I‘ve been recently reading a book by Yuval Noah Harari “Sapiens“. The author states that the idea coming from the US Independece Declaratin about all people being equal is sticked in many of our minds. However he doubts, if it is objectively true or is only work of our imagination.
Now, from books to movies, I remember how I was deeply impressed by the film „Iron Lady“ about Margaret Thatcher and caught myself being assured that any goal could be achieved by hard work, ambition and responsibility. For a long time I believed that it was really so.
Then once I watched some short story on youtube about a group of people ready to run some distance. Before the start the coach asked them to answer a few questions and to make a step forward with every positive answer. The questions were like, if they lived in a full family, had a possibility to go to college, etc. After questioning group members‘ positions appeared to be different. Then again I caught myself thinking if all our achievements depend not only on our own efforts but also on other people‘s assistance.
If you take a minute and look back at your career development trying to pick out the main points / events, what would you find out? Had it happened because of your ambition and hard work or were there some others who rendered assistance to achieve your career goals? Were they your parents providing payment for your studies or your manager offering you to take a particular position or project that impacted your next career steps?
You might ask what’s the reason in doing this? Well, first of all it is worth doing at least for being thankful to those who helped you building your career.
One more thing: we are used to compare ourselves to others and, at some hard moments, might not observe the whole picture and realize that sometimes our start lines begin from different positions. Different social environments might have a lot of impact on the quality of your studies, on your abilities to make sustainable choices, etc.
One more important issue about your career and your surroundings is that you always can ask for help or support from others. Sometimes we forget about that, and then balancing of all things becomes exhausting, leading to burnouts, stress and general dissatisfaction.
Thus moving along your career path on your own might be very impressive, however it might be easier and better for your mental health to realize that ” to get by, you need little help from your friends” as the Beatles song runs. Though saying that I don’t want to devaluate the idea that your ambition, persistence, responsibility are of no difference. They are, but keep in mind all other variables, too.