What does success mean to you?

It is almost the end of the year. The time that one normally reflects on what was achieved,  what still needs to be done, and what will be the new goals for the future.

The following piece is quoted from the book, Zest for Life, written by Dawn Breslin. It is thought provoking and I would like to share it with you.

“The Oxford Dictionary defines success as: “favourable outcome of accomplishment, attainment of wealth, fame or position”.

For so many of us, the emphasis in our school years was about being the best in everything and always striving to do better. Success and competition was greatly encouraged and the pattern of thinking has been embedded into our subconscious minds. So firmly was it embedded that it is now how we measure the way our lives are shaping up.

Even when we leave school the same thinking pattern prevails. If we don’t consider our lives to be a success, then we are often left with negative feelings, emptiness, poor self-esteem, and low self-confidence. We continue to focus on getting more, being better, or being the best. The expectation of society, our parents, our partners, and our peer groups – not to mention ourselves – dictates that we should have more money, more possessions, a bigger house, a bigger car, a better education, a better job, etc.

Constantly living by these core values, focusing on getting more, and thinking about all the things that we don’t have in our lives blocks us from seeing the natural beauty and joy that surrounds us every single day.

In Eastern wisdom, the foundations for achievements are almost the opposite:

Success is about being happy, connected to spirit, fulfilled, calm, energized, and content.

There needs to be harmony and balance in our lives. Of course we need to aspire to create goals in order to fulfil our dreams and aspirations, but our goals and aspirations need to be based on a firm foundation of enjoying our lives. This is a priority if we are to enjoy the journey of fulfilling our hearts’ desires.

There is absolutely no point in striving for future goals if we miss out on the true value and joy of everyday living.”

Mother Theresa once said: “We cannot all do great things, however, we can all do small things with great kindness.” This is part of the joy of everyday living.

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