Success does go to your head!

Success does go to your head! Change NOW!

I often hear from my friends or acquaintances that they knew someone who “used to be” a really nice person but that seems changed now.

He or she was very hardworking, compassionate, thoughtful, lot concerned about others and blessed with a good sense of humor but they don’t see that person anymore. Shortly after being promoted to a higher position, making great deal of money, acquiring a big house or a fancy car, or being successful at something, the person is now a complete jerk. He’s changed!! He is now become to self-centered, overwhelmed, egocentric, greedy, hard to please, and demanding.

This is an alarming trend taking place. People who have had some degree of good fortune and success seem to lose their humility and turn arrogant. Is this happening because of the success going too much to their head? Success is addictive but it also seems destructive.

The unfortunate part is that this change in a person’s life happens due to many reasons. Firstly no one really wants to be around someone who is arrogant and self-centered. It’s rather boring and it’s quite annoying!

Arrogance does imply lack of gratitude or magnanimity. The assumption is, “I am self-made person; I did all of this by myself; It’s all about me and my efforts; no one was around to help me.”

What about the factors such as fortuitous timing, good luck, family support, breaks and so on which are forgotten or disregarded.

I have worked with many such people who were terribly self-obsessed and I remember them not for their success stories but just to remind myself of how I should not let success go to my head.

I think when you allow success to get to your head you actually increase your stress, and the quality of your life disappears. You become more irritating, more demanding, less tolerant and there is a sign of lack of empathy. People will stop liking you and with time you’ll stop liking yourself too.

It is really sad that someone finally gets what he or she has always wanted – success, to be rich, to be famous – yet now he is rarely satisfied. There is this feeling of being discontented and disconnected all the time. In fact one tends to become more paranoid or difficult in the process of enjoying this success.

Such people feel constantly being let down and nothing seems to be good enough anymore. Their house starts getting smaller for them, the car they use needs to be fancier, the temper fuse is shortened, perspective is lost, greed sets in, and more is always better.

People who used to love to be around him can’t stand him anymore. Moreover, people even start to hope that his good fortune fails. Friendships fail. Obsessive busyness and a lack of time take over. Someone who was so easy to be with and to satisfy is now impossible to comprehend.

I was once sitting with my very close relative in his office. A man who used to be perfectly comfortable in all situations. He became so hysterical and vocal complaining to his secretary that the temperature in the office wasn’t cool enough!  God is he the same man I knew so well!!

I’ve met many business people, celebrities, social workers, and many more from various walks of life who have done really well – their talent, timing, hard work, luck, and all the rest of it kicked in at just the right time. And good for them.

Yet, rather than being grateful and keeping a sense of perspective, they act as life is not fair, or as if they are somehow better than others or more important than others simply because they are good at something and have enjoyed more success. It’s exactly the opposite of the way it should be!!

It’s amazing to see around successful people complain constantly about life around them, about services they avail, about many small issues. They are rude with almost anyone.

The question is, “why would anyone want to be like that?”

What I am saying is that whether you have made your fortune or you are still working on it, try to see the stupidity or foolishness and humor behind letting any success go to your head. Even if you have slipped in that direction, it’s never too late to change.

You can have it all at the same time – tremendous success, richness, good fortune, and a lifetime of abundance – and still be caring, thoughtful, considerate, kind and generous person.

This way you will be not just successful and famous but you will be happier too!!

With grace & peace,

Vickram Aadityaa

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