In a beautiful talk given by Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of the popular book ‘Eat, Pray and Love’, the importance of doing something which you deeply love is emphasized. And the fact that success and failure, are shockingly similar in many ways. Elizabeth was a dining waitress initially. She loved writing but for many years the only thing she faced was loads and loads of rejection and couldn’t get her work published. She repeatedly failed but persisted. Then came her breakthrough success, ’Eat, Pray and Love’. The book achieved staggering success and was also adapted as a movie also. Gilbert shares that after the colossal success of the book, she was fearful for her next book because it would most probably let her fans down. The lovers of the book would be disappointed because her second book won’t be the same as ’Eat, Pray and Love’. She was again uncomfortable when she achieved blinding fame and glory. And she was obviously restless when she was failing. So what is the catch? Why are we not at peace in these two completely contrasting situations out of which one is deemed absolutely amazing and the other one absolutely horrible?
The answer is interesting. Our brain is subjected to strange stuff in both the situations. It cannot intelligently discern the difference between the two like the world does, labelling one as pathetic and other as fabulous. What the brain knows that it has been flung away from its natural habitat and is uncomfortable in the new situation. Basically it is faced by utter disappointment in one case and total pleasure in other. What is common in both situations is that in both of them we are not sound and in both the cases present situations in which we may get lost; either because of crippling sorrow or because of blind intoxication of happiness and pride. So what is the home to which we need to return as soon as possible when we get thrown away in one of these two scenarios? Well that home is our work, where we are most comfortable, the thing we love the most, our passion. And we need to reach there and hold on to that place tight and return there back as soon as possible so that we are not hurt by the outcomes. As Gilbert recalls, her second book bombed, but she wasn’t shattered, because she found her way back to writing and felt safe there. Your home might be anything, reading, dancing, studying, your job, sports etcetera, you just need to keep doing that stuff, which you love and you will be safe from all the blows and pain which the consequences can give you. Because you are truly at peace when you are doing what you love the most, and that peace can’t be obtained by either success or failure.