with this topic of success because we think lots of “supposed to’s” about our lives: we are “supposed to” have children, get partnered, have a career, take care of our aging parents, etc. etc. We also consider how far women have come over the past several decades –and the desire to both push forward to creating equality in pay while honoring our femininity–built in since forever. I think of a line from a Walt Whitman poem I adore–and it’s over my desk: “Dismiss whatever insults your own soul/And your very flesh shall be a great poem.”
    I think it’s all about authenticity. Thanks, Marie; your tv is always so thought-provoking; it’s what I’ve loved for over a year about what you do.

  152. Carol Prendergast

    I like that quote from Maya Angelou too. I think taking action on what you’re passionate about will get you where you want to be. Dreams are one thing, making it a reality is another, and believe in yourself, don’t worry what others will think about you or your idea, have faith and trust, your higher self will guide you

  153. OMG! That was so on point! I grow in a house hold where my mom and my siblings would aways tell me you can’t do that! That’s crazy! Stop being a dreamer and get a real job! A job with security and benefits! Those words ring in my head all the time until now! I declared my success and Today I’m doing what I love! I have my own buisness work from home and live my passion by making a difference to others! This is a great message for our children and young people too! People put so many limitation on our children! Love you Marie for reminding me who I AM!

  154. This is one of my favourite episodes! MY def of success is being surrounded by the people I love, creating everyday and making an impact through what I create. Serving people through this on a daily basis and being able to influence positive change = success!

  155. I just saw this quote on a calendar at my dentist’s office and took a picture of it:
    Strive not to be a success,
    but rather to be of value.
    ~Albert Einstein

    That really resonated with me and is a good reminder when I’m feeling drawn to be successful. 🙂

    • Eamonn

      Now that’s a great quote -thanks for sharing it!

  156. Verna

    Being committed to what you believe in creates success!!!
    On this basis “success” for me is being able to do the thing I love and enjoy to impact someone else life which helps to create a positive and lasting feeling of well being.
    Success is also being comfortable with who you are despite what others might think!!!
    We are all unique ….

  157. Love, love that dress! OMG. So 60s, so hot.
    Success is being creative, having good health and having enough money to live comfortably in the style you desire.
    Thanks Marie for another great video.

  158. Eamonn

    Nice to share thoughts & enjoyed the video-thanks! Also, love reading the ideas and comments from others on the blog 🙂

    I see success … is the pay-off. After putting time and effort into an endeavour you get success as a FEELING. Now I’m starting to learn that the feeling of success can be more fulfilling when we put our own uniqueness into a task … and for me, that can feel scary at times as standing out from the crowd is not something I’ve been taught/ encouraged to aim for in life.

    Many of the systems we’ve been brought up in (school/family/religion/media…) seem to encourage us to be like someone else to be considered a fit in. I guess in the end, great success comes from believing in yourself despite the obstacles on the way! Getting some kudos from others for a job well done …well that’s a nice bonus!

  159. I feel successful when I manage to lead with love. That is when I let love proceed thoughts and actions and when I consider options before taking action. This is tough for someone like me since my mind has a tendency to move around my brain like a pinball in a pinball machine. I know that I am on the right track if I fall asleep and wake up with a smile on my face.

  160. KatieCA

    Creating (writing!)…relating (friends and family!)…dancing (oh, yeah!)…

  161. Dancing Nancy

    For me success is the absolute knowing that you are being 100% authentically you and because you are offering your unique gift to the world, you are blessing others.

  162. Love the fringe!
    Love the Maya quote. My idea of success is taking something I am passionate about and turning it in to a business that allows me to Travel and give my kids experiences that with enrich their lives.

  163. so I have a question my name is Cole Holland and I don’t know what business to pursue my dog walking which I could grow threw the program as of right now that is where my income is coming from to support my living or do I go after my passion my writing I am very creative and Imaginative and I really believe I can be a success I love dog walking but its not what I really want to do in the end but I need some guidance on what way to go do I build my income with my dog walking business and build my business and write on the side or drop dog walking and pursue my writing

    • Why don’t you write about your exploits as a dog walker. Create a blog and share your experiences. You never know, it could become the next Seinfield.

  164. Prue

    Success to me is doing what I love, what does not feel like “work” although I am a hard worker and will do just that……..and do it with “my peeps”. I am nothing if not a “Sacred Activist” as a book with this title has been written. I care deeply for this planet. It is the “tribe” in my backyard that I am longing for. When I feel free to be me, support my family, connect to my Source and community, this is where Success by any other name would be Love and Peace for me. My heart radiates onto the planet when I am there. I long to find others who share the different way I see success.

  165. Hi Marie,
    The way I define success as making a living, a comfortable living doing what I love to do and supporting my beautiful wife who has multiple sclerosis and also supported my two beautiful cats. My passion is to draw pinup girls. And I have been fortunate enough to be able to share my art work with hundreds of thousands of beautiful women and their spouses. Drawing them has been as a sexy pinup girl has been the greatest joy for me. I embrace with each and every drawing is the realization that I am offering happiness to someone. I am creating something that inspires, brings happiness, excitement, and Joy to those to whom I paint and draw.

  166. That’s what i’m talking about…Have made the transition from TV Host to Spiritual Entrepreneur living where I want and helping people…success is all about enjoying my life while making a difference. SO luv ya Marie Blessings from Downunder/LA

  167. “Get clear and specific” is such gold.

    It has taken me a long time to come to the same conclusion that life is blissful just exactly as it is right now. I have fun, I see clients and I earn money whilst enjoying a solid relationship with my soulmate of 33 years and am present to my two young adult children.

    love life xx

  168. I love your take on success, Marie! Success is as happiness – everyone has their own definition. But, it’s a bit hard to stand by your definition when your mom dreams of you getting a corporate job and you just want to create a happy life for others through creative writing….

    I completely support the writing exercise you recommend, I would even double it and say that writing down my own life goals (my life to do list) has helped me define what I want my life to be.

    For me, success is continuously learning and improving myself in the direction of what I want to be. Cheers!

  169. thuli

    Hello Marie,
    I love your shows and I listen to you every (most) times, you have contributed so much motivation and inspiration in my life. As a mother of three kids single studying and working I feel like my life was left some where twenty years ago, when I got divorced. I have a passion for fashion design, and studying to be an accountant. I spend 4 hours travelling and it’s not easy, I try to use that time by reading and meeting people. I believe I shine, but deep down in me I feel like it’s not enough because financially I am challenged and the breakthrough seems to be taking years now. When I finish my studies this year I want to start a school of fashion but I don’t seem to get the time to even do that. Please help

  170. This is such a great reminder that success is what we make it and most of all, it’s what makes us happiest. Last year I ditched the high paying professional job for casual work and study. This has since turned into very casual work & freelance writing. I love writing and blogging. But because my income is much lower, hubby doesn’t celebrate the writing successes with me but expects I will some day return to the high paying career. Hopefully he is on board soon with where my passion lies.

  171. Jana

    Success to me is learning from every moment in your life. Tripping, stumbling and falling down are gifts. I have learned just as much from the “bad” as from the “good”. Staying true to your values. Giving without expecting anything in return. Doing your best. Teaching your children kindness. Leaving this world a better place than when you arrived.

  172. Bernadette

    When I moved into my new place I was attracted to a sign that says :Do what you love everyday. I bought it, read it everyday and believe that if I can connect with what I really love, no matter how big or small, everyday is successful

  173. Mara

    Well, for me success is to feel satisfied and fullfilled no matters what you do. In my case to have my own business but at the same time being able to work from home (with extra help of course;)))))in order to enjoy my children growing up, is the best i can ask for! Thanks a lot Marie for your words. You are so inspiring!

  174. Alan

    While I may have many different levels of success in different spheres, my Ultimate success phrase would be something along these lines…
    “Success is a Feeling of Total Freedom, because you can truly be yourself and do what you like, when you like and with who you like!”
    I have not reached it yet, however I am enjoying other successes along the way 🙂

  175. Success for me is definitely not about keeping up with the “jones'” as so many people think it should be. At the end of the day, I want to be able to travel. That’s really it–so long as I can cover my bills, take care of myself and my family and have some money to put aside to see the world and explore my own city, I’m successful.

  176. Success is creating a natural flow between providing something to the consumer market that improves lives and fueling a larger project that actively saves the world. —- Saving the world however you know how to do best.

  177. My definition of success is simply happiness. If you are happy with what you’re doing, I believe you’re successful.

  178. I love so many of these comments about success, very heartfelt and wise. I have been working for 8 years trying to get my business off the ground, and it’s been a challenge because not only was I introducing my product, I was introducing an unknown product into the market.
    In the end I realized what I wanted wasn’t just a matter of sales, it was a matter of people appreciating my art that was important to me. When I got off the sell the product train and got on I’m an artist train, then all of a sudden my business jump started.
    I have had solid orders for custom art since November. So I had to redefine success from my heart, before I could experience it both for my spirit and my bank account.
    My mother told me as a child, prosperity is being able to do what you want when you want. so I count myself as prosperous and successful. Yet it is human nature to want more, so that does not mean you are not successful, it means you are growing.

  179. Kelly

    Success to me is…
    spending quality time with my family and friends, time and location independence, financial stability, making an impact in society, making an impact in the environment, collaborating with others in my field and outside, and being happy doing what I am doing everyday.

  180. there are 3 things that I have experienced and left me saying to myself, “now that gets included in my definition of lifelong sucsess.”
    1.) receiving a payment from someone while they are crying tears of gratitude and joy.
    2.) leaving behind something that is uniquely done by you and treasured by someone else. (i.e., a painting)
    3.) being a part of something that causes a smile to ripple out into the universe.

  181. Sherry

    I subscribe to Real Simple’s “daily quote,” just for a bit of inspiration to start off each day, and this morning’s quote seemed particularly apt to this discussion:

    “Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion.”

    – Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos and many other successful companies, talented entrepreneur

    The things I’ve loved doing most in my life have been connected to my passions (writing, singing, music, film, TV, books, baking/cooking). I haven’t necessarily made much money doing them, sometimes none at all, but the reward has always come from the fun of it, the act of completing a project, meeting people who share my interest in it, and just the overabundance of joy I get in diving into these interests.

    I think part of the problem comes from society’s need to put a price tag on everything, and that’s not easy to do when it comes to creative pursuits. Even my well-intentioned parents wanted to know where the financial stability was in my wanting to pursue being a writer or a singer. That shook my confidence and brought forth negative thoughts like “what you love isn’t good enough if you don’t make money for it.” Even just writing short stories for fun, and meeting people through doing that, I got asked, “Well, why do it if you’re not going to try to make money from it?” Like there’s no value in a creative activity if you don’t make money from it. Like it shows you aren’t “good enough”at it if you don’t make money from it.

    To me, I think success will be in finding contentment in my everyday life, where I feel great joy in what I do and connect with others who feel the same. I don’t need to make a ton of money; sometimes I think that can be dangerous. I think I subscribe to the idea that they’ve talked about in the news sometimes, that there is a certain number that people would be content with, where it’s enough to pay the bills easily and have extra to do amazing things (travel, have some fun exploring in life, donate to charities and foundations, help others, etc.), but overall isn’t an excessive amount that can cause people to spend foolishly and recklessly beyond their means.

    These days success — financially, personally or otherwise — comes slowly to me, but I’m working hard to make the journey meaningful. (Obviously, yes, making money from my passions would be a wonderful reward, especially if it means not having to worry about bills from month to month anymore, but if it becomes all about money while the enjoyment of the creative pursuit gets lost in the shuffle, then what’s the point? That feels soulless to me, and makes me sad.)

    True life success to me probably won’t have anything to do with money. I believe it will have to do with the personal things I’m working on about myself (struggles with body image and self-esteem). If I can find ways to conquer that? Life will be amazing. That will be my biggest success.

  182. I love this video , thank you Marie, for me success would be having a nice house by the beach , create a dance room there to give my dance classes, having enough client to make it nice and fun . enjoy the sun rise and dawn everyday in the nature and beach, make kids dance , and travel around the world and share my wisdom with lots of kids and educators all around the planet. mmmm

  183. Great episode, Marie! Since I was seven years old, I’ve wanted to be a teacher. I’ve taught everything from inner city kindergarten to creative writing in prison. But in the last few weeks I’ve had a total paradigm shift. I asked myself, “what do I wish for my students.” My answer was clear. I would wish for them enough salary to feel secure, enough health insurance to feel safe, a sense of awe and joy in their existence, and a willingness to ask what they’re good at, what they love, and how they can use what they’re good at to serve what I love. I realized I haven’t been wishing those same things for myself. And the question became, if I wished for myself what I wish for my students, how would I live my life?

    That answer was clear, too.

    I’ve been vegetarian or vegan for nearly 20 years, and I have always loved cooking. It makes me come alive. So now, I’m finally taking it seriously. I’m writing a cookbook that will be published this year, and I’ve just launched my website, My mission is to provide ethical, plant-based options that will bring harmony to families when there is one vegetarian or vegan, especially when there is someone in the family who also has an allergy or intolerance. This feels right, and just giving myself permission to identify with this passion feels like success in and of itself.

    • Sherry

      Amanda, I tried that website name but the browser couldn’t find it. Is your website live online yet? I would love to check it out! Sounds like a great premise.


      • Hi Sherry,

        Thank you so much for checking out my website! I own both and I’ve heard there has been some trouble from folks who try so it must not be properly redirecting. Try and let me know what you think!

        • Sherry

          Just subscribed! (Definitely check into what’s up with the redirects – I was able to access, but not

          Looks like a fun and healthy website. (Except for cauliflower. I have hated it since I was a child. LOL.)

          I look forward to seeing your site fill up with yummy recipes!

          • Wow! Sherry, thank you so much! I’m just getting started so I would love any feedback you can offer. And if there are certain recipes, or things you’d like to see more of, definitely let me know!

  184. Dear Marie,
    I loved this video, per usual! I’ve been doing lots of thinking, reading, and listening lately in order to deepen my spiritual life and unlock the potential that is buried under the “not good enough” garbage that my inner critic lacerates me with on a daily basis. I’m planning to continue to work on softening–dare I dream eradication?–the voice that wears me down. My idea of success would be to live out of a reservoir of love instead of fear. The resulting freedom would allow other forms of success that are just beyond my reach. You are an inspiration!

    Thank you,

  185. Miranda Cunningham

    Success for me is making enough money to live comfortably while doing something that excites me and makes me smile and leaving time to enjoy my self and have adventures.

  186. Kerrie

    Hello Marie and community,

    I just think topics of this nature reflect an evolution of awareness. Maybe a person feels they can finally (internally) AFFORD to think in these terms- not making big bucks, or- for some of us, it really is having no drive to make any money at all.

    This worldly life is a convoluted affair, perhaps because a distinction within our species is now present.

    But how do we know these things?

    For example, are we at a place in human evolution where we have an individual choice to wake up to choose consciousness evolution, versus more massive species-wide evolutionary responses like higher reasoning development in the human brain?

    Yet, what about the simultaneous spontenaity of these kinds of responses? Why don’t we study our own species-wide patterns of yearning as an evolutionary trait? Where are our yearnings taking us? Why?

    I am interested in a world not encumbered by material considerations. One in which trust, beauty and freedom actually THRIVE because human consciousness is so beyond identification, tribalism, conflict, violence- the symptoms and suffering of ego.

    What about whole social climates proactively supporting fundamental interpersonal human safety, mutually unfettered respect- no exceptions, and the true nature of unconditional love actually flourishing for all, as a reflection of our successes in realizing such social climate qualities?!

    How do we get to the place where we can emotionally and psychologically assume these qualities of unconditional realization of our true potential, are “standard/normal” without having to pay attention? ; )

    This isn’t an aloof intellectual proposal or inquiry, but a real longing in the entire being- in this material form and in this plane of experience.

    Consciousness wants to know itself as conscious through each and every one of its expressions, variables, variations! That’s us, other animals, plants, birds, amphibians, fish, amoeba, cells and beyond!

    I can’t even begin to express the unconditional truth of (my) talents or capacities, gifts, skills and abilities in a consciousness environment that is so rife with every form of violence, from petty jealousy and jeering, to all out killing in its multiplicities of incinuations, forms, actions, implications, impacts…

    Homo sapiens are supposed to care for and about one another in this life! The moments we have in the form of the body are precious.

    I read this newsletter, and there are moments when some things point to higher awareness, but it all gets pulled back down into the density of material, finite thinking. Money and what getting it can do.

    I long for a community of courageous pioneers, with feet on the ground- and yes, enough material resources in the now, to support inner movement in the direction of waking up well- according to this moment of material assumptions; Every moment- w/o competitive “tediosity”.

    The truth is: no one is smarter, prettier, richer, got more, is more “successful”- EVERYONE embodies tangible and intangible value to express and share, whether conscious of the possibilities we each “have” or not.

    Just consider my response, weighing in.

    This is what a glimpse into one person’s life transition stage can look, sound and feel like- as a single, female pioneer, located in a socially remote corner, seeking employment in a market spectrum that doesn’t exist.

    I’d really like friends who are both courageously available, and intelligently unconditional, as well as, a job with which I can begin defining, expressing, proliferating this evolutionary consciousness into my health and well being, my daughter’s as she needs and chooses, with friends and through work- in support of our highest benefit out in the world.

    All I ask, is that after reading my responses written here- just breathe, move beyond reaction within, scan the body- notice both sensory/emotional responses, separate conscious awareness from identification.
    Then, respond if (you are) so moved.

  187. elena

    The grey hair at the end of your life…hahaha, that cracks me up. The vampy black bat-winged dress…to each her own! The message to define success for yourself is a start.

    I’ve been examining how some of us get stuck from a very different angle!!!!!
    What became IMPLICIT (forged or stamped) into our systems from conception to about age 2). Way fascinating body of research on this stuff. How does it apply to YOU? Take a look at this link and it will take out of your belief-bubble by one small increment.

    Your inquiring little old lady-friend, Elena

  188. My definition of success is happiness – with all the depth this implies. Wellbeing – a life of love and connection, meaning, a sense of accomplishing and contributing, engaging in your passions and interests, growing and learning, sharing.

  189. Hello Marie & Forleo team,
    My definition of success is to love and be loved by my family and 1 or 2 friends, be outside out of my comfort zone, and creating a life and business I want 🙂 No kidding!

  190. What is success? By definition we it’s all the things that we new know it isn’t ; wealth, fame, respect. The truth is we see wealthy, famous, and people we perceive to be successful all of the time. We see some of these people (not all) break the law, choose a path of drugs or abuse; is that success. Success I believe is an inside job; how empowered are you? Are being true to you? Or are you being a slave to perception (Instagram, Twitter).

    When stripped down from all of the noise and the stuff; who are you? There you’ll find the beginning of true success.

  191. Grace

    I love your videos and their honest messages. This video, “What Defines Our Success,” was awesome. As you mentioned, there are many things & people that can define “success,” usually in materialistic terms; your message that it’s up to each of us — not those around us, or circumstances around us — to define what that means.

    I once read a quote a friend/yoga teacher had posted in her bathroom: “strive to be so that what you think matches what you say and do.”

  192. Jerry

    My salutations to Marie…..a wise woman beyond her years.

    I define success as living fulling in the ever present richness of the moment.

    To quote quote Lao Tzu:
    “To now you have enough,
    Is to be rich.”

  193. Diana Lesmes

    “Success is wearing a loving and joyful attitude everywhere”.
    Diana Lesmes

  194. Michael

    Success for me is doing what I want when I want. Lots of yoga, kombucha drinking, meditating, time with friends, a few thousands of dollars a month in passive income and a living in beautiful house on the coast with my wife (whom I don’t have right now).

  195. Andy

    Success is what makes you develop a passion for what you do every day, you live it intensely with mindfulness!

  196. Andy

    Thanks Marie
    Your are Awesome!

  197. I believe that we all ask for and work toward the resources to meet that which we are trying to sustain. The interesting thing is, that aspect of our lives will change as we change and grow. My idea of success seems to change with that. As a single Mom, “success” was getting the three kids to a good baby sitter on time so that I could walk the mile to the bus stop BEFORE the bus left without me.Eventually, that daily activity became a BFA and a Masters Degree and I became a teacher. I was able to independently sustain that life that I felt my children deserved. For me, in that moment, THAT was success. Later in my life, after a spinal cord injury, “success” was getting to the bathroom by myself. Still, after all of the changes and all of this time, my definition of success revolves around my own personal concept of “that -which- I- am- trying- to- independently- sustain.” and the ability to achieve it. The empowering thing is knowing that nobody else can dictate that goal to me. Success, for me, is the ability to independently sustain the resources which make life worth living without harming myself or anyone else while allowing myself a little bit of room to share that experience with others.

    • Hi Sheila!!! Really love your words on sustenance here. I’ve been uttering that word a lot all week as I am beginning to use it as a compass for helping me to tap into the feelings I want to create and receive in my life. Awesome to see the concept explored here by you as well.

  198. You are such a breath of fresh air! Love this definition of success…..its going to be my new mantra :))

  199. For me success means freedom… Freedom to be my own boss, to be creative, to set my own schedule, to be myself, to use my talents and abilities in a way that best serves myself, my family and the people that are put into my path…

  200. For me…success is moving past my fears, insecurities, doubts. I must start believing in myself and self worth…knowing that we all play a very important role as if its a giant puzzle and and my piece or pieces are need to complete the whole.

    • Hi Paula! I really love your perspective and the interconnectedness you draw out. Lovely!

  201. Each time we improve ourselves to overcome our fear, obstacles, challenges that is time we success. Success don’t matter is big or small things, it all in our process of living. Each time we achieve goals that is time we success. Ask yourself what you need improve, what you want with all areas of your life. Your success is when you achieve them, anything in them.

  202. thuli

    @Sherry I agree with you, passion goes a long way, I think we are all successful creative and happy people, and this TOPIC and TV shows are a gift from the universe, to help us to self-realization and awakening. I wrote for the first time yesterday, I must say that after reading each and every unique definition of success I’m thankful that I live a successful life.

    • Sherry

      That’s fantastic, thuli! 😀

  203. Annel

    My definition of success is having the feeling of contentment in all your achievements & being grateful for it.
    I’ve been admiring Tony Robbins for his work and that’s how I got to know you when you did your interview for his new book “Money Master the Game” and what I admired you whilst watching it was your passion and courage in following Tony. Hence, it’s no surprise you have truly become successful in your path.
    Through the years I’ve been an average person and I do fulfill whatever is in front of me but the problem is I don’t progress and I don’t go beyond my potentials because I consider myself a coward and always fear of failing.
    Thank you for sharing your passion.

  204. Awesome topic. Success with no meaning is no success. Quitting the environment I worked in at my previous job and continuing doing what I love doing as a freelancer was a SUCCESS. Breaking away from feeling sorry for myself and living a purposeful life is SUCCESS. Achieving each goal I set it’s always a success because it is set with a plan. Watching MarieTV inspires me in so many ways; it inspires my spirituality, the roles I play as a woman in business, a mother, a wife and a daughter.

    I am forever grateful to have you as a mentor. May you continue touching many lives. God bless!

  205. Greg H

    Success to me is absolutely enjoying what I do and who I work with. It’s also having enough money to live the life I dream of living – which is a good life but not a hugely material one.
    I think it is super important here to highlight that money matters A LOT. Note I didn’t say a lot of money matters. I wrote that money matters a lot. I think sometimes we tell ourselves ‘Oh the money doesn’t matter’ or ‘Oh the money will follow if just do what I love’. Neither is true. It’s not only ok it’s necessary that when we ‘begin with the end in sight’ we factor in the amount of money we need and some clear ways that our plans can generate it.

    • Beautiful Greg! You’ve said a lot of things I’ve been thinking about lately. I’m also often finding that the things that bring me the greatest joy and depth of experience are free.

  206. Wow… what a great article…. my first visit here and i’m hooked. thank you.

  207. Bongumenzi

    Well I must first that I appreciate the inboxs I receive from this website. I started subscribing to this website about two weeks ago and I find everything here very profound.
    Now here is my comment on what my definition of success is. To me its about being content with who and what you are. Its when I can provide for myself and my family. Its feeling good about what you do and affecting the lives of other people for good.

  208. Anisa

    My idea of success is a creative business that inspires others to be themselves and taking time to travel and be myself at a bistro in Italy… often

  209. “Our true worth doesn’t come from the work we do, it comes from who we are as human beings” – BOOM! I love this! Going to tweet it now!

  210. Kay

    Hey Marie,

    First of all thank you so much for your advice! These videos are really fun to watch since you r personality is SO amazing and I love your sense of humor!

    I don’t even know if you are ever gonna see my comment which is at the every bottom TT but as a accounting major in the business school I am So Sick of being told that I should go to the Big Four, get a job in Wall Street, be a billionaire and hang out with finance people all the time. It’s not like a job in wall street sucks, it’s just I am under so much pressure to be a wall street person (pressure from my parents, my peers) that I begin to hate it. I know that I love some other stuff: photography, hip hop dance (I am also a hip hop dancer like you :)), entrepreneurship…. but I do feel my lack of courage to challenge the traditional/popular definition of success. I wish that I can start to be an entrepreneur and begin to execute my thoughts, but I am so afraid that I might fail and become a joke to my “Wall Street” peers.

    OMG … ok, so much for negative energy. Let’s have some positive conclusions: I like your videos, I am gonna keep watching them, I am gonna get a job in photography next semester and see if I love it; I am gonna start to plan my business and make sure to learn accounting and marketing knowledge that will be useful for my entrepreneurship plan; I am gonna start taking care of my skin and hair so they don’t look like a mess. That’s it. I am gonna go back and write this paper now…… see you next time!

  211. Hello Marie,

    I’m a new reader.
    I am so excited for this post, question and answer. It’s just like God put my words in your mouth and spoke them back to me! Your work does not = your worth. Your worth is who you are on the inside.
    Thank you for being a voice that speaks the truth about success and the different meanings it has to each and every person.

  212. Wow! This is really rockin’ my world. For me success is about feeling aligned, meaning that the what, why, where, who, and how are all held together in my expression of who I am.

  213. Tina

    Thank you very much Marie, for your advice. Thank God i watched your video today. Sometimes i felt like Claire. Now I’m so exciting to try all your advice. I really like your positive videos 🙂

    Success for me is using and developing my gift from God. After that, i want to give back to God, by living in God’s grace, and sharing what i’ve experienced to the people.
    And of course i want to get money for that too, for living, traveling, food, assets & donation 🙂

  214. Success for me is being able to swipe my card and not have a worry.
    Success for me is being happy everyday.
    Yes, money helps with this, but it’s not everything.

  215. Joe Simone

    I always believed that success is waking up where you want, with who you want, and doing what you LOVE every day.

  216. Nic Karandonis

    Hi all

    Success is different things to different people – I know that sounds like a cliche, but the reality holds. We’re all different; and we each place value upon certain barometers of ‘success’, tangible or otherwise. It’s a very subjective thing. I believe success is simply being ‘happy’ with who you are at any moment. It’s not necessarily a constant state. We aren’t happy all the time, generally speaking, and most of us don’t feel successful 24/7, but we are all works in progress, and the drive to improve oneself is surely, in its own right, a precursor to success on potentially many levels. Self improvement in any form = success. My humble take on what is a very interesting question.

  217. Liz

    I love your fringe. It is really nice when you move your arms. Claire has really touched a chord in my heart. I wonder how many people want to be happy, but don’t realize happiness is within.

  218. Success for me, would be something that I have yet to attain. And that is discouraging. I am a wife first, a mother to five second, a homeschool teacher third (to the same five, well… maybe not the 3 yr old so much), and a jewelry designer fourth. If I could just keep it all in balance, that would be success for me! Also, to be self-sustaining in my business, plus begin to be more profitable. My two eldest daughters (12 & 10) are also designers and if I can teach them how to be smart entrepreneurs even at their young ages, that would be success as well. Success feels elusive to me at the moment, but I will not give up. I will press on and not let doubt become the killer of my dreams.

  219. This is such an interesting and enriching topic for conversation!

    Success to me is fulfillment. I would feel like I have achieved success when I am self-fulfilled. I guess in more concrete terms, I feel successful when I have made a positive impact on another person. I’m a teacher and the most successful moments I can think of are the moments when I have a student experience an “aha” moment. I feel a deep vocational calling to make people think and reflect. I’ve always been the type of person to search for meaning in life which is why I teach literature. Success is sharing the knowledge that I’ve discovered and finding ways to continue delving into the knowledge that exists.

    But fulfillment does come in other ways for me too. I know that I want to have a family one day. I want to be more confident and comfortable with myself. I want to write. I want to be able to voice all of my desires without feeling like I have something to be ashamed of.

    I guess success is really complicated for me. It’s elusive because as soon as I experience a taste of success, I’m also moving on to another project or deep desire.

    • “I feel successful when I have made a positive impact on another person.” I love this, Jennifer.

  220. Dear Marie,

    The fringe are awesome. They moved along as you talked with your hands. The question this week was a good one. And you are right, they is no such thing as only. I completely agree with you when you say that you worth does not depend on what kind of job you have. I love that you share that message with such a big community.

    Best wishes,

  221. To me, success would be for people to see my work, love the message, and take it to heart. My prints are all about imaginative play and reading, something that’s a little lacking in today’s society. I’d love for this to be my full time job, that covers my expenses and gives me and my family a little “play” too.

  222. This was more timely for me than you’ll ever know. I’m retiring from the corporate world on March 31st – am 65 and have worked all my life since I was 16 to provide “security” for myself and my family. Now it’s my turn. I began building a new business (Isagenix) a few months ago. While I understand that to have a successful business with this company – successful being making as much money as you can and work it, work it, work it – I will be happy just making others feel as healthy and well as I feel now regardless of how much money I make. Don’t get me wrong – social security doesn’t go that far and any extra money will be nice. But after working it, working it, working it for over 40 years – I want to do what I want to do when I want to do it for the rest of whatever years I have left in this life. And that doesn’t mean working my butt off every day to make more and more money. I have dreams of crafting, volunteering for things I think are important, and making my home a warm and inviting place for people to be. Whew – thanks for letting me get that off my chest – it’s long overdue.

  223. feldman thomas

    My definition of success is live a fullfilling holistic life…being in the present moment, making love to life, being free to do it everywhere, every time with everybody, travelling all around ,the world and meet great landscape, have a lot of friends and be cool…love a wife and honor her and share a lot of love…being present for others, have my little secret garden and be……happy!

  224. Imagine having a conversation with your father before he dies and realizing that he was dying with feelings of failure. This conversation occurred over 20 years ago and now, I fully appreciate and comprehend it’s lesson. It is the simplicity of a feeling and sometimes, that comes in knowing what you don’t want. I have searched for success in all of the wrong places. Success is nothing more than a feeling. For me, this is profound. It allows me to feel success in anything and in everything. Everyday I get to wake up and decide what I get to do, be or have with either feeling successful or feeling failure. I choose success. I want to live my life so when I die, my conversation will be about the successes. My Dad was a great, great teacher. He helped me understand what I don’t want which can be just as powerful. Without the contrast, I would have never made it to this point. I am success!

  225. I have a blue car named Smurf, and I just bought white paint last week to paint Smurfs on it! I’ve had it since I was 15!!!! (And I’m definitely a little funky like that).

    In a line to a new song that I have just written, I say….

    “I believe in the possibility of creating a life-sustaining society,
    But some things have got to change
    Our values, our minds rearranged…
    Our definition of success
    Will be measured in our life-giving progress…..”

  226. My definition to live a successful life is to be with your family whom you started to build by marrying the one you love and whom you promised to love forever. Living with them peacefully, happy and healthy. Even in the absence of financial wealthiness, the joy is still there because complete, peaceful and healthy family is priceless. And these means successful life for me.

  227. Lindsay

    Hi Team Forleo!

    I have a question. I am looking into life coaching but it seems that the people who have the best chance of success are those who have legit training through a program of some sort. The only problem is they are so expensive! I want to get my hands dirty and make sure it is something I would LOVE to do before I spend good money to go through a program. Must you be formally trained to begin a successful life coaching biz or can I save it for down the road?

  228. Thanks for this post. As I’ve said in my blog, there’s no one-size-fits-all definition for success. No one can really define this word for you, not your parents, friends, the society and media. The first step to succeed is to have a clear definition of what success is for you. Ask yourself what will give you the satisfaction and happiness in life.

  229. I am loving the Frengggy type Shirt. I am a 80’s girl and the was all about the frengggg! I love the videos and so loved this Q & A. I have thought this very same question myself. I love how I am not the only one!

    That truly helps me!

    Thank you and your peeps and all you do! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!


    Thank you!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Thank you, Jacqui! Awesome that this episode answered one of your own Q’s — we love hearing that. And rock on 80’s!

  230. Joseanne

    Dear Marie,
    I really like your videos and this one especially, as I have felt so “unaccomplished” for many years when comparing myself to other women (including you 🙂 ). I have been pondering about “success” and I went back to the original meaning of the Latin/Italian word, which is actually: “to happen, to result, to occur” So I think that the feeling of success comes along when one is able to “make happen the things in life that one desires or that one feels happy with”. This is of course different for everybody, but in essence, I think success is the “ability to make things happen in our lives that we desire, enjoy and are happy with”. So we can feel unsuccessful in many ways: because we have tried to make something happen and we failed, or we succeeded and found out we didn’t really feel happy with it, or, as in the question, we actually are happy but we don’t consider it as a success because society suggests we should do something else. I guess I have managed to do all of them :-). Taking a new beginning now with the end in mind :-). Thanks a lot.

  231. Erica

    Success to me is living a life of loving others well, and having peace in mind, body & spirit.

    • Chelsea - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Erica.

  232. At 65, success for me is living with an open, clear, strong and full heart, contributing to the good and experiencing and knowing ‘belonging’. This is so different from my younger years of raising children, having career goals, even having a commitment to trust myself and my own path…….at this point, with friends passing on, seeing first hand illness and loss and experiencing aging, there are two things that I must have daily….the first, a daily practice that connects me with God and aligns my day and the second is people to love and be loved by. With those two in place, I can create, share and love freely with the precious time I have now.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s so beautiful, Victoria. Thank you so much for leading with your heart and sharing your wisdom with us. We appreciate you and are cheering you on as you share your vibrant, soul-filled love with the people in your life.

  233. Matthew McGuire

    My name is Matthew McGuire My picture of success is becoming what God put me earth and also to go to college and get my own clients in psychology and my own tv program like you Marie and be inspired by a lot of people that is my picture of success for now Marie i can add to it in the future I hope to hear from you shortly
    God bless you bye
    Matthew McGuire

  234. For me success requires awareness and growth. Whatever your own definition is, if you are not aware of it and if you haven’t grown, it isn’t success. The word itself (succeed) says it all. Success is based on achieving something. To do that you need to know what it is you want to achieve. Success is something you aim for and that requires some effort to do. This lets you grow and expand your in and out. I can lay on the beach all day and my soul can feel real peachy, it is hardly success. Except my plan was to lay all day in the sun to become tanned. If I made it, I was successful.
    If you want to be a waitress, be the best waitress you can be. Achieving this is success. Money and and all the other physical things are just a form of measurement for success. But only A form not THE form of measurement.
    If you measure your success in happy customers and because of your efforts you gain more and more, you are successful, you grow and you know it (=happiness).
    What better can there be?

  235. Jane Cavanagh

    Oh my.
    I JUST figured out what Marie has been saying in all these videos. “That was my A to your Q”.
    Fiiiinally! I thought it was some strange language or code that I was missing. “That was my ADR queue” / “That was my attar cue”…
    Phew. Feel better…

  236. Success for me at the moment is ticking everything on my to do list everyday. I have ALOT on my plate at the moment, and I am sooooooooo happy when I get all that can be done in the day done. I kid you not, I write a daily to do list for tomorrow before I go to bed at night to accommodate all the things I need to do by allocating times to the things that need doing and ticking those things off as the day goes on. This way I am slowly chipping away at all the things that I am passionate about, (except house work, lol!) and everyday I know I am closer to my goals. I am sure that my measure of success will change once I start achieving the long term goals and need to get into a different groove.

    But for now it gives me calm in the storm.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s super smart, Rosemarie! Taking small, actionable steps toward your goals is a great way to get things done. 🙂

  237. This is going to sound a little dramatic, but…I blame social media.

    Social media has brought us some amazing things, don’t get me wrong. In fact, my whole business was built on the idea that social media is a great marketing tool. However, being on social media can make some people feel like they aren’t doing enough. We constantly compare ourselves to our friends who are living amazing lives and doing stuff that we can’t do or don’t really want to do. I mean, hiking every weekend is awesome for you, but I kinda just want to eat popcorn and watch reruns of Gilmore Girls. But no one wants to see that photo. lol

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Great points, Jennifer. Social media really is really incredible, but it comes with its own set of problems with comparison. I’m sure you’re absolutely not alone with popcorn and Gilmore Girls though! 😉

  238. I live in Somalia
    I am interested ur ideas its touch reality
    I have respectfull
    thanks for your regards
    : the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame
    : the correct or desired result of an attempt
    : someone or something that is successful : a person or thing that succeeds

  239. I feel successful right now because I am doing what I love with the ones I love. Like I am actually doing it, not just talking about doing it, and that is success!

  240. Mahal

    Thank you for this reminder. Great opportunity to clarify what success means to me.

  241. It is my wish that through skillful means otherwise known as Kungfu in the East the people of the earth will come to know the difference between the experiences of body, mind and spirit. And, through learning traditional methods through the arts be it kungfu tea, calligraphy, painting, flower arrangement, martial art fill in the blank… that they can bring out their own unique gift that not only helps the human family but contributes to healing our planet. The spirit is a thing like the body and must be fed, nurtured and used…but its needs are different than the body or mind. We need to know this as a race so we can evolve and end needless conflicts and division. This is my wish for you and all. Marie has special modern Kungfu that I am happy to have discovered. Kungfu also means skill developed over TIME under MASTER teachers…hard to do in modern world. Way to go Marie.

  242. Success to me is doing what I love and choosing to feel good every day no matter what. Having an income that is generated by helping others and enjoying every moment of it.

  243. Hi Marie,
    My picture of success is to have people calling and making appointments w/me to go over their health and what they think is happening to them health wise. I want to be out doing seminars on health, dangers of sugar and many other topics that will have people interested in health. I want to tell them about essential oils and the healing powers they have…many more topics that will interest people and want them to check into their own health. I want to have fliers out there on billboards for people to find me. I want to be out there telling the world that they don’t need to be unhappy….there is many things they can do to feel good about themselves and their bodies. I love people and want them to find happiness.

  244. Vasoulla Kissias

    Love this Marie thank you, great insight:)

  245. Success is when I’m behaving in a way that is aligned with how I’ve defined my Standards of Integrity for my life.

  246. JasDeepKaur aka Sasha

    My success is when my art is welcomed into your rooms, houses, cubicles, offices, and buildings. I’m not here for myself. I’m here for a purpose that was planted in me before I was even born. I now understand it’s up to me! My success is what I leave behind before I die. In the process my paintings and creations are my life’s greatest successes because they’ve drawn me out. The canvas or paper calls me and I must hasten to that call!
    It’s not what others so called “taught” me was success because I haven’t really had that yet! Ha, ha!

  247. Rosalinda

    Creating a mutually supportive community that enriches and enhances everyone’s life and a f*** of a lot of fun.

  248. Manon Laurin

    My idea of success is being at peace with my life up to now, I am 61 and I have never been at peace with life, always fighting depression.
    If I can do an artistic activity that is giving me financial stability, that would be successfull, because my soul is one of an artist, but I have never disciplined myself to be productive, nore to sale my art professionnally.
    Success is living in the country, find a garten to plant my vegetables, rent an apartment. Live alone in a village. Find a boyfriend one day whom I can share my life with.
    If I can surround myself with kindred spirit friends, maybe 8 or 9 close friends to play with doing different activities together, that would be successfull. I have lived as a hermit for 35 years, but I did socialise at one point and I do thrive in a social setting. I know that my clan is made of artists and yoga people, as spirituality is my other activity that keeps me grounded.
    If I could contribute to help children live in a world that is respectfull towards them, that would give purpose to my life, it would be the ultimate achievement. I would love to build a school that is based on yoga and art from children from day care to the end of childhood. It would be in the country and would be free to let everybody in the community join it. It would be giving classes to very small groups of children so that everybody is peacefull and happy.
    Success is not making tones of money.
    Financial success is money that covers my ordinary needs, my artistic career, and my school for children.

  249. Sofia Carlotta

    My definition of success is having my dream life. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to be ambitious, because my friends and family underestimate me. Sometimes I don’t want to fight anymore. I just want to say, it’s also okay to have a ambitious definition of success!

  250. Christy

    I’m still trying to figure out what success looks like for me. I’m thinking, feeling connected to myself each day through self care, self nurturing and self compassion. Plus I’m thinking that the more of that I can prioritize, the more I can give to others! 🙂

    • Julia - Team Forleo

      This is beautiful, Christy! You’re so right, as you take excellent care of yourself and continue to make this a priority, you’ll have that much more overflow to share with others. XO

  251. Hey Marie!

    I can’t believe I never heard about you until earlier this month, just in time to sign up for B-School!

    Success for me to have the financial freedom and time to travel and share my ideas and thoughts around the world. I want to be able to support my mother and my family back in Thailand. One of my secret visions is to actually be able to support my Thai family in a way that they can kickstart their own small micro businesses. I am a mix, my mother is Thai and my father was Icelandic, and somehow I feel like it is my mission to open up endless possibilities for them to see and explore what this world has to offer. One day I want to invite them to Iceland!

    I think my vision of Success in a nutshell is to be able to take of the people that I love and also have a lot of free time to enjoy the things I love to do. I am an adventurous soul, I love surfing, yoga, travelling, photography, writing and just plain out PLAYING around. I want my life to be full of play and laughter and I want to inspire people to live their dreams!

    Thank you so much for your work Marie. I watched “5 Mistakes Even Smart Entrepreneurs Make — And How To Avoid Them,” and the question: “What would it mean for me to have financial freedom?” I got me all emotional and I literally teared up. My answer was “I could take care of my mother and also support my family”. This is something I so truly desire and I can feel my heart absolutely beating faster when I envision it. I am proud to say that I joined B-School 2018. Thank you so much Marie. You have inspired me so so so so much during the past few days. I am looking so forward to working with you and learning more from you.

    With love and excitement in my heart,

  252. Italian ragazza with a French twist – yes please! 🙂
    My definition of success:
    – have a healthy lifestyle, can go at the lake, work from anywhere I go, create, eat well, sleep well, and hear crickets before I go to bed.
    – make $$ and be valued ($$ is a form of love) to have my comfortable lifestyle, to be able to help my family and friends, to have the magic bubble I need to create my creation
    – spend time with my family and friends whenever
    – have special time with ma’ man
    – have a café chantilly whenever I feel like it
    – ummm… that’s it!

    BTW, this is part of the Start The Right Business Recommended Resources

    • Julia - Team Forleo

      LOVE it, Llyane – this sounds absolutely wonderful!! You’re doing such an amazing job with Start the Right Business – keep it up 🙂

  253. Sharn

    Yes, LOVE the fringe, but I enjoy your delight in the fringe even mre!
    My idea of success changes as I go but currently I feel like I’m having a successful period (day/month/school pickup) when I have space to recognise that the way I feel about something is purely based in perception. ‘Cos then I can change how I look at it. It might be something Course In Miracles-ey now that I think of it. Will have to do some reading…
    Anyway, for the last couple of weeks for example, I’ve been feeling totally ripped off because we’ve changed daycare days which means I have one less day a week to accomplish work/house stuff/batch cooking/soul searching etc. I was not a super pleasant person to be around, or to be. I knew I wanted out of that feeling though, so I caught up with a friend who was able to help me shift the way I was looking at it.
    Turns out, my cup was not feeling filled, so I was resenting my husband for seeming to be able to fill HIS cup.
    So now I’m sitting at a super healthy cafe drinking an insanely green smoothie (I think it’s the spirulina), doing my pre B-School exercises, loving life.
    I could have been at home seething and wasting the day. But I’m feeling like it’s a win.

  254. Success to me is expressing myself in everything I do and making good money on the way ?❤️??

  255. A.L.P.

    It’s so difficult to redefine success because I so want conventional success. Meaning money enough for house, car and all the fixings and luxuries that can be bought. But that’s not true success. If I only had money that wouldn’t be enough. I want to be creatively nourished and fulfilled. I want to be able to express the fullness of who I am. And also receive money for a lot of my creative life. I believe that I’m a good creative writer/storyteller, I love making musicals, I love putting them on. I wish I could have like a couple of big financial somethings with my creativity like a hit song or maybe the novel I’m writing is not only creatively satisfying but also financially.

  256. Felicia

    What is success actually? Most people would say living in a big mansion or having a good looking husband or maybe driving a Ferrari to the supermarket. For me, is drinking tea and read a good book, lived on the mountainside with picturesque scenery to accompany me by my side, preferably in Scotland. I’d have a not care at all about money issue or my family, I told you it’s weird. Other than that, I feel at ease volunteering for a good cause whether spending time with children or helping out a family’s life. That’s all

    • Jillian - Team Forleo

      Felicia, I love that you’re beautifully defining what success means to you. It’s different for everyone, and it’s so important that each of us be able to determine what a beautiful life looks and feels like, instead of going along with what others’ might assume we need. Your vision is beautiful!

  257. Rachael Pinkman

    Success is finding that balance between being a co-creator and being humble. I think we all struggle with what we want, how we want it and the way in which those things effect those around us. Nobody wants to give up their passions but many do for love. It’s not right nor wrong; but for some it’s dificult to define. I want to define it; find that happy place amongst like-minded people and share or rather give it away. Only by giving it away does it have any merit or hold any reward. You’ve to give it away to keep it and let go to hold onto it…

  258. So many people think of success as achieving something great, as defined by some far-away standard which they do not believe they will ever attain so they never feel successful. It’s sad that so many people go through life this way.

  259. Jacki

    Last day on Earth: I will have several pets nearby (large, fluffy)while I read a good book (I’ll probably get into trashy fiction at that age). I will own my own house within walking distance of a bookstore or library (there better be both when I’m old!). I’ll have written a few stories myself by then to share with others, and I’ll have otherwise lived a quiet life. I’ll (eventually) have a small number of lady friends that I can confide in and discuss life with, as well as a few friends that I can chat with about life back before I published. I’d have gone to Tokyo, Osaka, London, and moved to a warmer climate. I’d have made enough money to support myself and give to animal shelters, probably volunteering (I’ve been strongly thinking of doing that recently).

    What is weird about me picturing this, that I am not picturing anyone else! I was always concerned about being married, or dying alone. And while I know that I didn’t wants kids of my own, I had thought that I wanted to adopt a child. I guess I don’t. Wow. I guess I can use that savings account for pets instead.

  260. Margaret Sarmiento

    Success to me equals loving all aspects of my life!

    • Jennifer - Team Forleo

      That’s a lovely definition, Margaret! Thank you so much for sharing.

  261. Success is definitely relative!
    For me its waking up feeling healthy and happy to start my day, working with people I love and who love me back, empowering them by changing their insights and views of themselves and their world. Giving them tools and options to live healthier and more satisfied!

  262. Arieal

    Every time I watch one of your videos I think of my 16yr old niece. I always appreciated her spunk, great fashion style & her bright personality. Turning into a teenager, being homeschooled and really wrapped up in her (pardon me.. religion) I’ve seen that spunk and sparkle start to fade.. Or maybe it’s just being a teenager. I’m reminded in your classes to stay true to who I am and not be afraid to let it shine! I’m a tom boy/raft guide and always liked to look pretty but felt uncomfortable “dressing up”. I’ve started wearing dresses more often & embracing my feminine power! And I imagine that is the biggest way I can help my niece shine her light is by shining mine =) Thank you Marie for the inspiration. Gabrielle Bernstein is who turned me onto you. Your both an inspiration & inspire me to continue on my path. I’m now training to be a yoga teacher & intend to share it with as many people I can!

  263. Barb

    Success for me is constantly changing as I evolve and create. I love trying new ideas, whether they work out or not, and will constantly seek out information on how to do Technics and then modify them to come up with something different. And, I absolutely love Maya Angelou’s quote regarding success – it fits so we’ll with my beliefs.

  264. Truly when someone doesn’t know after that its up to other
    visitors that they will help, so here it takes place.

  265. You have so much soul in your writings. Thanks for sharing this to us.

  266. You made such an interesting piece to read, giving every subject enlightenment for us to gain knowledge. Thanks for sharing the such information with us to read this…

  267. It was wondering if I could use this write-up on my other website, I will link it back to your website though.Great Thanks.

    • Julia - Team Forleo

      Hi there! We’re so glad you enjoyed this post. While we’re not able to grant permission for you to share our written content on your website, you’re always welcome to share a direct link back to this or other posts here!

  268. Cassie

    My favorite part was your impression of an old lady-it made me laugh out loud. 🙂 I love your goofy side. I have one too, and maybe one day i’ll be able to share it with the world like you do. xo Cassie

  269. Success to me is reaching my personal goals, these have changed over the years from being Goalkeeper varsity soccer team in high school, making the City league soccer team, being Goalkeeper university varsity soccer team, playing ice hockey with the UW-Madison women’s club team(there were no teams for girls in the city or the high school back then. Getting into Duke University Physician’s Assistant program as an undergraduate(you can’t do that anymore-Bachelor’s is required), traveling internationally solo, having a home birth with midwives, being Goalkeeper Boston Team Handball Club, getting published, public speaking, advocating for multiple concussed female athletes, self-publishing and now taking B-school to learn the skills to become financially independent again as a neurologically challenged entrepreneur.

  270. right now my idea of success is simply taking action, soon it will mean making a profit, even if it is only one dollar, eventually, it will be paying off my brother’s student loan debt which is crushing.

  271. Tammy Sibert

    My idea of personal success changes based on where I am in my season. Right now, I am laying the foundational bricks. So, my success today is waking up and taking one more step towards my vision. One. more. step.
    Let’s get it!

    • Maja - Team Forleo

      We love that, Tammy. Keep taking those steps, we’re cheering you on! ?

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