Succeeding First…

I felt like sharing some thoughts about success and one’s journey in life…so here it goes…

Many of the people around me, especially from the civil society entourage, have that savior complex, or the martyr complex for the sake of human kind, world peace, environment, human rights, justice…etc but I believe they are forgetting one basic thing before getting to all that….and its succeeding first.

I mean succeeding in one’s life, whether academic, career-wise, family, social life..etc before being able to save the world or save anyone or anything for that matter. If one cant stand on his own feet, he wont be of much help to anyone…because he’ll probably be unstable and dependent on others and thus will in turn need someone to support and “save” them beforehand.

Yes I feel I have that moral obligation towards my community and my environment to assist it, to serve, to change things in a positive way….but I don’t put that before my own self…

Perhaps some people share that moral obligation, others simply work for the community or environment to enrich their resume, others for the financial income they might get…but never the less…its counter productive for anyone to start dreaming of saving anything in this world before having his/her feet strongly rooted in the ground or else the sheer weight of the responsibility will throw him/her off balance….crumbling under the endless initiatives/program/project/campaigns needed to achieve any tangible change…any sustainable endeavors.

So take this simple advice from a simple person…succeed first and then do your best to save the world….

A tree to grow successfully needs strong earthed roots…


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6 thoughts on “Succeeding First…

  1. Beautifully written!

    I like how you highlight a concept many often overlook – We think that what it takes is a strong will, money maybe, the right supporters and the leader in us… to name a few but you made me realzie how often we decide to go to battle without the right gear and emotional/mental/academic protection on.

    I think the tree picture summarizes your thoughts beautifully!

  2. I just feel that I can really associate myself with this piece..This piece explains why unconsciously, I started gradually to stay away from Aie Serve…Seeing close people to me suffering from cancer made me needing the energy to serve these close people to me, before serving the community.. Their suffering and torture made in need of help, hope, and motivation..So, if I lack these basic elements, I do not think I can give them to others…So, inchallah one day when they get better, and so I get my energy back, I will get back to my community the way it deserves

  3. Hey,
    Well I am in the field of Civil Society and yes I have the savior complex … but I decide what is Success …. Success is something I place ahead of me and try to reach it. As far as I am working toward my plan and things are working yet there will be always ups and downs … Yes I am Succeeding in what am doing even with My Complex!
    Success for me now is finish my current project … continue my academics and the cycle will rotate again … with a new project to reach a new Success .
    Afif it is just a status of mind set, when you work in the corporate world and you gather some experience and then you go to the civil society work purely you will know the difference and you will live up to a complex if that what you think it is.

  4. I think there’s something logical in saying the one must be able to hold one self before seeking to hold others and let others lay on them. But there’s something more continous, more complex, less defined in talking about self-development and success vs. helping others. They are not necessarily two separate entities. Personally, most of my personal development occured when I was helping others and serving the community in one way or other. My colleague, he’s an expert in conflict resolution, is going to work in the palestinian camps soon and he said to me today: “I’m not sure yet what exactly I’m going to do there, perhaps play sports, music, dance, or maybe they’ll teach me a dance, but whatever it is, I’m sure they’ll be teaching me and giving me much more than I will be able to offer them.” It’s a give and take process. We learn and change by interaction. There is no point where you can say, ok so now I’m successful, now I can go serve the community. Success is when you are learning while serving, growing while giving. I say: Grow and let grow.

    all my love!

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