Success. It's easy to define it in narrow terms, and we label others or ourselves based on that specific definition. For example, LeBron James is a success, because he is better than anyone else at basketball. Warren Buffet is a success because of his accomplishments in the investment world. We even do it with companies. Apple. Amazon. Microsoft.
But, so much more goes into being a success, much of it easily overlooked, much of it unseen. Indeed, LeBron James is a phenomenal basketball player but that is just one realm of success. How does he treat others? Good friend, husband, father, son, etc.? Amazon does an admirable job of selling and delivering products efficiently, but how does it treat its employees? How does its approach affect society in general? Other companies?
And what about important character traits that aren't easily identifiable? Humility? Integrity? Sincerity? Those can often lead to success in some of the more identifiable areas of life such as ones's career but not always. The person of integrity sometimes loses out financially to someone willing to cut corners, the humble person to the boastful, the sincere one to the deceptive. Still, those character traits are to be admired regardless of the outcome. Simply possessing and displaying those characteristics signifies success regardless of the outcome.
I'm not sure how to define success, simply proposing that we take a second before labeling others a complete success and then comparing ourselves to that label. Better to celebrate their accomplishments in one area and maybe aspire to similar success, while also realizing that, because of their humanity, they fall short in other areas. Such an approach prevents idealizing them and then holding ourselves to some impossible standard.