I speak often about how one of my driving values is that I want others to be happy and successful. That’s still true, but I’m starting to think that I’ve left that value incomplete.
Happiness (however you define it) and success (in achieving your definition) are very good. But I want more. I want sustainable happiness and success. Not just “sustainable” meaning “long-lasting for myself,” but in the sense of being self-sustaining, repeating and continuing far after I’ve put it in motion, and far after I can no longer put direct effort into it.
I want to do more than help create happy and successful people. I want to create happy and successful heroes, those who can then do the same for others.
My children’s happiness, joy, fulfillment, success, and love mean the world to me. I would sacrifice anything for it, and I work very hard towards it. But if all I do is create an engine where I can input my own effort for the output of their happiness, I’ve failed. Because that engine will one day grind to a halt, ideally many, many years before the end of their lives.
They need to be not only self-sustaining, but they need the ability to do that for the people they care about, in turn.
Along the way, I would love to take those lessons, those skills, and apply them to anyone who’s interested. My children are the motivation and in many ways the proving ground for everything I do, but there are tons of positive externalities to my efforts to become a better parent. Many of which I hope will benefit you, my reader, my friend.
To that end, let me impart what I believe to be the foundational lesson of this endeavor: Creating happiness in others creates happiness in yourself. If you help others find true, deep fulfillment – even if your contribution is minor – you will increase such things in yourself. It’s almost impossible not to. So if I encourage you to make others happy, that will make you happy, and thus I will be happy because I helped make you so.
That’s the sustainable hero cycle. Let’s do that, just as much as we absolutely can.