Defining your own success story: stories from a human behaviour expert


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Vicky Jones, human behaviour expert, teacher, guide and founder of The Element Coach, has built a successful coaching business on her desire to help others find their purpose. But she wasn’t always so sure of herself.

At one point in time, before making the move to a coaching career, relationship breakdown, career transition and distance from family had led her to questioning her life and herself.

“I actually had my moment in my life where I had to reevaluate everything. I was at a crossroads, which many people have found themselves at before. …I had lost myself,” she told us.

After a turbulent couple of years, which was perhaps characterized best by the term ‘languishing’, and which has led into the Great Resignation, you may recognise the feeling.

But in actual fact, Vicky says COVID-19 has afforded many people the opportunity to slow down and reassess their life and priorities. Vicky will be presenting a session called Redefining Success at the Women in Tax Congress and gave us a sneak peak into the idea of redefining your own definition of success.

“I'm really looking forward to just getting people to explore, what does success really mean to them? Is it really what they believe or is it what their parents believed or is it what society says? And I think during COVID, we've actually had a chance to really take a good hard look at what matters most to us,” she says.

“A lot of us are on autopilot and we're just doing what we've done the day before. And we're doing what we think we should be doing the next day. So really some of these questions are going to help us unveil what really matters to us most.

We've had two years of absolute chaos. So why not invest in yourselves at the perfect time of year, February, when we've got over the Christmas hype and we're actually rolling our sleeves and we're wanting to be intentional.”

What does your picture of success look like?

For Vicky, having a clear picture in your mind of what success looks like to you personally is all about being intentional with how you spend your time and spending it on what matters most.

“I think this is really important for practitioners because often we're striving for that financial success, that dollar figure. And sometimes we get that promotion or we get that slightly bigger house or that slightly bigger holiday or that slightly better car, and there's always that dollar figure amount associated with success, traditionally. And I just want us to think a little bit outside the box around that,” Vicky explained.

“Maybe time equals success to some of these practitioners. How do they steal back some more time in their day? When we're so busy, we're so bombarded, I think it's really important that we actually take that snapshot of our lives. How do we make some small tweaks? So rather than spending 11 years of our life - I found out the other day - on screens, 11 years scrolling, swiping, flicking, Twittering, how do we actually maybe take half an hour each day to get clarity on what we want to spend more time on?”

For Vicky, who is originally from the UK, a regular journaling practice led to her choosing to make family and reconnecting with them her priority next year, after limited contact during the pandemic.c72cc91f-2809-4df2-a0c0-0764df68b7dc

How do you protect your time?

While redefining success for yourself and understanding your own core values is vital, the next piece of the puzzle is, “how do we actually protect our time and our energy so that we do feel like we're focusing on ourselves, as selfish as it sounds,” Vicky explained.

“So, we're going to be talking about boundaries and, how do we create healthy boundaries? Before we can do that, we obviously need to know what we're protecting and why. I'm really looking forward to sharing some tips and trick around that.”

Insights from a long life

Inspiration can sometimes come from the least expected places.

“I read a book called the Five Regrets of the Dying. It was written by a palliative care nurse and it was the insights of people who were on their last days about some of their regrets. One of them being, ‘I wish lived a life true to myself’. I was reading this book and I thought, I've actually got a 91-year-old grandma. I think I'm going to go home and interview her.”

When Vicky did sit down with her 91-year-old grandmother for that interview, her insights underpinned Vicky’s approach to setting goals and priorities in your own life.

“I asked her those questions: what are your regrets? What would you say to your younger self? What does success mean to you? How did you have a successful 50 year marriage?” she says.

“And some of the answers were not only funny, but they were also really powerful in that it was family, travel, having fun, all those things that sometimes we don't make time for but at the end of our life, we wish we had made more time for them. So, I'll hopefully be sharing some of secrets in her honor maybe, on the day.”

Find out more about the Women in Tax Congress.


About Vicky Jones

In 2013 Vicky swapped her career of 15 years in the media industry in London and Sydney to follow her passion to inspire and empower women to be the best they can be. She does this through coaching, facilitation and keynote speaking for large private and public sector clients.

Over the last 4 years Vicky has focused on a number of gender initiatives and mentoring programs designed to help women transform and grow in confidence, assisting them to move forward in their careers with clarity and purpose.

Vicky is a full-engagement teacher and guide. More than a coach; she takes you on a personalised journey toward success and fulfilment, teaching you the tools you need to achieve an abundant future. After being in the room with Vicky, she is sure to leave individuals feeling energised and inspired to put their new learning and knowledge into practice.