Your Own Path“My message, especially to young people is to have courage to think differently, courage to invent, to travel the unexplored path, courage to discover the impossible and to conquer the problems and succeed. These are great qualities that they must work towards. This is my message to the young people.”
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam

Are you frustrated by your life?  Have you done everything you’ve been told to do but still feel you do not make any progress?  Maybe it is because you are falling into the duplicating trap.  Many times we fall into the trap of believing that our success must be exactly like the success of someone else.  Many so-called gurus market themselves by telling others to duplicate what they did, and by doing that you will achieve success.

Following the steps that someone else has taken will only lead you to the same place the other person is.  Doing this may lead you to success; however, it will never lead you to fulfillment because it will never take you to the place you want to be.  Your success is your success and never is it just like someone else.

You are a unique individual, and therefore you have a unique path to traverse.  You can only achieve real success and satisfaction by making it on your terms.  This does not mean not learn from someone else.  This means to make sure you adapt what someone else has done, so it fits into who you are.

Signs of the duplicating trap

So how do you know if you have fallen into the duplicating trap?  Here are some signs that I found helpful for myself and found that told me I was not following my path.

  1. The shiny new thing syndrome – I realized I was jumping from guru to guru, from new product to new product, to follow their program with little or no success. My direction and focus kept changing, sometimes daily, so it kept me from making any headway down my path.
  2. The one foot in and one foot out syndrome – I found I was not feeling completely committed to any single path.  I realized I wasn’t able to move in any direction because I did not know what I truly wanted and because I kept trying to follow everyone.
  3. Mind over heart syndrome– Because I was trying to follow everyone, I was ignoring my inner voice that a direction was not in line with who I was as a person.  By doing this, I was becoming more and more frustrated with life.
  4. The not believing syndrome – Because I was frustrated, I thought that success was not meant for me.  I told myself that this was the case because this was not working out for me.

Do you find yourself doing or feeling any of these?

Solution

So what can you do about not falling into this trap?  The most important thing is to take some time to figure out who you are and what it is you want out of life.  The interesting thing is that we don’t all want the same things.  Advertisers and marketers try to make it sound that we all do, but that is not the case.  Take the time to define and be clear on exactly what success means for you.  Believe that you can achieve success on your terms.  Trust that if you follow your inner voice and apply yourself, you can get what you want in your life.  You must be able to say “NO” to what is not in line with what you want and to be able to say “YES” to what you do want.

Without being able to say “NO” to the path you don’t want, then your “YESes” will have no meaning.  You have the power to choose your success, your own who, what, where, when, and how.