How do I stop condemning myself for repeatedly committing unsuccessful acts?
To condemn oneself for not being successful, is to judge oneself. The very concept of success is usually warped. Most often, when things go ‘our’ way, we assume that we have been successful. However, ‘our‘ way may not always be the right way, and may lead to problems that we haven’t foreseen. So the determination of whether or not we are successful is questionable. The need to keep trying till ‘success‘ is achieved is inculcated in our psyche as something to be lauded and admired. This tenacity may sometimes help to achieve what we desire, but failure often causes stress and leaves us wide open to frustration and disappointment. The exercise of seeking to place the blame on someone or circumstances is often followed by a feeling of regret. Recriminations such as ‘if only’, ’had I not’, and similar phrases simply feed the feeling of frustration.
The reality of the situation and it’s acceptance is portrayed in the following proverb:
‘If one man calls you a donkey, pay him no mind. If two men call you a donkey, get yourself a saddle; you may be one.’
The realization that our way may not be the correct way, is the first step to having faith in the wisdom of the Universe. When we go to a restaurant, we do not call the chef and give him our recipe. We leave it to him, because he is the expert. Who then is the expert in running our lives? We ourselves, or the Universe?
We are always trying to be in control. In reality, there is nothing we can control. We cannot even control the hair on our head. When it falls, we cannot say to it: ‘You are my hair; go back into my scalp.’ This does not mean that we should be fatalistic. We should give everything our best effort but have no expectation in the result. Our attitude should be: If it doesn’t happen, it is not meant to happen. There must be another way, another option; find that option. We should not allow frustration to get the better of us.
Obsession with success causes untold stress and robs us of the very happiness we seek through success. True success is not measured by marks scored in an examination or income earned. True success is the positive impact you have on others.