Thursday, September 28, 2006

Success? “I don’t know anything about that.”…

With the month ending, I thought I should probably add a kind of post-mortem on the success survey. Well, it didn’t work as well as I’d hoped. While I received over a dozen responses, all of them very insightful, I was hoping for a lot more.

Today, I think I found a reason why the responses were so spare.

I asked someone about the survey and if she’d received it. She had. “But I didn’t have anything to add.”

I didn’t quite understand. “Anything to add?”

She said, “It was about success, wasn’t it? I don’t know anything about that.”

Don’t know anything about that.

In the past month, I’ve found myself buffeted by just this attitude. As if their own success is something people know nothing about. As if success should be left to someone else.

Abdicating the success of your life to another – shying away from that most primary of responsibilities… where do people think that’s going to lead them? And yet, I’ve run into that same (lack of) philosophy wherever I turn.

It frightens me.

I don’t think of myself as up on a mountain – but in this one case I can’t think of another analogy. It’s not just that people are apathetic about living successful lives but, rather, that they fear it on some kind of primal, phobic level. And I can certainly understand that. After all, my neurosis about being successful in my own life is what’s driving me to write this book. But to shy away from it, to claim no responsibility for it… that’s just wrong.

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