People look at the trappings of materialism, of possessions, and of an indulgent lifestyle, and they infer the absence of hard-work, sweat and struggle. They associate the possession of goods with success, representative of a successful person or someone who can get things done; being obviously done, because he’s no longer working hard.
However, the true measure of one’s success are the goals he has set for himself. For success is the achievement of goals, and unless your goal was the possession of great many material possessions, you are no more successful by having them then you are in not.
Understanding this, we can say Bill Gates isn’t a success although he has achieved great material wealth. The goal he had established for Microsoft, as defined in their original mission statement, was “A computer on every desk and in every home, running Microsoft software.” This is the reason why Microsoft competes vigorously in any industry related to computer software or which is heavily dependent on software.
If you think I’m just nit-picking over minor details, then you’re getting the cart before the horse. You’re looking at their position of prominence and wealth as establishing their character; whereas by focusing on their mission, the people of Microsoft didn’t stop once they achieved a measure of material wealth. They kept trying harder and harder to dominate other markets, and risked that material wealth, until they eventually dominated those markets.
You’re also demonstrating a great deal of self-centeredness, measuring others against your own personal standard for success.
Chances are, when you first read the title of this entry you thought of the facade rather than the success. Hopefully, by thinking more clearly on what is the true measure of success, your personal measure of success, you’ll concentrate on those critical areas which will help you achieve them rather than the facade.