Where Does Success Take Us?


Most of us work hard to be successful and where does this 'success' take us? What is the end result of all our hard labour? I heard Dave Chappelle, a comedian who WALKED AWAY from a $50,000,000 USD contract say, 'Success takes us where character cannot sustain us.'

Wow. Is he right? Does everyone climb a ladder to some level of achievement until they finally cannot cope morally or emotionally with where they arrived?

We know in the Peter Principle, people rise to their own level of incompetence. That is, they keep getting promoted for doing a good job until they finally achieve a position they cannot handle well and then get 'stuck' there.

BUT, do we rise in life to a level we can no longer ethically handle? In essence, working hard to eventually commit moral suicide? My take is both 'yes' and 'no'.

YES: If the success we seek is all OF this world. That is, the pursuit of money, fame, riches, power and the like, eventually it will consume us. Living in and for what this world has to offer will eventually lead us to make choices of low moral value. Learning what the world teaches us will get us more of what the world offers us.

NO: If the success we seek is for eternal glory and to be of greater service to God and humankind, this pursuit carries with it a morality implicit in the action. The joy of sharing and giving go hand in hand with the accumulation of wealth, not just an afterthought once the 'wealth' arrives.

This brings us to the real question for this week. Are you pursuing success defined as riches and a large bank account?

Do you seek success defined as a life focused on love, relationships, achievements for the good of humanity and a lifetime invested in learning, growing and sharing?

As the second one builds strong character and the first is devoid of character, I conclude that what Dave Chappelle said is probably correct for most people, but not for all.

What are YOU building your life around and what is YOUR main focus?

Michael Podolinsky


Michael Podolinsky CSP is a speaker and published author. He passionately develops productive leaders and teams

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