Survey: Everything You Know about Ambition Is Wrong
Work hard. Be ambitious. Don’t take “no” for an answer. The early bird gets the worm. Never back down. Kill or be killed. It’s nothing personal, just business. Always Be Closing. Money, money, money. We’ve heard it all before. In this land of opportunity we put successful people on a pedestal, and all strive to be like them.
Capitalism is in our DNA. It’s all about the business of getting ahead, of pushing profits and the quality of life further and faster than the competition. The problem is, however, that people define “quality of life” in many different ways, depending on their values and perspective on life. What some see as “winning” (thank you Charlie Sheen) others view as the pursuit of the trivial, superficial or meaningless. The trick is to figure out who you are.
This article explains, “How do you define success? That's the question at the core of an exhaustive research project by Timothy Judge, a professor of management at the University of Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business. ‘Despite their many accomplishments, ambitious people are only slightly happier than their less-ambitious counterparts, and they actually live somewhat shorter lives,’ says Judge.”
Ambition comes with its innate stresses, and perhaps this is why ambitious people don’t live as long as their less ambitious peers. But happiness is all about being who you are in life, and for some people that means wearing flip-flops instead of Italian business shoes and camping in the mountains instead of spending their weekends in corner offices. We all need money, of course, but it turns out the different people need different amounts of it to be happy. Who knew? People who live long lives, that’s who.
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