I feel satisfied when I make a positive impact on someone else’s life. I don’t think I am ever satisfied with myself for longer than an hour or so. I have these sky-high expectations of where I need to be socially and professionally. It is nearly impossible for me to continuously reach or exceed those expectations. I just keep reminding myself that if I put my head down and crank out work, good things will eventually happen.
—Steve Weiss, CEO of MuteSix
Satisfaction for me is living in the moment and being happy with where I am right now. I can only truly enjoy my family, friends and work life if I am present. Coping with [my husband’s] Parkinson’s disease as a family the last few years has taught us how important every little moment is. I’ve learned to cherish the small things and not let problems take over my day.
—Maura Horton, CEO of MagnaReady
I feel satisfied when I have taken care of myself emotionally and physically. I like to think about it like brushing my teeth. I do that every day because I know if I don’t, my smile will go downhill. Just the way I would associate brushing my teeth, taking a shower and putting on fresh clothes as necessary self-maintenance, I think of living a healthy lifestyle the same way.
—Rupa Mehta, founder of NaliniKIDS
I’m 44, and have worked hard for decades across industries—banking, academia, journalism, art curation—in order to finally understand both my limitations and strengths. But ironically, the collective experience I’ve gathered from such disparate fields has led me to create a career that challenges me and keeps me constantly engaged and energized. I decided to be a cultural entrepreneur through tough lessons—for instance, I realized that I’m not best suited to managing people or working within complex organizations; that I have a difficult time delegating and prefer to do things myself, even if that means running a smaller business; that I want to surround myself only with people who are smarter than me; that I would rather work in creative industries even if that means making less money.
—Danielle Chang, founder of LuckyRice
I look at life like I’m a character in an role playing game. Every time I do something challenging, I give myself a mental +1, because I know I leveled up. Leveling up even a tiny bit is extremely satisfying.
—Emerson Spartz, CEO of Dose
This article originally appeared in the June 2016 issue of SUCCESS magazine.