Success lies in the middle, but not where you think?

Is success really about trying to stay somewhere in the middle of two opposing points of view? Must we believe in one side or the other? Must we follow one side or the other? This article explains a different way of looking at things.


On the road of success, there are many heartaches, struggles and a lot of confusion. How can I be the most successful? How should I be? How should I approach things? What should I do?

I’m going to provide you with a radical, counter-cultural idea today:

Success lies in the middle, but not where you think.

We often hear people talk about balance in all things. That we must know one to know the other. We must know the bad in order to know the good. We can’t sit too much on one side nor on the other. For example, we can’t work all the time and we can’t rest all of the time. This is indeed all true and it is important. It is not, however, all.

I’m going to suggest that success exists in holding opposite and opposing beliefs, at the same time. 

Success lies in the understanding, acceptance, awareness and practice of holding duality. Holding a space of coexisting duality in opposing views.  An imperative and essential part of this is to be actively engaged in the present moment. It’s only in that time and space that we can exist in both realms. It takes conscious and continuous effort.

Let me give you some examples to explain this better.

Be free-spirited but not reckless. Be responsible, deliberate and disciplined in the pursuit of your ambitions. Follow your heart. Do what you feel called to do. Make plans, create steps, follow your steps. Be responsible and disciplined by diligently pursuing what it is you want. Be deliberate about what your free-spirit calls you to do.

Be passionate about the pursuit of your ambitions but be indifferent to the outcome. Pour your heart, time, energy and passion into what it is you feel called to do. But don’t set your mind and hopes onto a particular outcome. Things may not manifest themselves in the way you think they will. What you want today may not be what you want tomorrow.  What you think is right for you, may not be what is right for you. You may not even know what is best. It’s ok to be passionate but don’t form defined expectations. Want not for the sake of wanting but for the sake of doing.

Accept and hold responsibility for your actions but exempt and free yourself of any guilt. Forgive yourself. This is a tough one. Be accountable, but only in a constructive way. Use that accountability to instigate change, positive sweeping change. Be humble, apologize and try to make right any wrongs.  Don’t guilt yourself, reprimand or berate yourself. Forgive yourself. Give yourself grace. Always strive for betterment and self-improvement. Accept yourself as you are but grow from your mistakes.

Trust in yourself and what you do, but be open to change. The things you so firmly believe in today could and may change radically. Be prepared to be wrong while still remaining confident. You have to trust yourself in the moment but also be prepared to be completely wrong at the same time. You must always remain flexible, receptive to new ideas, perspectives, and beliefs. It doesn’t mean you have to be unsure of yourself, just don’t be so hard headed that you can’t change your mind.

Love people. Give them understanding, space and time but hold boundaries at the same time. Hold yourself in a sacred protected space while being open.  Issue people forgiveness and grace while standing firm. You may be wrong or you may be right, but is it necessary to be either. A little diplomacy goes a long way. You never know where someone is coming from or what their perspective may be. Don’t forget to also love yourself!

What are your thoughts on this? Do you agree that we are most successful when we embrace both sides? Do you believe that we need to exist in a state of duality?