Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The only measure of success is how well we cope with disappointment

The title of this blog entry is based on the film 'The best exotic Marigold Hotel' which I mentioned at the end of my last blog entry. Our success in life is usually measured against material things like income, house(s) and cars or against achievements in our careers.

This phrase, in contrast, indicates, that those things do not matter. How satisfied and happy will my life be if I never own a house or a big car? How can I still go to work with a smile every day if I am not nominated for the hoped promotion?

Besides those more materialistic success, this sentence challenges us to find success by finding coping mechanisms when life hits hard.
What if a very close friend of yours will not make it to your wedding? What if you realise after 30 years of marriage that it has not been working for the past 15, it will not be working anymore and your dream of 'happy ever after' crushes right in front of you?
What if your best friend betrays you or you discover your child is stealing from you? What if you find out that your life savings are gone due to a wrong investment or that your health will not allow you to ever go on the overseas trip you have been dreaming about your whole life? 

Tough questions, no easy answers. However, the sentence challenges us to accept that real success is not about the things that go right and the things we do well. It is actually about all the failures, mistakes and tragedies in life. The tools and ways we find to cope with those and overcome those are the true success stories of our lives. 

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