Saturday, April 21, 2012

Success can not be a goal but a Byproduct

Thought a lot on what is success. Many a times it is a state of mind. If you think of moments when you felt successful in the past life, you see that many a times it is an accomplishment which is recognized by society or people around you. Some times it is just something that is very valuable to you nothing related to people. But many a times societial recognition, people perceptions define success. People who are rich are considered successful in general. But are they really successful? They might be successful in the mind of society and people, but what about their own perception of success. Do they feel successful?

If success is a perception and state of mind, we need to define what is success for us. No matter what we achieve or what we earn there will be people who are better than us in that. You earn 1 crore and there are people who earn 10 crore.  Also there are people who earn 10k and feel that they are very successful. In short we set expectations for ourselves, keep on comparing / benchmarking expectations w r t peers, other people and define a state/ condition where we will feel successful. As we keep on accomplishing, we redefine and elevate the standards of conditions defining success for us. If we fail to achieve the set standards, we feel that we are not yet successful or unsuccessful. These set standards are highly influenced by peers, society and people. This is where problem comes. We start doing things for people. Thats what Steve Jobs explains in his keynote at Stanford.

Is success important? If yes then why? Success makes you feel good about yourself. Society recognizes you, respects you. This respect makes you feel better and cycle goes on. To achieve this cycle lot of efforts are poured in by us. Some efforts which we love to put in and some efforts we hate to put in. After that if we achieve success ( defined condition), we feel good. Otherwise it makes us feel sad.  

After much thought I feel that you should not care about success as long as you are happy about current state and are enjoying life. You should keep on doing good things and things which you truly enjoy doing. As long as you are enjoying and happy about yourself, why to care if you are successful or not. Success can not be a goal but a byproduct. If we keep doing good things with enjoyment, sooner or later we will get fruits - which will give us recognition in the eyes of society and make us successful from peoples' point of view. During whole process we are happy about ourselves as we are doing things we like. Even if we do not succeed or succeed late, it is ok because we are happy about ourselves. Instead of defining a state of success and chasing it , it is better to keep on doing good things which we enjoy and be successful.

There is no point in taking life too seriously and chasing success. On daily basis doing enjoyable good work is very important. Enjoyment and happiness is the goal, success follows in. We generally take it other way round.    

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