The success trap
Here is a topic that has been on my mind lately: money, success, fame.
I have met a rather famous person as one might say and she has asked me whether I would like to be famous one day and how would I deal with it if it were to happen. I said I wouldn’t mind but it’s also not a place I ambition to get to. I prefer to be valuable than successful. And I think that by focusing on being valuable I will be content, and successful on my terms. She said she sometimes wishes nobody knew her. That there is always someone recognizing her on the streets and she can’t just be. That sounds terrifying to me.
When is it enough? When do we get to a place we say “okay I’m good here”?
I have listened to an amazing podcast episode by Steven Bartlett and he says that money will increase your happiness level until the point you can sustain your basic needs, and then it’s a flat line and will endure pleasure. The thing is pleasure is highly addictive and temporary.
Happiness comes from the perspective we have, what we already own and the people we already have, no matter how small that is.
Let’s say you want to become a millionaire. You can decide on it, but you need to understand that everything you are and have is already enough.
The journey of always wanting more is the journey of a pleasure addict. Either you are or you want. You can’t be both at the same time.
I look at my life 6 months ago and I have almost everything I dreamed about: I live in my dream city, I have my dream job. I sat down to write what would make me happy and I only came up with three things. I have and am so much more than I could have ever imagined. Yet, I’m not serene. I still think I am not enough and need to be more, I still have some negative talk that awakens anxiety and I still focus too much on what I am not. It prevents me from being present with other people and leads to emotional drops which prolong the ongoing cycle.
Focusing on the destination + strict personal KPIs
Too much going on in different fields
Oversharing my personal emotions/ goals
I will stop keeping track of everything I do daily, and instead, just be and eventually put things together (books I read, countries I visit, etc.)
What made sense at the time is probably not aligned with my direction anymore. Not giving my best is impacting my mental health. I will read “the dip” by Seth Godin and understand what and when to give up.
I present results and never talk about what I wish to achieve. I already put too much pressure on myself I don’t need anyone’s validation. It might be a coping mechanism. Last year I have shared a lot of what I was feeling and going through emotionally and I think it did more harm than good, by damaging relationships and creating emotional dependence on other people. I will leverage what I share since there are only three people I want/ need input from.
I have upcoming coffee chats with people I admire and I will put my insecurities on the table. I am also aware most people feel like this but I am a problem solver by nature so even though I won’t find the answer, I will keep on asking questions.