I recently read an article on a Westin Hotel website titled “Ask The Hard Questions” which, of course, immediately got my attention being that Questions are my life’s work. The article was originally posted by Mark Manson from his blog and titled “The Most Important Question of Your Life“.
It’s a very intriguing post and Mark makes some excellent points, namely that asking “What do you want out of life” is the wrong question to ask. His point is that what we want often isn’t enough for us to get it.
He goes on to point out correctly that wanting something or fantasizing about something or dreaming about something isn’t going to get you what you want.
The challenge I have with this post is that he focuses on the “pain” of getting what you want. At one point he suggests that in order to be successful you must be willing and able to sustain pain.
It’s not that he’s wrong in his point, I just believe there are better ways to focus on it. Happiness, success, love, whatever the goal, these things don’t just happen. They take work, they take effort and time and sometimes yes, that effort and time can be painful. But it’s not about enjoying the pain, it’s finding the end goal that you are willing to struggle for, to work for, to endure challenges for.
You cannot succeed if you focus on the pain and as Mark points out you cannot succeed if all you do is ‘want’. You have to be willing to do the work. So the question, I believe, is not so much about what pain are you willing and able to sustain, but what Dream are you willing and able to do the work to achieve.
In any case, it’s a great reminder that what we want is possible, as long as it’s what we truly want.