What’s Better – Success or Satisfaction?

Welcome to fall!

For the first time in many years, I’m glad to see the summer end. Why?

Over the spring and summer, I had a series of things happen. It started with a health challenge. Then my car was hit – twice – and Joseph’s car was t-boned and totaled. On top of that, my not-so-old air conditioner stopped working and my frost-free freezer was making ice. Nine appointments, three companies (and the freezer is still not fixed).

So when I left for vacation in late August, I was at loose ends with myself. I did a lot of nothing in Maine and I’m glad. On the long drive home, something my cousin did a couple of years ago came into my head.

annmarie & Joseph

In Maryann’s effort to answer the forever questions of “where did the time go?” and “what was I doing?”, she took a day to write down everything she did – her morning routine, the tasks she did at work, making dinner, doing laundry, folding towels…everything.

At the end of the day, she looked at the list and, to her surprise, she felt good. She realized her time wasn’t wasted (the way it too-often felt), and that it was well-spent and purposeful. It gave her an unexpected feeling of satisfaction.

I felt I needed something like that too.

First I thought of doing a new gratitude list. But WAIT. I’ve done gratitude lists in the past and like them. And I was already grateful…that Joseph wasn’t hurt in the accident, that the tree fell through the back window of my car, not my windshield (I was driving), and that I had the money to fix the appliances. I had my list…but it wasn’t lifting me up the way I needed it.

I needed something else. Satisfaction. But what does that really mean?


When I got home, I googled “satisfaction” and the first thing to show up was the old Rolling Stones song. Not what I was looking for…but then, omg, it was an earworm in my head all day…“I can’t get no….”. Drat!

I tried again.

I found the actual dictionary definition: “pleased or content with what has been experienced or received.” Hmmm… I could use a little more “pleased” and “content”. So, I wondered, how do I  get it…

I decided to take a page from the so-popular gratitude journal but flip the script. Instead of writing down gratitudes, I’d write one thing that satisfied me.

The very first day I wrote, “I’m satisfied that I made a phone call that I’ve been putting off.” As soon as I wrote it, I felt a mind shift. It made a difference; I felt good.

That week I wrote every day about something that satisfied me…that I exercised for the 3rd time/week, balanced a checkbook, started a new project, made an appointment I’d put off, reached out to a neighbor who posted something sad on FB…you get the idea.

None of these were really big things – and some might say not even important. Most of them weren’t even related to my work. They were just normal things that gave me that “pleased or content” feeling.

At the end of a week, reading that list gave me a surprising feeling of peace…the kind that comes with a sense of satisfaction?


Is satisfaction really that important? YES!

Success is often out of our control….like a lot of things in today’s world: covid, rising gas prices, food costs, empty shelves, politics, and short-staffed companies that can’t provide services quickly…just to name a few.

What IS in our control is what goes on between our ears. Last week I posted this quote in the Victory Chicks Community: “A satisfied life is better than a successful life, because our success is measured by others but our satisfaction is measured by our own heart, and soul, and mind.”

Will you measure yours?


I’m challenging you to keep a satisfaction journal for a week. Get a notebook, or start a file on your phone. Write down one thing you did today that gave you a feeling of satisfaction. When you do it, notice how you feel. Do it again tomorrow.

You aren’t looking for a big anything…no big successes, no earthshaking revelation, no life-changing event. You’re going small…looking for satisfaction in whatever you are doing.

Do it for one week – just 7 days. See how it goes. Then, at the end of next week, read that list. If you’re like me, something will shift inside. You’ll feel good…and maybe even peaceful. After a week, you can forget about it…unless you love whatever it does for you, and then you can choose to make it a habit in your life.

And I’d like to hear from you at the private Victory Chicks Community on FB. If you aren’t a member of the Victory Chicks yet, click the link. ask to join and I’ll approve you.

Have a great month and get yourself some satisfaction!!!

With love and in victory,

Btw: If you like what you read here, and you think someone you know will benefit from reading it, please forward this to that friend, relative, or colleague. THANKS!!

#ICYMI: Did you see the article about me in Authority Magazine’s Power Woman series? Wait’ll you read who my “gotta meet” person is! 

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What is the Victorious Woman Project?

Annmarie Kelly is a teacher, relationship coach, author, and the architect of The Five-Year Marriage. You can learn more at AnnmarieKelly.com. And, for some weekly inspiration, join Annmarie’s private Facebook group, The Victory Chicks Community.

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