The human heart was—and remains—a mystery to me. But I’m learning. I have to. —Anthony Bourdain

Let’s define success

Being in my late twenties, recently uprooted from the path I thought my life was taking, I have been thinking about success. Growing up, we were all conditioned to think that success at this point in our lives is making a lot of money, starting a family, and having fun doing it.

But does being successful in one side of your life and not the others automatically equal to failure? Does work-a significant other to share it with = being a loser? Or does being totally happy with your relationship but hating every single moment of your working life mean that as a person, you’ve failed singularly?

Too often, it happens that one part of your life is utterly amazing, but the others, just kind of meh. We take the bad with the good. We tell ourselves that while we trudge along, taking what we can, that “this is the real world” or “welcome to life”.

Or is it?

Do we need to swallow bitter pills with every bolt of happiness? Or can we do both? And does it really happen? Do you, right now, know anyone who is ultimately happy with the life they’re living? Forget the petty, small annoyances of everyday living like traffic or the smelly guy next to you on the train, but life as a whole.

Do you think you’re successful? Are you on the path towards success? Or are you just taking the crap because you have an ounce of joy on another dimension of your existence?

I do realize that this entry is asking more than explaining anything, but I really do want to get the input of my 11 readers.

How do you define success? Are you successful?

3 responses to “Let’s define success”

  1. I think it was when I’m writing my 30th birthday post on my blog when I tealize that success is not in your currently financial state or material possessions, maybe not even in your status in life. I think success is about the people you journey your life with. If you’re having a crappy job,it becomes a success when you know you’re doing it for the people you love. If you have to endure this crappy life, it starts to make sense when you think about who you’re living it. In the same way, if you have all the money you need, all the material things you ever want, an awesome job that fulfills you or allows you to do what you want, what’s the good of all of those things if you don’t share it with someone other than yourself ? For me, when I look at everything in my life — good things, bad things, horrible days, happy days — in the light of who I’m living it for and with, then I start feeling like the most successful and happy person in the world 🙂

  2. That’s a great way of looking at it Riz, I do think it depends on your perspective. In general, the “are you successful” question greatly depends on the person’s outlook, and yours is a very positive one. 🙂
    Thanks Mami! 🙂

  3. I think when talking about success, even though we would like to think that material possessions don’t mean as much in the grand scheme of things, especially in the spiritual sense, they actually do matter a lot. When people have money, they can cover their basic needs and when they have an awful lot of it, they can do more stuff than other people can. So I think success is still founded on a good deal of material possessions, and I mean money.

    It’s true though that money can’t buy you everything. Money is just another way to achieve something–that “something” which ultimately gratifies whatever’s lacking in us. To me, that something is seeing my family happy. When I see they’re happy, I feel content and that makes me appreciate the little successes in my life. As a whole though, we have a long way to go to be “truly happy” because we have a long way to go to feel secure. I guess when I’m at that point where I know they’re secure because they can always rely on me and I won’t fail, only then can I consider myself truly successful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.