Overachieving is Not a Necessity
Success doesn’t have to be defined by the number of things you’ve achieved
We are living in a culture of numbers. The amount of money you make matters. The number of friends you have matters. The number of accomplishments you have matters.
Well, they matter to the people viewing your life from an outside perspective. But they shouldn’t matter to you.
Many people fall into the trap of comparing themselves to the standards of society. “What most people do is what I should do. If not, I am a failure.”
This is toxic thinking and can disease your mind and hurt your mentality moving forward.
Reaching the standards of society, or slightly finishing above the pack, is great for some people. These standards are things like making a lot of money and having a lot of friends. For some, this is happiness. And that’s great!
But different things make different people happy and the truly unique individuals in the world don’t fall into the numbers trap.
Individuals should be focusing on impactfulness over abundance.
Making a lot of money has its upsides — it provides security and can allow you to purchase things and experiences you enjoy. Having a lot of friends also has upsides — knowing more people gives you more opportunities to do fun things.
There are also major downsides to focusing on “having more,” however.
Making more money often comes at the cost of time — whether it be time in your day or even time in your life (stress kills!). If you are not happy doing the job that nets this high income, is it really worth it?
Having more friends can also cost precious time and mental clarity. Knowing more people opens you up to more deception, anger, and stress. At the end of the day, some people are very self-centered, and they will not flinch to hurt or deceive you if it helps them in any way. You shouldn’t be afraid to filter out the bad eggs, even if it means fewer fun opportunities.
There is an overall pressure in society to do more. Once you accomplish one goal, it’s time to move to the next.
Over time, this kind of behavior leaves us ungrateful and always looking to the next thing. If we are not able to reflect on one accomplishment (or failure) before moving on, it will have been a wasted feat. Racking up wins is undoubtedly positive, but along with those wins comes lessons. Taking time to soak in and understand why or how something happened gives us a blueprint for the next challenge.
Constantly looking to achieve also makes it harder to simply appreciate these accomplishments.
The goal should be to seek fulfillment over achievement. Less can be more if your actions have meaning and your goals have purpose.
Fulfillment can't be measured in numbers. Making less money and having fewer friends can absolutely equate to a happier life, so long as your personal standard for living is met and fulfilled.
The lesson is simple: the mean of society doesn’t actually represent the average standards of its people. You are your own person; follow your heart’s map and find your personal standard for happiness.