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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Does somebody’s achievements hurt you or encourage you?

By: Lindokuhle Mnisi

What happens when the people around you succeed in life? When your peers achieve something that you haven’t achieved and when they acquire things you wish to acquire? What happens when your close friends get paying jobs, buy cars and start living a lavish lifestyle? What happens when they build or buy beautiful houses for themselves and their families? How does seeing your neighbour achieve so much makes you feel? What happens when your little brother or sister starts a successful business and move forth in life while you are still hustling and struggling?

What should that do to you? How should you respond to all that? Should it hurt you? Should it break you apart and make you feel stupid, useless and helpless? Should somebody else’s achievements depress you? Is this the time when you start seeing how people are so “full of themselves” and how “they think they are better than others”? When people get successful in life, is it the right moment to start noticing how they hate you and how “they hate helping other people”? Is this the time when you develop jealousy in your heart? Or is this the time when you get encouraged and challenged to work harder than you were already doing?

Seeing other people succeed in life is naturally painful. Yes it. It puts a lot of pressure on every individual. It has the potential to create anger within ourselves. Seeing some people succeed in life gives us stress. But it differs from one person to another on what kind of stress does it cause. Is it a negative stress (distress) or a positive stress (eustress)? It also differs from person to person on how they deal with the stress.

Some people break down, cry and suffer depression. Some see a need to stand up for their lives and do more. Some people get anxious and give up on everything they were doing and start thinking they are not meant to succeed. While some people take it as a challenge to stay on track in pursuit of their goals, dreams, success and happiness.

Problems begin when you start "noticing' how somebody thinks "the is too big for his own shoes since he bought a car". Trouble starts when you begin to say "after getting that job, he now thinks he is better than all of us" and "Since he started appearing on TV and talking on Radio, he thinks he is the man."

In most cases, it is not because successful people brag or shove it on everybody's throat that they achieved something, but it is the pressure and stress it puts to those who haven't achieved something. Jealousy begins when we fail to deal with the realization that somebody close to us has achieved something that we haven't achieved.

Clapping hands for somebody forever can be frustrating. But if you take motivation from how they do things, you have the potential to make many people clap hands for you. 

Seeing somebody succeed in life should motivate you. It should stimulate you and give you strength. It should get you thinking hard about what are you doing wrong that they are doing right. It should challenge you to introspect and evaluate yourself to find solutions for your own problems. Somebody’s success should keep you on your toes. It should sharpen your concentration and make you pay attention to little details that you usually take for granted. It should drive you to where you want to be or to where you want to get. Seeing somebody succeed should encourage and challenge you to think about what is possible for you. However, somebody’s success should never put unnecessary pressure on you.

Seeing somebody move forth in life has the power to put us under so much stress. How we choose to deal with the pressure we incur is fundamental to our way forward. Hence if seeing somebody succeeds in life hurts you, you might start being negative about and towards people who succeed. Somebody's achievements should motivate you to work hard.

I believe everybody is destined for greatness. Every one of us has the potential to succeed in life. The pace of your success may not be the same as that of your friend or colleague, but everything has its own time. When your friend's time arrives, it doesn't mean because you share the same age, it should automatically be yourself. Your day will come. Maybe not today, tomorrow or next month but your day will come. But, one great speaker said "if you give up now, no day in the future is going to be your day."

So does somebody’s achievements hurt you or encourage you?