Success means different things to different people. What does success mean to you?

That's a question I ask all of my new clients and I love the myriad of responses. It would be interesting to add a second question: "On a scale of 1-10 how difficult do you believe it will be to achieve your definition of success?" I don't think the answers would be quite as diverse. I believe that many, if not most, entrepreneurs would say that becoming successful is very stressful and means working around the clock. But is that true, or is it simply our perception?

A smart business model is designed to be scalable and doesn't depend solely on the business owner's contribution. Yet many entrepreneurs hold on to every small task and every big worry as though no one else in this world is capable of following through on a job or turning a worrisome event into a successful outcome. It's almost as though they believe that running a successful business must be unpleasant and that the heavy burden is theirs alone to bear.

That does not have to be the case. Even solopreneurs don't have to work on a solo basis. I've written about advisory boards, virtual assistants, coaching, and more in past blog posts; there are resources for everyone. No one has to go it alone. One of my favorite Henry Ford quotes is, "If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself." With a solid business model in place, success is attainable and letting go of any negative beliefs around success will get you there more quickly.

My observation is that people who truly believe that achieving success and living in comfort comes from a constant stream of stress, worry, and deprivation often experience just that; an uncomfortable existence including great financial stress and worry. Think about your stress. It's very real, I know. The question is: are you allowing your stress to hold you down or propel you forward? Another wonderful Henry Ford quote: "When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it."

Take a few moments and think about your definition of success and your feelings about achieving it. Are you prepared for a smooth take off or experiencing mechanical difficulties?