Surrender to succeed

It's our ego that eggs us on to aspire. And our ego that stops us from achieving what we want

woman feeling blissful as she surrenders

The word surrender is one of the most beautiful words in the English language. But it is also one of the most difficult of deeds. I am not talking about surrender of the military kind, but a kind of personal surrender in which you simply let go. Such surrender gives rise to an experience of beautiful serenity within, something that most of us have felt at some time or the other, but can’t seem to sustain it permanently.

If surrender brings so much peace, why is it so difficult? It’s because of our ‘ego’. This tiny, three-letter word has a significant impact on the quality of our lives. Our ego wants us to be in control of everything in and around us—our relationships, our health, our careers. The ego wants things its way and when that doesn’t happen, it reacts by evoking all kinds of unhealthy emotions. I wouldn’t be off the mark if I say that our ego is at the root of all our miseries. Fear, anxiety, guilt, frustration, greed, jealousy and all other emotions that don’t feel good, are always the result of the ego’s villainous insistence on being in control.

Because of our ego, we give excessive importance to winning. Our ego-driven society offers all the glory to winners, while losers are severely criticised. What’s worse is that those who fail to win actually believe that they’ve made a big blunder by losing. To the ego, a loss is evidence of lack of total control—and the ego hates it. So, many individuals simply don’t attempt anything because they fear losing. In the process, they live ordinary lives filled with little, if any, happiness in it.

The only antidote to problems that our ego creates is surrender. Your rogue ego cannot do much when you let go of your need to be right, to win, or to succeed at any cost. It may seem paradoxical, but when you live constantly in a mindset of surrender, you start functioning more efficiently because you now live minus the constant nagging of your nasty ego to live only to win—or else suffer.

But surrender cannot be achieved using the mind. Surrendering is an act of absolute trust. You trust existence and accept the unalterable truth that life is made up of ups and downs. When you trust God, a higher power, or existence, you will suddenly find yourself to be in complete control of your own life. You will live fully, totally in the moment without worrying about being ahead, being right, winning or succeeding. It will improve your chances of success and you will find that the quality of your life has enhanced.

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Manoj Khatri
Manoj Khatri has spent the last two decades learning, teaching and writing about wellbeing and mindful living. He has contributed over 1500 articles for several newspapers and magazines including The Times of India, The Economic Times, The Statesman, Mid-Day, Bombay Times, Femina, and more. He is a counseling therapist and the author of What a thought!, a critically acclaimed best-selling book on self-transformation. An award-winning editor, Manoj runs Complete Wellbeing and believes that "peace begins with me".


  1. Hi Manoj,

    After passing 12th I was under the false impression that chalo yaar abhi education over ho gaya! Haash. In reality the lessons are always work in progress. Actually there is so much to learn and your articles are of immense help. One Mr. Charlie Munger has recommended to be learning machines. Your mag helps us in that direction. Best wishes, JM

  2. The question is what do we want in life. What is our target in life. If connecting to God is my target then as we see.

    Deuteronomy 4,29 But from thence ye will seek the LORD thy God; and thou shalt find Him, if thou search after Him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.

    Deuteronomy 6,5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

    We have to put our 100% and it starts with trusting God.


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