Does Success Make You Sick?

Achievements should make us glad and proud. Often they have the opposite effect.

10/22/2021 2:16:00 AM

These distorted thoughts can get in the way of people embracing opportunities and celebrating their achievements. Do any of them ring a bell?

Achievements should make us glad and proud. Often they have the opposite effect.

Do any of these distortions ring a bell?You don't deserve success because you're stupid, ugly, evil, weak, or otherwise inferior.Success is— and you're a lazy slacker and/or shameless cheat.Whatever victory seems yours, you stole or obtained by mistake.

You're an imposter, faking everything. Sooner or later, everyone will know.Life is innately tragic and ironic. All joy must be followed — and punished — by pain.Your success means that others lost. How dare you celebrate?You won not outright, on your merits, but because grifters are using you as their dupe in some scam.

Successful people are all narcissists.Who do you think you are?The more you gain, the more you stand to lose.Seeking material success is avarice, one of the Seven Deadly Sins.Success attracts, and the successful are constantly, mercilessly, watched, and judged.

Friends will abandon you because you've changed, leaving you in the hands of pretenders and shallow fans.You're just a big fish in a small, insignificant, pitiful-in-the-real-world pond.Success is fleeting, false, and ultimately meaningless.You have other responsibilities. You're needed elsewhere.

It'slonelyat the top. Prepare for misery. The only way to go from there is down.Reading these statements in this depersonalized way, listed like items in a textbook rather than inherent truths, weakens their grip.We must ask: What inspired those who terrorized us into hating or fearing our potential? What inspired them to cancel us before we could begin? Some of them envied us. Some aimed to shield us from defeat. Some had been traumatized by their failures. Some believed they spoke for higher powers. Some despised us. And yes, some of their assertions contain micrograins of truth. Life

canbe sad. But mainly, these were wielded not as simple well-meant warnings but as weapons used against us: knives and landmines wrapped in lies. Read more: Psychology Today »

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