Are you grappling with the typical year-end “Should I stay, or should I go?”
It is that time of the year where, amidst year-end fatigue, we ‘take stock’ of our success and might find ourselves grappling with the idea of making a career change or throwing in the towel as entrepreneur …
Even when on paper you have had a tremendously successful year, a feeling of unease might still be settling in and you find yourself asking, “is it all really worth it?”
And this is where the push-and-pull between success and significance becomes eminent.
- Success is defined as, “the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.”
- Significance is defined as, “meaningful, important.”
Often, we drive hard at being successful – and success could mean various things to various people – stability, surpassed financial goals, luxurious living, their title, etc.
In my work as a business coach I focus much of my time on helping people to find true meaning in their lives. I so often see how ‘success’ comes up short in its ability to provide that feeling of fulfillment … leaving people disillusioned and thinking that they must still do or acquire even more things for them to be happy.
And this is where I pose the question to them, “Is the problem really in the things you are doing or is it in the WHO you are doing them for?”
Because here is the thing – when we do things from a self-serving perspective only, we can make all the external changes that we want, and still end up feeling short-handed or empty.
However, when we start putting other people first, THAT’S when feelings of inner peace and contentment come to the fore.
So, what does it boil down to?
It simply means this – whatever your work or deeds, you need to change your thinking from What’s in it for me? To What can I do for others?
And now the next question(s) popping up might be, “Is my success then bad?”, or, “Is it wrong of me to enjoy my success?”
· And the answer to both these questions is simply, “No.”
Success is NOT bad – because realistically speaking, often we must be successful ourselves and become valuable first before we can and have something to give to others.
· And you definitely should delight in your success – you’ve earned it! However, it is when the fruits of your success are only ever enjoyed self-indulgently that you will experience that feeling of emptiness and unfulfillment.
As John Maxwell teaches, “Self-centeredness and fulfillment cannot peacefully co-exist. They’re incompatible.”
PS – Speaking of fulfillment … if job fulfillment is eluding you – follow the link to my discussion on how to find job fulfillment HERE