Friday, April 22, 2011

Failing at Success

A post from the past.
A friend once told me that I should stop majoring in minors. Another advised me that I needed to keep the main thing the main thing at all times. And then there was the pearl of wisdom from my bride who reminded me to stop and count the blessings already received. In the hustle and bustle of the pursuit of success and the search for that elusive significance we all seem to be in need of a gentle tug from within to slow down and realize that too much success may indeed be a failure. It sounds so simple yet becomes increasingly difficult to maintain the right balance between work, play, faith, family, finance and recreation. Why is all this success so maddening that in spite of the busyness we feel trapped and empty? How does one comprehend personal betrayal and empty promises when we know that we have succeeded in every arena of life individually but failed when we put the collective result in front of us?
A friend called me and told me of a project that had gone south after months of labor. Another requested prayer for his extended family in another part of the world, who were caught up in property disputes that seemed to spell ruin for familial harmony. Two viably productive, successful denizens of the world of banking and technology trying to cope with the failures of the moment in an otherwise productive and successful life. Do you ever look at all you have accomplished and wonder why some things just don’t make any sense? You give everything you have to a job, and all that you are capable of giving to your family and friends, and there is still that knot of emptiness in the pit of your stomach constantly asking you to do more. You feel that you are failing while trying to be successful. The consolation that you are not alone may be of little solace but understanding how to change may be the answer.
Years ago when I had the privilege of meeting the late Mother Teresa I was given one of her writings which simply asked me to look at success through the prism of a very profound question. She suggested that we would never be content with our pursuits if the definition of success did not have a finite answer to the question, “How much is enough?” This though provoking insight will allow you this week and beyond to measure success by asking yourself to look at your accomplishments in light of what would give you satisfaction. Fred Smith Sr. suggested that a habit of the heart that would allow this to come to fruition was to give more than you had and to keep less than you needed. The only way to succeed at success is to not fail in realizing that we probably already have more to be grateful for in what we have done. Use that as the fuel this week to look around your world so you can share the blessings that you have inherited for just being you.
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1 comment:

  1. Krish, deeply blessed by this article. It surely will slow me down in the midst of all the rush to succeed. Thank you. I look forward to other articles.