The road to success requires vision, positive attitude, hard work and sacrifice. Dreams and positive thinking are not enough; without hard work and sacrifice, they are pointless.
Summer M. Davenport once wrote,
“Positive thinking by itself does not work. Your embodied vision, partnered with vibrant thinking, harmonized with active listening, and supported with your conscious action will clear the path for miracles.”
Success, however, should not be an end in itself. Viktor Frankl, the celebrated author of “Man’s Search For Meaning,” once said:
“Don’t aim at success – the more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue.”
We should not just work for success, we should work for significance in what we do; in the same manner that we work not just for a living but also for a meaningful and happy life.
Santi Getalado, a fellow ex-seminarian friend, once wrote on his FB page the following beautiful lines:
“Many people today may be climbing their ladders of success only to realize that their ladders of success are leaning against wrong walls. Many people today may be running very fast towards a direction only to find out that they are actually running in the wrong direction or, sad to say, just the opposite direction. That is why many people today are successful and materially affluent but are unhappy, feeling discontented, unfulfilled and, sometimes, guilty. In life, it is not how fast you run; it is where you are headed to that matters most. Did it ever happen in your life when you have been very busy working for a living but have forgotten to live a meaningful life? Have you been very busy lately accumulating your wealth, but you have blatantly disregarded your health? Have you been very zealous in your business and profession but much lacking in time for your children? Have you been very particular with results that you unwittingly disregarded relationships?”
Very well said, my friend. Because success is one thing, but happiness is another thing. Working for a living is one thing, but living meaningfully is another thing. What is wealth if you disregard your health? What’s the use of having lucrative “positions and possessions” if your relationships are broken? What is success if you don’t find meaning or significance – at the very least, in yourself – or in what you do?
Profoundly, therefore, we should not only aim for success, but for meaning and significance in our endeavours – and happiness will follow.