“What are your achievements in life? Things that you can be proud of?” he asked
“There are many,” he replied with a proud look on his face. “They may not be the kind of achievements you are expecting, but I consider them much more important than the things people normally consider to be achievements.”
“What do you mean?” he asked, interested.
“Well, I have not been on Deans’ lists, or achieved outstanding grades, or made a lot of money, or been a part of high profile projects, or have people in high places as friends or had articles published in famous journals etc.”
“Hm! Then what are your achievements?” he asked, bemused at this silly attempt at justifying the apparently complete lack of success in this person’s life.
“I’ll name a few. I have achieved a certain state of mind. I can
1. Get up every morning at the exact time that I want to wake up on, without the least bit of lethargy or a bad mood or a desire to stay in bed a little bit longer.
2. Use my brain to control all kinds of emotions including love, hate, anger, sadness, happiness, envy and ambition.
3. Listen to anything I have to listen to without feeling annoyed, bored or irritated.
4. Meet and interact with people without judging them. I can differentiate between people and their actions and judge the action without judging the person.
5. Take all kind of criticism with an open mind, picking up the points that can help me improve and ignoring the nonsense.
6. Admit my mistakes without believing that it makes me a lesser person.
7. Have confidence and faith in myself and whatever I do without being too arrogant and stubborn to think that I always do the right thing and cannot be wrong.
8. Accept people who have diametrically opposite views to mine, and am ready to logically analyze which of us is wrong where.
9. See the world and everything in it as a dynamic entity where everything is changing all the time and any effort to cling on to a thing and resist change could lead to disaster.
10.Give due importance to everything including money, profits, career, family, health, knowledge, emotions etc. while taking care to avoid giving too much or too little importance to any of them.”
He finished and looked at the older man confidently. There was no sign of nervousness, anxiety, arrogance or pretentiousness about him.
The older man thought for a moment, then said.