How do YOU define success?

8th July 2024

Posted on Categories LifestyleTags , ,

How do we gain clarity in our message and mission? Sam Thomas, Founder of Different Hats Limited and Co-Founder of County Business Clubs Sussex, shares his experience of TALK24.

The famous advice to work on your business, not just in it, holds more truth than I realised – until I attended Talk 24.

The brilliant Toby Moore and his team curated an incredible three-day retreat, providing business owners the space to ask insightful questions and delve deeper into their narratives to effectively share their messages.

For me, the retreat was transformative. I revisited a chapter in my past, unlocking emotions and realisations I hadn’t faced before. Through my story, I uncovered my mission: to help the world see success differently and reduce the suicide rate among men   in the UK.

As I reflected, a quote from a beloved story resonated deeply: “What do you think success is?” asked the boy. “To love,” said the Mole.

In our society, success is often measured by financial status, especially in the business world. This was certainly how I defined success at the start of my entrepreneurial journey. Driven by the pursuit of wealth, I promised myself I would be a millionaire by 40. Yet, in 2018, just before my 40th birthday, I was farther from that goal than ever. Despite running my own business, I hadn’t reached the financial milestones I believed defined success. I didn’t own a house, and I felt I hadn’t achieved what society expected. This led to a severe battle with mental health, feeling like a failure and letting my family down. It wasn’t until a recent retreat that I realised the depth of my despair, which had once made me feel like I didn’t want to be here anymore.

The turning point came one morning after a sleepless, tearful night. As I sat in my car, unable to stop crying, I returned home. My twins greeted me with, “I love you, daddy,” and my wife hugged me, sensing my distress.

In that moment, I realised I was surrounded by love. Reflecting on my life, I saw the love from my family, friends, and the business community I serve. If success were measured by the relationships I’ve built and the love surrounding me, I would be one of the most successful people in the world. This epiphany changed my narrative on success. Now, I aim to help others see success differently, challenging societal norms and embracing the idea that true success is to love and be loved. That is why we are here.

Thank you to Toby and the other attendees for their warmness, support and love allowing me a safe space to share this extremely vulnerable chapter of my life. I will forever be grateful to you all.