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Sarah Jessica Parker will change the way you think about success

Sarah Jessica Parker will change the way you think about success

Our favourite takeaway from our tour with SJP

BY Nicky Champ, 5 min READ
 

We’ve just wrapped up our whirlwind tour with Sarah Jessica Parker.

Over 3500 women and men joined us in Sydney and Melbourne, and Sarah Jessica didn’t disappoint. SJP showed up in a big way.  She was warm, gracious, humble, funny, inclusive and we could’ve listened to her talk for hours. We’ve walked any with so many insights, but we particularly loved what she said about success; what she teaches her son, James Wilkie, about it and how she measures it in her own life. It’s completely changed the way we think about success.

While Sarah Jessica acknowledged it’s wonderful to be recognised and included by meaningful people and organisations in the entertainment industry, she isn’t driven by winning accolades or awards.

“Success can be tiny and it can be private,” Sarah Jessica told Fifi Box (and 1500 people in the room) at our Melbourne event. “Triumphs can be unrecognisable to the naked eye. Triumphs are deeply personal. And honestly sometimes [for me], it’s an exchange with somebody that I’ve been nervous about having or getting the opportunity to publish a manuscript. With that comes a huge amount of work but with that comes privilege and opportunity.”

“Success doesn’t have to be recognisable to many. Success is the accumulation of things you feel good about.”

Her son, James Wilkie is on the cusp of turning 17 and she’s at a point where she’s having lots of big life conversations. She shared that she tells him that success is like a “crazy marathon” that doesn’t have to be made public.

“No-one else has to know about it,” she said. “It’s how you feel good about something.”

“It’s always so hard to give good advice, but I always say to him, ‘Do you feel good when you walk out of the room? Did you do everything you could do to be prepared?’”

“There’s so much attention paid to successful people. To people with money and that’s a very odd thing that happens – we all talk about the dollars made, but there’s this in-between time. Success isn’t going to happen to everybody, but so many people all over the world are doing incredible things and having really rich lives.”

“It’s always so hard to give good advice, but I always say to him, ‘Do you feel good when you walk out of the room? Did you do everything you could do to be prepared?’”

“I say to my son, you have to define success. Don’t look out there for somebody else’s definition of who you should be or your opinion of yourself. You have to keep your own counsel. It’s important to take into account other people and be inspired, but I don’t want somebody else’s idea of success to be his version of success.”

It’s hard to command the attention of thousands of people first thing in the morning but all 1500 of us were hooked on SJP’s every word. It was so quiet during the 50-minute interview, the slightest clatter of cutlery (and the tiny cry of Fifi’s gorgeous newborn) could be heard, and both times SJP graciously stopped the interview and asked if everyone was okay. She simultaneously gave so much during the interview and left us wanting more. We could’ve happily skipped work and sat for hours listening to her insights.

From now on, we’re going to use her benchmark of success and think about how we feel each time we leave the room of an important meeting or business opportunity.  We’ll never know if Sarah Jessica felt good when she walked out of the room in Melbourne, but she abso-fricking-lutely should, we’ve never had a better start to the week.

 

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