Do You Believe You Deserve Success?

Have you ever felt it was your duty to suffer because others do? I have and sometimes I still do.

Have you ever thought? – Why do I deserve to be successful when I’ve made so many mistakes, done so many stupid things, hurt so many people?

Or have you thought? – I don’t deserve success because I didn’t make the right choices when I was young.

Maybe you’ve thought – I don’t deserve success because I am real and only phonies are successful.

Maybe even – I don’t deserve success because I’ve had it too easy, I haven’t paid my dues.

But the worst thought is… Success is all luck… Being in the right place at the right time…  being born in the right family.

If you make excuses like these you fear success… you don’t want the responsibility that comes with success. That’s okay if that is what you want, but then there is no one to blame for where you are.

But if you want to be successful in spite of believing these things, Read This.


Stupid in America – an outstanding video on the nightmare of public education.


Work for what you believe in and avoid bureaucracy at all costs. From a woman who knows – she works in the public school system.


My 5-year-old said, “I have the hardest question ever. It’s even harder than, If God made the universe (he calls it the whole life) who made God?

“What?” I asked.

“If the whole life is growing, where is it growing into? What is next to the universe?”


Maybe this answers it.


The past is so strange… I’m grateful I can view a sliver of the past through pictures.

8 thoughts on “Do You Believe You Deserve Success?”

  1. The 20/20 clip was depressing to watch. Of course, the whole episode is trying to say that competition is the only way to go… that’s completely a capitalist’s point of view. I am not saying that I don’t agree, but I cannot say that it’s unbiased. It’s 20/20. They are a news magazine that wants ratings so of course they have to choose a stand. Still, you can’t deny the footages they got (of course, they only show you the more dramatic parts).

    I came to the United States when I was 16. I attened K-10 in Taiwan and then 10-12 in the U.S. (Yeah, I did 10th grade twice.) I was actually a little surprised by how much some of the kids did not know and how out-of-control some of the classmates are. It gave me a lot of chances of catching up with English, though, because the materials aren’t hard for me… I just need to make up and catch up for the language part.

    I went to that high school because it has the English as Second Language program, not because it was closest to our house. My younger sisters went to another high school that’s near our house, which is in a pretty good district. They definitely had a much better school and environment. This showed when the schools competed in quiz bowl. It was sad. Our school had negative score and couldn’t wager anything on the final question. So yeah, the school varied a lot in quality.

    The same school district/zone concept also applied to Taiwan. And people did the same thing… pretending to live in certain school districts to get into better schools. We did. It was for middle school though. In Taiwan, you have to take entrance tests to get into high schools and you have to score high to get into good high schools. So moving to a good district means more chances to get a higher score to get into better high schools. And I’m not surprised if Taiwan does better than United States at the high school level, since public education ends at 9th grade. By 10th grade, students were already filtered once, so it wouldn’t be a fair comparison. And of course our high school did well since it’s for people that had high scores.

    And yeah, I was a little surprised that in the U.S., they were teaching algebra in 9th grade, geometry in 10th grade, trignometry in 11th grade, while in Taiwan, algebra is 6th grade material, lots of geometry proofs were taught in middle school, and trignometry was also introduced in middle school. The curriculum in the U.S. just seems to move pretty slow, in comparison.

  2. Thanks for the link, Steve. I love that you linked to that video. I watched it the other day, unfortunately, it seems to be right on target.

    Kids and questions. My eight-year-old is currently wondering “what if” you stay in a dream forever and don’t wake up, and if that is what death is like, and what if the dream is a nightmare, and so on. Sometimes I wish he hadn’t inherited my imagination. Bedtime has become “metaphysical question time”. I think our kids would get along.

  3. I also think about those things. I am willing to accept certain responsibilities, but I think it’s hard to prepare ourselves to every kind of responsibility that are part of our success.

  4. Thanks for the linkage, Steve. I’m playing catchup with my email and feedreading, and it’s fascinating that you posted a link to a documentary about how bad public education is, while Rick over at Shards of Consciousness posted a video about a schoolteacher who made a major difference in someones life.

    I know I’ve beat this drum before, and I’m usually preaching to the choir… but it does all come down to individual responsibility. I can’t fix anyone, only myself. And others will only change when they want to change.

    Unfortunately, we are talking about kids who have been brought up in a culture where TMZ and the latest fashions have more importance than character and learning (oh, god, did I just say “You dern kids! 😉 ). I really feel for those teachers who go in it to make a difference and are torn apart by the system that is currently in place.

  5. Lyman,

    You are right about personal responsibility. And I have never blamed teachers or the people that try hard in the public school system. I know there are wonderful, caring, compassionate people all over the system. Thank God for them.

    I keep harping on education because it is THE one experience that shapes most of us. Most kids today will spend more time in school than with their parents. It is also THE one experience that we can and should change. In order for me to change… I must be free to choose… where my kids go to school is one of those choices. Minnesota spends over $14,000 per student per year in their system. That money would put my kids through private montessori school for 2 years! I happen to do well enough to put my kids in a better school, but many can’t and what is happening to them is awful. If we are to improve as a society and as people we need freedom of choice. I am very passionate about this. It is much easier to change yourself when the gun is removed from your head. All people should be free to choose non-government schooling. We need more choices – non-government choices. We owe it to our kids.

  6. Steve, I wasn’t trying to say that you were blaming the good ones out there. It was just an interesting coincidence that I saw both of the posts back to back.

    You are right… it’s something that can change, but not until the majority out there want it to change and do something to make it change. From what I’ve seen, many parents consider their kids schools to be little more than glorified day-care centers.

    Of course, this is coming from someone who was something of a “back up” when it came to his stepchild’s upbringing. Final decisions always went to the mom and dad, who had a great relationship in spite of (or maybe because of). Now that kid is kicking butt in college, and I’d like to think it had something to do with the three of us, as well as the teachers.

    Thanks for all of the food for thought, Steve.

  7. Lyman,

    Thanks. I try not to blame anyone at all.

    I spent a lot of years blaming, justifying my crappy behavior, and complaining. And I believe an once of prevention is worth a pound of cure. I am the way I am because of my choices. The good and the bad. No one to blame.

    But I do know these crazy ideas we have come from somewhere. We weren’t born with them. We learn them in our childhood and carry them into adulthood, where we live with them or start de-programming ourselves.

    I say ‘what if’ we could prevent these limiting beliefs from being formed in young minds? I believe we are born free and we learn to limit our own potential because we aren’t taught the fundamentals. Imagine the potential.

    When I saw the way they teach (or should I say – allow them to grow organically) at the school my son is attending, I fought back the tears. So did Christine. It is SOOO different than my memories. It’s way different than the local public school. I may become a zealot. I’m getting there.

    To me this isn’t about blame or finger pointing. It is about driving change. Pushing relentlessly forward. Saying we can be better… far better… but to get better we have to admit the need to change. And there is a lot of resistance to it.

    When people say people with views like mine want to destroy public education… they are right… I want to remove it and replace it with something 100 times better.

    It is intellectually lazy to say we can’t create a far better system that allows parents a wide range of choices. It is part of the future I visualize daily. My picture gets clearer everyday.

    Thanks Lyman… I love your site and your honesty.

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