What Do You Consider Your Greatest Achievement?

How to Define Your Greatest Achievement: What It Is, What It Means, and How To Celebrate It

Depending on which internal compass we’re following, sometimes the most rewarding experience of our lives is the one that leads us to question what we thought we were doing and search for a deeper purpose. We find the answers in action and not in idle deliberation. So many times, we feel as though there’s so much more for us to achieve than anything else. Like these, great leaders have stepped up to define our greatest achievement as it pertains to life. They’ve forced us to pause and reconsider why they matter and how they contribute meaningfully to the world. These are their insights on how you can define your greatest achievement:

How to define your greatest achievement: tips from top achievers

If we want to find out how to define your greatest achievement, it helps to look to those who have gone before us, as well as those who are up and coming. Top achievers have defined their greatest achievements in different ways and at different times. This can help to shed some light on what they found most fulfilling and meaningful. It can also help to inspire you to dig deeper within yourself to discover what you can meaningfully contribute. Regardless of what your greatest achievement is, it’s important to be clear on what that means to you. After all, it’s not why anyone else is looking for it. It’s not what others are looking for. You can define your greatest achievement based on how you want to feel. While there are a few common threads, there’s also a lot of room for customization. What makes your greatest achievement unique makes it yours. You can’t ask anyone else to define their greatest achievement, but you can ask yourself.

Your greatest achievement is in the past, not the future

If you’re searching for your greatest achievement, start by looking at the past. Not just at your past achievements, but what you’ve learned and what you’ve become as a person along the way. It’s important that you take the time to reflect on what you’ve learned. It’s through reflection that we can identify areas where we’ve become more knowledgeable or gained new skills. By looking back, you can see what you’ve accomplished and celebrate it. You can also find inspiration to keep you. Achievers often find that their greatest achievement isn’t in the future but in the past.

Define your contribution to others’ greatest achievements.

This might sound a little egotistical, but it’s not. Achievers will often define their contribution to others’ greatest achievements. You can’t impact the world unless you first impact it on a personal level. That means you can’t do what you do if you don’t first do what you do. Achievers know that their contribution to others’ greatest achievements is what they offer at this moment. They have a clear idea of what they want to achieve and they have a clear idea of how they want to achieve it. There might still be a lot you need to learn. There might still be a lot you need to grow. There might still be a lot you need to forgive yourself for. But at least you can define your contribution to others’ greatest achievements by figuring out your contribution to yours.

Learn everything you can about how you’ve succeeded. Then ask yourself this question.

This is a strategy that top achievers often use. They want to make sure that they truly understand how they’ve succeeded. They want to know everything from the why behind their choices to who they were surrounded by or what they were doing. Successful people are curious by nature and usually have an insatiable appetite for learning and growth.

Impact future generations. Teach, mentor, or inspire them.

This is an idea that can come from the most unexpected places. Each generation stands on the shoulders of those that came before them and the lessons they’ve learned. Achievers know that it’s important to be a future-shaping force and have a clear idea of what they want to leave behind. This can mean creating new platforms, new schools of thought, or new systems that it has inspired them to implement. You can also choose to leave behind something symbolic, like a poem or piece of art. It’s important that you impact future generations.

What would be your own personal #GreatestAchievement?

This is something that you can only truly find out for yourself. You might know exactly what your greatest achievement is, but you can’t know for sure until you search for it. There’s also a huge difference between knowing what your greatest achievement is and knowing how to define it. The only way to accomplish this is to dig in and really search for your greatest achievement. You need to find out what your greatest achievement means to you and what it means to the world. As you do this, you’ll likely find that your perception of your greatest achievement changes. And that’s the best part of this whole process. The end goal isn’t a single answer or definition, but a new way of looking at your life.


-Nancy Duarte

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