Success – The Self Inflicted Suffering

Success is an interesting yet funny concept. It is the constant driving force of our lives and considered the most important pursuit.

Birth till Death

From the time we start school, to the time we die, everything around us is measured by others’ perception of “success” and our self-worth is then determined by how high or low we sit on that scale. The scale of money, power, beauty, designation, the list goes on and on.

This just leads to a constant hamster on a wheel situation, in that we are running from one goal to the next, seeking fulfillment and happiness through it, however it’s never fully achieved.

“In today’s rush we think too much, seek too much, want too much – and forget about the joy of just being” – Eckhart Tolle

Never Enough

We bring enormous pain and suffering to ourselves because of our conditioning of never being good enough and the constant measuring of ourselves to determine our self-worth. We get ourselves into constant hamster on a wheel situation where we are run from one goal to the next, seeking fulfilment and happiness through it, however never fully achieving it.

This constant measuring against the yardstick of success is laid down by others’ – family, friends, society in general. This means that we are never able to feel as though we are enough:

Never beautiful enough

Never rich enough

Never famous enough

Never thin enough

This everlasting pursuit means that we can never feel content, joyful or happy with what we already have because when one target is achieved, we are already on to the next one.

It also leads to a great deal of self-inflicted suffering, as we are constantly comparing ourselves to others’ and that is a sure way to cause negative feelings of sadness, self-loathing and worry. There will always be someone with “more”.

How to Gauge Your Success

So here’s a thought: why don’t you give up on this mad pursuit and begin to focus more on what you genuinely want, what brings you real joy, and pursue that instead, however trivial that may sound.

Gauge your success by how happy and joyful you are, instead of how many things you have accumulated.

“Respond to any call that makes your soul happy” – Rumi


Slow down, stop struggling, stop the so-called hustle and grind, stop the effort and the constant battle. Laugh more, enjoy more, be more mindful of the surrounding abundance, experience more and take the time to “smell the roses”.

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