Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Price of Success

I've been thinking today about this concept of "The Price of Success". I have read a lot of books about habits, ways to be successful, different techniques and skills to learn. All kinds of things that, if applied correctly, should lead to success, happiness, all your wildest dreams...

Here is what bothers me though. They don't talk about what you give up. In order to be successful, it seems you almost have to be a slave to a routine and a certain way of thinking. Sure that sounds fine and dandy because you don't focus on it, all that is focused on is the rewards. But it's all starting to sound like a sales pitch again. I've learned the secret to a great sales pitch is never to talk about the product first, always start by establishing the customer's goals and dreams, then find some way to incorporate how your idea or product is essential to fulfillment of that dream. That way they're so fixated on something ethereal and far out that they forget about the short term inconvenience of what they are giving up to you, essentially their freedom.

Now, this may be totally off balance. Maybe these people really are trying to help. Maybe the success and happiness promised that they say they have attained is the end goal everyone should strive for. Maybe being a slave to this routine and habits and way of thinking is really the best way to develop as a human being, and secretly we think we want freedom but the reality is that we just want the freedom to pick out our cage.

The question though is, what if I want to make "bad" choices? What if I don't want to be frugal? What if I want to not think about the consequences of my actions? What if I want to gorge? Maybe I would never read their book or advertisement. But does having doubt, having this sense of a conscience, this uncertainty about the direction I'm taking with my life really just make me a pawn that's easily coerced by their speak?

What if the real answer is your answer? What if reading this advice is just a deterrent from you actually just doing what you want but by providing it, I'm feeding your insecurity and weakness, perpetuating your fixation on needing someone else to tell you what is right because you don't have the confidence to believe in yourself?

Maybe the reason people reach a level of success is because they stopped listening, they stopped looking, they just did what they wanted to do, fought through the resistance and became free of the lack of trust in themselves? That's why people who lose and lose big do so well. They forget about everything else, loss all the inhibitions that they've collected because they reach a point where it's just about survival, not about the shallow constructs that are so easy to build around yourself and trap you where you are.

But how can you be sure I'm right about this either? I'm just a talking head like the rest of them.

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