As strange as it might seem, success, one of the most popular concepts in our modern world, is the most difficult thing to understand for many people. Maybe that would be the main reason for not getting it at all? Maybe because the core definition of success is so foggy we have a hard time identifying a successful outcome? What is success to you? What is the final touch that defines a successful lifestyle?
If you started to wonder even for a split of a second about the answer to that question, I bet you have difficulties in enjoying your life. I know I did. I struggled for years with the socially generated concepts of success and tried a lot of paths in order to achieve those – sometimes even opposed – states of success.
It literally took me years to understand the core meaning of success. It’s difficult to understand that because most of the definitions are socially generated and every one of them implies some artificial link between you and the others. In order to be successful you have to be acknowledged by somebody else. You need proof and most of the times you need somebody else to tell you that you are a successful human being.
That’s strange. That’s the wrong way, you know, to be told you are successful, to need external validation processes. Being successful should be something that comes the other way around: from within. The modern society put such a tremendous pressure on being popular. Success is often defined by the number of people that have heard about you. Being known is enough of a success for many people, even if this popularity has no generated value associated with it.
Even if you do something that is totally in accord with your inner values, you have to correspond to a set of standardized principles in order to achieve success. In modern society, money and recognition are amongst the most important success definitions. You might be a complete and fulfilled person, yet if you don’t have tons of money or you’re not quite a popular figure, you’re not going to be accepted as a successful person.
Trying to work with ready made definition of success, without first understanding what those definitions mean to you, as a person, is like building a house from a broken foundation. You might know from your heart how to build your house, but you’ll be forced to start building on a broken foundation. Your dream house might be built as you wish, but it will fall apart sooner or later, because of the broken foundation.
So, from this broken foundation, every step toward success will be a painful and difficult step in order to achieve something that you don’t even know. You’ll find yourself fighting to achieve money even if you have enough for your needs, or you’ll start to make compromises in order to be acclaimed as a popular person. In fact, you’ll start to get out of sync with what you need. You’ll start doing things you don’t even understand. You’ll start to feel bad about what you’re doing.
And the most important thing is that, once “successful”, you’ll experiment a complete and unbearable feeling of emptiness and frustration. You have something that you didn’t even want in the first place. And what you really wanted is not there anymore, leaving you empty and sad.
Being Successful Coming From Within
All of this because you resisted your inner being. You succumbed to ready made success principles, without understanding the most important part: what YOU really want. What makes YOU happy. What YOU can offer in an unique and fulfilling way…
Everything starts to lighten when you’re doing things you like. Those things will most likely not be getting you millions of dollars. Hmm, I just realized that’s not a rule, by the way. They might get you as well millions of dollars, it’s just not a rule that you’ll actually need millions of dollars in order to express yourself to your full potential.
If those things are totally and honestly filling your existence, they will lead you to success anyway. Every thing you like to do is a solid foundation. Every thing that feels good to be done is a guarantee that you’ll make yourself happy, sometime. Every thing that you do without effort is a promise of undoubtable success.
The real joy of life always comes from within. The real need for success always come from you to the others, not the other way around. Whenever you need too much proof that what you’re doing is correct, you’re going away form your own navigation tools, setting course on somebody else’s path. You’ll crash, sooner or later.
Getting Used To Success
Being successful is not a question of how to get there, but how to get used to it. For me that’s the most important discovery about success. Most of the people resist to success because they don’t know what to do once they get there. And they even don’t know they are there. I actually met hundreds of successful people that didn’t even realize that they lived a successful life.
There is a powerful social conditioning that postulates that success is difficult. So people obey to this and stay in difficult situations, waiting for their success to bloom. But it doesn’t. Because they’re on the wrong definition of success. And that definition can’t possibly be correct for everyone, mathematically speaking. Having a limited set of principles defining success is just not working for everybody.
Every human being is different and every one has an internal mission that will make his life bloom. And they’re here to do this with all their power and skills. They’re here to be in a larger and more powerful flow of other people with their own different skills and expectations. They’re here to be happy, and success is just one of the subtle flashing lights that is making them aware of that…
Success is a state of well being. An equilibrium in motion. A personal choice. It is not a social label. Is not a widely accepted set of criteria, that, once met, turn you into a successful human being.
You are successful when being successful is not a stress anymore. When you are outside that difficult path, socially induced. When you feel right about what you’re doing and when you’re doing everything right.
It might be making money, or it might be traveling the world. It might be doing business, corporate style, or it might be teaching others about being happy.
Success is happiness acknowledged.
Running For My Life - from zero to ultramarathoner
The spooky thing about depression is that it sneaks in. There aren’t really trumpets and loud voices announcing: “Hail, hail, this is depression entering the room, all rise!” Nope. It’s slow, silent, creepy. It doesn’t even look like depression. It starts with small isolation thoughts like: “Maybe I shouldn’t get out today, I just don’t feel like going out”. And then it does the same next day. And then the day after that and so on. And then it starts to whisper louder and louder in your ears: “Why would you go outside, you loser? Didn’t have enough yet? Want more people to make fun of how much of a big, fat loser you are?”
And then you start to breath in guilt and shame, instead of air. Every breathe you take is putting more dark thoughts into your body.
Until you get stuck. You can’t move anymore. At all.
If you want to know how I got out of this space, eventually, check out my latest book on Amazon and Kindle.