It’s not being recruited to work as a photojournalist at an international news outlet, it’s not to have a six-figure income, it’s not to have a house, family, or multiple degrees. It’s not to have published work throughout the world.

When I started out on my own last year this idea of success would be something I would have to really look at. Success coupled with self-worth and other ideas like this.

At what point would my mom and dad be proud and what point have I ‘made’ it? I could keep sharing my week to week assignments and achievements, the praise from clients, the income flowing in, the growth of my business and my skill. But that started to feel like this never-ending wheel of reporting and the idea of needing to update to prove my success for me felt exhausting and not where my energy needed to be focused in.

Since I was young my own desires didn’t aline with the common ideals of success. I didn’t find marrying appealing, nor buying a home, or having a family. I found myself desiring travel, self development, hard work, being adventurous, and giving. I found success in the hustle and my ability to continue to push and drive myself forward.

With some true reflection, success really just means doing something well. Doing something really well- that is success to me. Having integrity and respect for the craft and every element within it. That feels like success for me. Nothing else matters and we don’t have to prove or measure anything to have a sense of success. It is all already in us.

Moment captured by Miles Woodworth

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