However much we claim that we love surprises, the fact is that we want everything to be planned. The fear of not
knowing what is going to happen next in our lives is often the biggest reason behind anxiety in the minds of many people. We look around and we find friends and other people who have it all figured out : which course they want to pursue, how they will get there, the job they would get after the course, their salary and what not. And here you are, still to make up your mind on what suits you the best, still thinking whether financial institutions are the way to go or you are made for bureaucracy or it is the corporate sector that is your true calling. You look for answers all around, only to find none. Rather, the more you look out, the more such people you come across who have it all figured out. But is it really so bad not to have it all figured out by now?
Making plans for a far-off future blinds up the opportunities that the present day throws to us. Do you think Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg planned to drop out of one of the most prestigious colleges in the entire world? No they didn’t! They got an idea in which they believed more than they believed in their long-term plans and they took the plunge. But one thing that both of them did was to take the most out of any opportunities provided to them by their institute or their peer groups. Your success is not dependent upon how long you have been planning for it, It is dependent on how you work towards it once you figure it out
‘Aim big in life’ is what you have been told ever since you could stand on your feet. But is it a compulsion to aim to conquer the world? Certainly not! There is a difference between ‘means’ and ‘ends’. Success in life is not the end. The end is to have a happy and contented life. Success is just the ‘means’ to achieve your end. If you concentrate too much on the ‘means’ and leave out the ‘end’, you would never reach your destination. The ‘end’ is not the same for everyone. For some, money might be a good determinant of a ‘happy and contented life’ while for others, it may be the power or fame. In any of these cases, you are not wrong as long as you remain true to yourself and use the right means to achieve them.
You have to define happiness for yourself. Going by someone else’s definition would never give you the feeling of being content that you are aspiring for in your life. For even if you end up achieving your goal, your quench for success would remain unfulfilled since it was never your dream. Too often in life, we end up doing things since we want to prove to ‘someone’ that we are capable of doing it. However, you would never be able to change their opinions that they have formed about you. Once you achieve one of the goals they set for you, they will give you another goal just to keep you busy. Life is too short to spend on achieving goals that someone else sets for you. Set your own goals and achieve them only as per your own timeline
Most people strive for success because it would bring them fame and prosperity. But a very few aim for success because it would give them a feeling of being content. That is why all successful people are not always happy. Your happiness comes with satisfaction and not with success. Thus, define your success carefully and then work towards achieving it
Yes, the time is short. But life is not a 3-hour long examination where the invigilator is standing over you ready to snatch your paper as soon as the timer rings. It is alright to take your time since when it comes to life there is only one invigilator—you, yourself.
(Surendra Kumar Sachdeva)