The Success Trap
Everything I’ve learned about the REAL view from the top
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I have spent a great deal of time reading recently. Some of you will know that’s down to a bout of bad health that has meant I’ve had to slow things down a bit. The upshot is that I’ve been able to carve out a little time to reacquaint myself with old books and introduce myself to new ones.
One of those new books is The Success Myth, a brilliant and insightful book by the British writer, Emma Gannon that came out last week. It’s one of those books I found myself vigorously nodding along to whilst wishing I had had the balls to write such a thing myself. (Though truth be told, it is a far more elegiac and nuanced book in the hands of someone like Gannon, who I have always found to be one of our most interesting young writers here in the UK).
The book is, I suppose, a reexamination of success. It looks at what it has cost us (our health, our friends, our sanity, in some instances) as well as the way forward.
Reading the book aged 44, has been quite the eye opener for me, namely because I am at the tail end of a generation who was reared on the Having It All myth. I rallied very hard against this when I edited Cosmo (the original editor of which came up with that deadliest of phrases) since my own understanding of that term, was that it was it’s own complicated trap.
Success is a fickle friend. Anyone who has ever experienced it will know this. Success is cruel and capricious. It is an unquenchable thirst that can never be sated. And yet..we carry on in search of it regardless.
And so I wanted to share with you some of the myths I have learned along the way.