In these times of financial and political turmoil, we have more questions than answers. What is success? How to find fulfillment? Many ask. Is money really the biggest factor in finding fulfillment? How is it possible for those with minimal material assets to be happier than the rich? Can you use spiritual solutions to solve material problems? ...questions, questions and more questions.
We all work hard to put aside savings. When we lose financial sustainability, we often question our success. That is because we generally measure success by our bank balance, our job title, the car we drive and the restaurants we frequent. All of these may be fleeting, through no fault of our own. So, is quality of life always dependent on financial success? No.
Fulfillment goes beyond accumulating wealth or status. It includes enjoying what you have—good health, friends, inner peace and spiritual development—all the while using your talents to contribute to the society. I call this spiritual sustainability.
Failure of success
Material success is important but it may not be permanent. Despite the sweetness of success, material comfort and financial security have their limitations. n fact, one of the downsides of success—without the spiritual element that brings fulfillment—is stress, which can compromise good health and/or cause strained relationships. Etched in my memory are my meetings with an extremely wealthy businessman who was confined to his bed for years after a paralysing stroke, no longer able to enjoy his millions. He exemplified the failure of success—ill health that prevented him from sharing the wisdom he had acquired as a leader in several industries. For others, the stress of success leads to breakdowns in their relationships, resulting in loneliness.
Today, professionals whose careers are being sidetracked by down sizing and entrepreneurs whose ventures are losing money, ask me, how they can find a purpose in life. Whether they feel a deep inner void, or have the desire to rebuild a more permanent kind of sustainability, many are experiencing an impetus to make positive changes in their lives, in a way that will ultimately benefit others. Spiritual sustainability, not money in the bank, brings permanent solutions to personal and global problems. After all, the Soul does not get affected by the stock market movements or media headlines.
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