Beliefnet
Because This Is Your Life

There are two words that I know you use throughout your life on a regular basis that you feel is how your life has played out…

Success and failure.

There are two other words that I also know you use, most likely not as much. The difference here is that these other two words define your life much more accurately. I’ll come back to these in a minute.

Let’s first take a look at success and failure.

I’ve done this, we’ve all done this–and that is label ourselves as either being a success or failure. And many times we’ll have a tendency to label ourselves as being more of one than the other.

Does this apply to you?

If it does then keep reading because today you’ll discover something you most likely have not heard before.

Just about everyone has experienced moments of success and failure during their lives. And in some cases much more of one than the other.

There are some people who think their life was nothing but a failure. And they think that everything they did was doomed from the start. Whether it’s their finances, their relationships, or just how their life has played out in general.

Then you have the people who feel that everything they’ve done turned out to be successful. That everything they touched turned to gold.

This is at least what you see on the outside.

But guess what?

And here’s the part that’s incredibly important.

The second you think you’re successful, you’re often on your way down…

And the second you feel you’re failing, you’re usually on your way up.

Huh?

Let’s look at that…

And to start here’s a very unusual quote by Don Keough, the former president of Coca-Cola who said that the knowledge of failure can lead to success.

Here’s the quote…

“I have always been afraid of the word success. People, companies, and countries can get into trouble when they start to think they’re successful. They get arrogant.”

What Keough is basically saying is that it’s much wiser to come from a poised state of mind where you see yourself as being a success AND failure.

And this falls right in line with the fact that you’re a two sided person. You may experience moments of perceiving that you’re more of one side (for example, successful) than the other (failure).

But the fact is that you’re both and you need both.

And remember that the more you perceive yourself as being or trying to be more of one side, the more you’ll get the opposite side to come in and try and “balance you out” so to speak.

This is what Keough was also implying.

Therefore it is wise to not get too “up” when things go your way or too “down” when they don’t.

With that said let’s now come back to those other two words I mentioned earlier.

Instead of labeling yourself as a “success” or “failure” it is much wise to use the words “fulfillment” and “achievement..”

Why?

Because “fulfillment” embraces both sides, the success and failure, which you need. This is what helps you become more poised and balanced. By living your life this way you don’t get into the “extreme “ups” and “downs” which over time actually stops you from achieving what you would love to have.

The same is true about “achievement.” This embraces both sides as well. Because throughout your life you’ll achieve both “success” and “failure.”

And to paraphrase what Keough said, “the knowledge of failure can lead to success.”

The only way you can do this is to “achieve” failure because this paves the way for your success. You need both and they both come in pairs.

This is why labeling yourself and striving for one or the other is futile.

Because it’s very easy to get “puffed up” and “cocky” when we become successful. We become distracted, stop doing what we love, and forget what actually got us there. We become ungrateful.

When we perceive ourselves as a failure we get “down”, “beat ourselves up”, and have a tendency to go back to the basics and do high priority things that get us back on track.

This is also why it’s unwise to think in terms of “success” and “failure”…

But rather to think in terms of “fulfillment” and “achievement” because in this way you won’t get into those emotional mood swings…

And in the process you’ll be your true authentic self. You’ll be in a state of gratitude.

The bottom line is this…

If you have the time to be worried and concerned about success and failure, you’re distracting yourself from the tremendous amount of value you provide the world.

And certainly from realizing how unique and amazing of a person you are.

Yes, it’s important to strive for what you’d love to have in any area of your life and be able to know if you’ve achieved that.

But rather than getting hung up on whether you succeeded or failed…

When you realize that you have an equal balance of both, you actually achieve more of that originally perceived “success” you wanted all along…

While at the same time achieved the failure along the way that helped you to live the fulfilled, inspiring, and extraordinary life you wanted all along.

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