A lengthy talk with a friend, as they often do, finally arrived at the pivotal existential question we’d been searching for the past hour or two. It was our version of an Elbert Hubbard quote that asks: Are we successful because of our vast and varied knowledge of things, our noble actions and efforts, or simply, because of who we genuinely are?
Both of us being type A personalities, we endeavored to evaluate each of the three independently but found it impossible to arrive at any one as the explanatory answer.
We concluded that success, being an ever-evolving and truly individual destination, is in fact no destination at all. Success is not dependent on knowledge, for many are successfully uneducated. It couldn’t be based alone on actions either as behaviors have to originate in motivations– things much more intrinsic to the soul.
The horseshoe that came closest to a ringer of an answer was the remaining variable…with a very important twist:
Success is a result of who we are…becoming.
Success is not stasis, a stagnant fragile balance. If our destinations that define success are constantly evolving and changing, necessarily, who we are is caught up in the same truth.
We impact and are impacted by events of our lives just as raw elements from the periodic table mix with one another to create elaborate, new elements. We have to have knowledge to be that scientist, motivation and desire to do and create something new or better for ourselves and others, and those, essentially, make us who we are now and better yet, who we are ever becoming.
Satisfied with our mental pursuits, we poured another cup of coffee, believing we’d been successful in our analysis. That is, until we realized that if our successful outcome was indeed not a destination as we had originally posited, we would have to meet again to re-evaluate someday.
We enjoy each other’s company immensely.
I think our reason for trying to tackle such an existential question wasn’t simply to arrive at an answer.
I think we just wanted an excuse to have to hang out again!