Personally, I don't see myself as successful...my books don't sell a lot of copies. But in the eyes of my family and close friends, I'm a huge success. To them, I'm another J.K. Rowling. That makes me feel like a million flies!
Creativity is a personal thing. Often, we creative types, don't fully see our gifts. We rely on others to see what it is that we're trying to express. So many times I've written pages and trashed them, only to have someone fish them out, read them, and tell me it's some of my best work. It's an odd feeling. Why couldn't I see it?
My friend, the Dharma Frog, has said that, "Every successful frog is a dreamer whom someone believed in." I never really understood these words until recently when I had the opportunity to encourage a young artist. He wasn't feeling very good about his himself, or his work. I told him I thought his work was good and showed great potential. Now my opinion is just that, my opinion, but I did see touches of greatness in his paintings. And I felt it was my honor, and duty, to tell him so. Upon hearing these words, he beamed like the brightest evening star. He needs some professional training, but what creative frog doesn't, when he first gets started? Humans do to, of course.
Without some words of encouragement, my little friend might have just given up and the world would be a little worse off for it. My few encouraging sentencesmade him feel successful; that someone else could see his vision. Now he is spurred on to attend art school and master his craft. I say, "Way to go little Rembrandt!"
What are you looking at? Are you seeing creative greatness in those around you? Have you told them so? If so, good for you! If not, I urge you to see them as successful in whatever their chosen endeavor. Your kind words or gentle criticisms might be all it takes for them to go on and become someone truly inspiring; someone who will encourage others. It's a chain reaction that grows with time. Creativity is what makes this ol' world spin. And you can be a part of it. Speak up and tell others how successful they are. In return, you'll become successful, too. For it's not money that makes one successful; it's a sense of pride in one's words, deeds, and actions.