What is success? Better: what does being successful mean to me?
What’s the relationship to being successful and being happy. Does success equate to happiness? Is happiness success?
Part of the problem is that success can be easily quantified and divided into categories. A successful business venture, a kid getting into the college of their choice, driving the car you always wanted, a grateful student and so on, basically tangible stuff. Any goal achieved can be categorized as a success. Happiness is more elusive. Happiness, it seems defies categorization. How do you quantify it in an everyday meaningful way? Is happiness the sum of all those successes? (Clearly not, in my mind at least).
Actually, that is easy, happiness and success are orthogonal, (I love using the word ever since Apple, in their Apple way, used it in a promotion for something or other a long time ago).
So success does not come bundled with happiness and hopefully happiness is not dependent on Success. Although I will readily acknowledge (admit) that being happy without success is hard. But is happiness fueled by success genuine? (I was going to write ‘real’ but what is real can be a subject for another day). Still, what is genuine and does it matter as long as you’re happy? I’d say it does matter. Because the happiness is tied to success. I believe this is a false dichotomy.
Not any closer to defining success for myself yet.
For now, I think I am going to skip trying to define personal happiness. Right now that definition seems too elusive. Maybe part of the problem is that I bind happiness with contentment. Maybe that’s another false dichotomy. There is so much chaos, and the only constant is change (which is not really a constant if you think about it). Maybe being happy requires being able to embrace this turmoil and getting comfortable with it. Instead, for myself, and perhaps people and general, although I am trying hard to keep this personal and avoid generalities, I try to bring constantly to my world. Thinking that constancy is one key to happiness after all the unexpected can be jarring and explode plans and intentions. When things go off-course, stress and anxiety arise and are those emotions antipodal to happiness? Getting comfortable with the uncomfortable might be one important facet of happiness.
Oops, still not talking about what success means to me. Maybe I’ll get to it tomorrow.