ENG 1101, 9:00 a.m. 21205
March 13, 2015
Have you ever met someone who is categorized among our society as being successful? They seem to be so confident and elated all of the time. They represent what the majority of people in our culture are striving to be. They have it all. The looks, the college degree, the career, the friends, the money, everything that one dreams of their entire life. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines success as the fact of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame (Merriam-Webster). It is the American dream, an enormous home, a luxurious car, and financial freedom. For some, it includes even more material possessions such as a yacht, a second home near the slopes, or even a condo in the tropics. However, not everyone defines success this way. Some, like myself, believe that success has nothing to do with material items or superficial happiness. Mainstream marketing and social media combined have successfully convinced us as a society into accepting this fabricated definition of success. The businesses and the media need us to believe that having lots of money is the key to happiness, therefore the key to success. This perception of success is only a myth in my opinion. My definition of true success is acquiring happiness and a purpose in life through respectable accomplishments and experiences. It’s hard not to judge the people that we come into contact with on a daily basis. We try to determine our own personal definition of success and how the people we look up to attained that ultimate goal. Becoming successful in life allows us to feel a sense of comfort and stability. However, this glorified idea that money is a direct factor in our success is what is setting our society astray from the true meaning. Racking up $100,000+ student loans for a college degree, finding a high-paying career, owning your own home, having extravagant cars, and feeling a sense of financial freedom is what we are taught, as young adults, is the step-by-step guide to becoming successful and fitting in. However I do not believe that one can be truly happy if their only goal in life is attain money. If we live to conquer as much money as possible while were alive and then we just die, then what was the point? Many people go through their entire life trying to reach a monetary meaning of success and by the time they retire the only honest characteristic they achieve is regret. Regret is under no circumstances a synonym of success, no matter what your definition is. A successful life cannot be attained when the only goal is money. Even though money can make someone feel more comfortable and as if life is easier, one needs to remember that there is a lot more than superficial amenities to living a prosperous and stable life. Money can make life easier, sure, but it does not necessarily make it better. For example, money cannot buy the knowledge and wisdom that comes with a lifetime of hard honest work and dedication. Money cannot buy us happiness and it cannot assist in acquiring some of the vital characteristics that can be attained through a truly successful and prosperous life. Throughout our young adult life we struggle to try and find what we want to be when we grow up. A career is a lifetime commitment and choosing the right path is crucial. Not only does a career define a person, it also comes with a paycheck, which directly factors into our social status. It is a common misconception that the bigger the paycheck, the better off one is in life. I believe that amongst society today, far too many people are unhappy with their profession. Many students in today’s society graduate college deep in debt. They’ve racked up quite a bit in student loans and are more willing to take a job that is extraneous to their major if they can get a higher pay or if they can’t find a job in their field. It is more likely that they will end up in a career that has nothing to do with...
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