Most people say they want success, but when you ask them what success means you get wildly different responses. We recently asked some of the best and brightest in our community to tell us about how they define success and have shared their responses below.

Tate Meyer | Illustrator

I used to believe success meant getting an internship while in undergrad, moving somewhere new to work a 9-5, making art at all times, and somehow having the headspace for a healthy relationship with myself, and others. In the last two years, as the constant unpredictable nature of the world revealed itself, I learned I needed to reevaluate what I considered successful. I’ve learned that I feel most successful when I’m creating things that are genuine and real to me. This might sound obvious to some people, but when you’re constantly meeting deadlines, making art with other people’s ideas, and using mediums strictly to get work done the fastest, the simple concept of authenticity can disappear. The pandemic motivated me to try more mediums (out of boredom if we’re being real). Hands-on materials like clay, embroidery, felting, and collaging were exciting and new to me. Read more>>

Anthony Maddox | Influencer & Youtuber

For me, success means reaching a goal, accomplishing a task, or otherwise accomplishing what i set out to do. Read more>>

Arianna Wellmoney | Actress

I think “success” is a combination of small and big things that fill up what your life is. I find that many people describe success as the absolute, final completion of your wildest expectations and dreams. Some people only see the end goal, while I have learned to appreciate every step of the process in my journey. It is very common to end up comparing yourself with others, and in the acting industry, being overwhelmed and scared by the amount of work that needs to be put behind your career is so easy. My biggest example of my thought process is Jennifer Lawrence’s career – she won the Academy Award for Best Actress at the young age of 22 – which is an outstanding accomplishment. As actors, the first thing that we may think about when we read an achievement like that might be “Wow, at the age of 22, I was/am nowhere near that amount of success”. When we start comparing ourselves to others, we put ourselves down. Read more>>

Jaya Black | Creator & Curator

I see success as being able to support yourself by doing what you love to do, while helping others do the same. Read more>>

Sarah Hooda-Virani | Makeup Artist & Merchant Specialist

Growing up, success was defined by a very straightforward, traditional guideline. Go to college, get a degree, get a 9-5 job, get married, have kids. But listen to this! “Favorable or desired outcome.” That’s the dictionary definition for “success.” I quickly began to realize that my desired outcome in life wasn’t very traditional. I was always super creative growing up, always into makeup and fashion! I’ll be honest, I wasn’t always the most book smart in the room and I definitely wasn’t the one getting straight As in the classroom. I got through school somehow, but then I thought, “now what?” I tried different things, I tried being a teacher, which I did enjoy but it didn’t spark something in me. I tried working at a salon, which did give me the creative freedom that I wanted but I knew I had more potential. I even did my fair share in retail and boy, we do not give retail workers enough credit or grace. Read more>>

Bakari Vashon | Songwriter & Artist

I defined success as being able to provide and take care of your family doing what you love. Thats true success in my eyes. Read more>>

Stephanie Mathurin | Brunching Expert & Experience Curator

Success is a relative term. People define It differently for what they ultimately would like to achieve, wealth, stability, etc. For me, success is two fold. For one, “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”- Albert Schweitzer. I think this quote beautifully expresses that success is simply the joy related to accomplishing the things you set out to do. In addition, success only comes by persevering these accomplishments despite failures. Winston Churchill once said, “Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” More often than not, being successful is not a permanent or constant state. In the end, enduring through the “lows” where you may feel discouraged builds an appreciation for the more promising “highs”. That is the ultimate success. Read more>>

Lavar McRae | Recording Artist & Creative

My definition of success is striving everyday to be great, not just in one thing I mean in EVERYTHING that you do. You can succeed at anything if you put your heart and mind into it, and not giving up until your job is done. Read more>>

Hassan Melanated | Artist

To me, success is defined by the joy you feel in the amount of time you put into your craft. The focus, patience and discipline it takes to have true success is imperative. I was never amazed by the multi million dollar corporations who claimed success came from millions of dollars. Moreover, success can only come from how happy you feel, and what you will or have gained by striving in your personal goals. Being at peace with yourself is the best form of success. Whenever I’m doing business, I always try to remember god and ask for contentment. To be able to monetize your craft and enjoy doing it, is a different type of success that not everyone can have. You can have the most expensive jewelry or designer clothes, but your soul will always speak out to you! The true and fulfilling Success does not come without the Remembrance of God. Being in Africa has really changed how I view success. Read more>>