The Power of Defining Your Terms

life on your own termsLast time, we discussed a new paradigm for thinking about our lives: you are the entrepreneur in charge of running a very important enterprise – your life.



Terms can inspire action

Our definition of bigg success – life on your own terms – explicitly recognizes that “terms” are important. Not just words, but words that matter. Words that empower us.

A single term can cut through the complexity of a subject and make it simple to understand. And therein lies the power of terms.

To create understanding and, from that understanding, actions to achieve bigg success.

Life on your own terms. What are those terms for you?


georgeOne of the terms we use here at Bigg Success is goal-getter. I love that word. It combines go-getter with goal-getting. So it’s a powerful word to me that implies movement toward what I want to achieve.


Terms can limit us

Like many things, terms can also work against us. They can limit what we achieve.

We can define ourselves too small. We can view our businesses too tightly. We may see our careers too narrowly.


marylynnFor example, I defined myself for years as a radio DJ. That’s what I was and that’s what I was known as. But when I started using the term “broadcaster”, I could see a bigger picture and new possibilities. I am now a “broadcaster” who happens to use the internet as my medium.


With terms, we can also magnify our shortcomings and minimize our strengths. It’s so easy to do.

Your terms are unique

Notice that we define bigg success as life on your own terms.

Your terms are not my terms. They are uniquely yours.

Your terms have the power to inspire you to bigg success.

To lift you up when you’re down.

To push you even higher when you’re up.

Terms as time frames

There’s another meaning to the “terms” of life on your own terms. We think of school terms – a semester, for instance.

It’s valuable to think about “terms” in terms of time. In other words, as phases. To achieve the bigg success we dream of, we will set our goals in time frames.

For example, say you want to be the best attorney in your area. That’s your end goal.

In the first term, your goal may be to complete your undergraduate degree.

Term 2 – get your law degree. Term 3 – pass the bar. And so on.

You break up your long-term goal into terms – time frames – to make sure you stay on track to reach bigg success. 


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The terms of the deal

See how rich a single term can be? But we’re not through yet!

There are two primary factors in any deal – the price and the terms. There’s a basic negotiating principle:

You get to pick the price or the terms, but not both.

If you ever get to pick both, you better get a great deal!

Do you see the implication of that principle to bigg success? If you set the terms, bigg success sets the price.

The higher the level of success you seek, the higher the price will be. You must be willing to pay that price or you can’t – you won’t – be able to live your life on your own terms.

There’s a story about an amateur golfer who approached a famous golfer. We believe it was Tom Watson. The story goes something like this …

The amateur said, “I’d give anything to drive a golf ball the way you do.”

Tom Watson said, “No, you wouldn’t.”

The amateur said, “Yes, I would.”

After several more rounds of this, the pro decided to let the amateur in on his secret.

Tom Watson finally said, “I learned to drive the ball the way I do by going to the range every morning and driving a bucket of balls. When that bucket was empty, I drove another one. And another one.”

The pro continued, “I drove balls until I could feel blisters forming on my hands. And do you know what I did then? I kept driving balls. Before long, my hands were bleeding. So I drove another bucket of balls. Day after day, week after week, I drove balls in spite of the pain. Eventually, my hands were full of callouses. That’s how I learned to drive the golf ball the way I do.”

So if you want to drive golf balls like a pro, there’s your price. You set the terms, but then you must pay the price to reach bigg success.

It’s worth it because it’s what you want. By the way, there is also a price to pay for not living your life on your own terms. We think that price is higher!

Share your terms

So what are your terms? What does life on your own terms mean to you?

And what terms inspire you?

You can share that with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG or sending us an e-mail at

We want to highlight the members of our community and their stories. In those stories, in our terms, is information and inspiration for all of us. So we all reach bigg success even faster!

Thanks so much for reading our post today.

Join us next time as we continue diving deeper into life on your own terms. We’ll talk about five very special terms – the five elements of bigg success.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success! 

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Related posts

What is Bigg Success?

Own Your Life

The 5 Elements of Bigg Success

The Bigg Idea Behind Bigg Success

7 replies
  1. Andrew R. Timms
    Andrew R. Timms says:

    George & Mary-Lynn, you are providing an empowering mindset here. Not only is the way of thinking you are teaching a powerful one, you are presenting it from a position of strength. Thank you.

    You have inferred it more than once in these postings, and it deserves a post or two of its own: just because we decide on our terms, doesn’t mean the rest of the world is going to agree or accept them. A very human and subtle mistake in claiming our own terms is to expect that just because we have delineated them, everyone else should see them in the same way. That is never the case.

    Each individual perceives the world in their own unique way, and they may believe that your terms conflict with their terms, and are therefore unacceptable. Whether we agree with them or not, the are seeing our terms as an obstacle to theirs.

    One of the ways we can cope with this conundrum is to begin by accepting that, based on their terms, they are right! If we had the same terms, we would see it the same way. That’s the only possibility. Why is this helpful? Because it is at least a step toward common ground. Without an effort to see reality as it is, for all parties, we cannot come up solutions that work for everyone involved.

    This is one suggestion from what I expect is a portfolio of ideas. George & Mary-Lynn, you are probably prepared to present others. Thank you for inviting me to be a part of the discussion.

  2. George & Mary-Lynn
    George & Mary-Lynn says:

    Andrew –

    Our term for your comment is …. excellent!

    You raise a very good point. Thanks for bringing it to the surface and adding to the conversation. We’ll discuss your point in an upcoming show.

  3. David Fendley
    David Fendley says:

    A term that strive for in my life is “admiration”. We all want to be admired and appreciated for our work, right?

    However, the most important term for me is “respect”. Whether it’s in regards to money, creativity, or a personal situation, every human being wants to be respected.

    A lot of problems could be solved if respect was provisioned more.

  4. George & Mary-Lynn
    George & Mary-Lynn says:

    David that is such a powerful term. Having that as a goal will definitely have a positive influence on whatever you do. And now we have Aretha Franklin’s R-E-S-P-E-C-T going through our heads! Thanks for your comment.


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] And success is one thing. BIGG success is another. Success isn’t free. BIGG success has an even higher price tag. […]

  2. […] got a great comment by Andrew R. Timms about this. He says, “… just because we decide on our terms doesn’t mean the rest […]

  3. […] Last time, we talked about how the words we use, the terms, can provide fuel for our bigg success. It’s all part of the definition of bigg success. Bigg success is life on your own terms. […]

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