Self-ownership is success

Bloganuary – Day 11 – How do you define success?

I wasn’t sure how to answer that question before the year 2015. I did most of what people would determine should lead you to success. I tried college, and even after I stopped short on college, I still pursued diplomas and certifications, and even tried college again. I owned business, I created works, I travelled, I read books, I pursued more learning.

These were all very worthwhile, because, all throughout, I learned more and more about me. It was like, gathering evidence along the way, of the things that don’t feel good, rather than moving toward what did.

I even pursued a superficial form of deep happiness – I had a beach house and lived there. Isn’t that the quintessential form of Caribbean success?

Something still felt off. All of this was not my model for success, and the thing is, I knew the things that would make me happy because I was pursuing them. However, I was pursuing them as a sort of I’ll do this, to do that, building up to the ‘it’, instead of just doing ‘it’…doing only what makes me happy.

There was something to that statement that I needed a lot of time to work through.

..makes me happy..

First, what is ‘happy’? Happy isn’t something temporal or conditional, but happy is a state of being – one where I am having a good life, one of my making..which brings me to the second part of this, ‘makes’.. I had to take responsibility for making this happy life – it wouldn’t be given to me, because how else would anyone but my self, know the kind of life that would make me happy? So, I had to work at becoming personally responsible for making this life. And last, but most important, is ‘me’. Who is the ‘me’ that needs to be made happy? Who am I? Thing is, I knew all along, but I had to develop the courage to make that person happy, the real ‘me’, not the pseudo me that I was trying to satisfy.

Digging into this question took a level of ownership, and that ownership continues to be the source of happiness. I am successful, because I own ME.

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