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Success is defined by the individual, it is accomplishing your goals and aspirations, what your elders define as success for you might not be what you define success to be. Although 'everyone' wants you to be successful, they might all have a different definition of success; examples of success could be money, prominence, academic and professional achievement and excellence, high social status.
It is up to you to create definitive goals for your future, once you accomplish them you will find your success. Personally, all of the previous examples of what success might be are attainable with hard work and are good, but if any of these intercepts with my happiness, health, or moral values my idea of success has not been accomplished.
You can and will be successful in whatever you do as long as you put your heart into it and you like doing whatever your doing, money is just a bonus. Don't listen to what everyone else expects from you or what they want to see you do, take a look around and see what makes you smile and what makes your heart get that feeling of satisfaction.
No, you don't have to be in those professions to make money or feel successful. Success is the accomplishment of a goal. For example: if you want to graduate from a college and you did it. That's your success! Success means different things to different people. Being successful is getting happiness from what you're doing and feeling proud about yourself. It doesn't necessarily to become rich or how much money you make. But in most of the society, they count successful person to only those who can make lots of money. Which is obviously not true. It depends on what is your motivation for being successful.
Like Blake said,if your way of being successful is money oriented, then you should definitely have a career options based on accounting, finance or business. Those careers are mainly for money making business. But, if you want to be in the medical field, you have to stop thinking about making money because your 1st priority in that field would be taking care of people. Mostly they are there because they have a passion for helping people and there is also a plus point that those professions do pay them well.
In my opinion, since they are happy taking care of people and proud of what they have done for the community , those people are called successful people.
Success in medicine is not defined by monetary gain. If financial gain is your primary motivation for pursuing careers in medicine, I would suggest your move on to another career in the business, financial or energy sectors. Success in medicine, whether you choose to pursue a career as a physician, PA, NP, RN or etc is dependent upon whether you can say that you improved at least one person's life when you lay your head down at night. Medical care is and should be patient centered and the motivation of a health care provider is the improvement of health of the patient and this is acquired through the acquisition of medical knowledge and the implementation of that knowledge to make something better for a patient. Being able to convert knowledge into actionable, physical, tangible benefits for another human being that is able to be objectively observed and experienced is and of it self the definition of success and is the essence of human power and ingenuity.
Jimmy Tam Huy Pham
Short answer to your first question is no. You don't have to be a doctor to make money. Doctors, in fact, don't make that much money anymore. Being successful is relative and it correlates with happiness being in that field. For some individuals, being able to bring home around 100K/year, being able to spend time with their children, and take mini vacations every year, and pursuing a hobby is a 'perfect and successful' life. Any profession that provides you that can make you a successful person. Being in the medical field does not equate to being successful. Why am I in the medial field then, you may ask? I worked in food services, retail, customer service, and in the hospital for years before I decided to come back to school and pursue medical career, which gives me opportunities in research and teaching. Plus I don't have to come home smelling like food all day when I used to work as a cook in the kitchen!
Tina Ellis, MD
Everyone will define success differently. For one person it may be graduating from college. For another, they may need to be the chair of a medical department. I'll fall back on the advice that everyone gives and almost no one follows: Find your passion and work really hard.
Interestingly, beyond $75,000 annual income, more money doesn't correlate with more happiness. That's not to say that money isn't a consideration at all when choosing a career, but going into a field only to make money has a way of making people very unhappy.