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October 6, 2011

The Meaning of Success

I hadn't planned to blog about this today...but sometimes circumstances arise, events happen, and my thought process is jarred.

Steve Jobs passed away yesterday.

I sit here typing on a Toshiba laptop, my [drug dealer-esque prepaid] cell phone buried somewhere at the bottom of my diaper bag. And as fate would have it, I just made a public admission on Wednesday afternoon to never having owned an iPod.

Although I'm not an Apple techie myself, I still have a profound respect for Steve Jobs as an amazing visionary.

I saw a quote last night from Steve Jobs that made me stop and think...

"We all die. The goal isn't to live forever, the goal is to create something that will."

Certainly the technology created under Jobs' leadership is revolutionary. I'm sure it will morph a million times over, even within our lifetimes, but his legacy will likely live for many, many generations to come.

That Jobs quote reminded me of one of my favorite quotes, from Ralph Waldo Emerson, on the meaning of success...

"To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."

Chances are I won't invent any revolutionary technology. And try as I may, I most likely won't go down in the history books as the world's greatest marketer of socks, underwear, packaged meat, or any category of consumables, for that matter.

But what I can do is give 100% of myself to my life. I can follow my passions. I can invest in my family and in those around me.

I believe I can make the world a little bit better...and I hope to instill that belief in my girls, too.

...and acting upon that belief will be to have succeeded.


Dolli-Mama said...

This is beautiful. I LOVE the new design. It looks fabulous!

Just Another Mom of Twins said...

That is a great attitude to have and something great to live by!


Marcia (123 blog) said...

I think this may be my favourite post of yours ever!

I just love everything about it and that is one of my favourite quotes ever - I had done it in Word years ago for the front cover on a notebook.

Maybe I should try jazz it up for "subway art" :)

Deanna said...

Love this post, Mandy! Steve Jobs is definitely an inspiring person...for the things he did, and also his attitude about it all. It's hard to gauge just how much impact he had on our lives. You might not be typing on an Apple product, but he definitely influenced the technology we are ALL using now.

I think it's all about deciding what you want to do, and doing it passionately. : )

Olusola said...

Beautifully said. I admire Steve Jobs and his generation of techies because they really did change the world

I think that as mothers, our kids are our most monumental legacy. That's why every good thing we teach them to do is so important

I'm loving the new look

Barbara Manatee said...

wow! I had to take a double take when I got here! Like the fun new look!!

Great post though. I don't have anything "apple" either but know his ideas and technology totally influenced much of what we use today. I love the quote you had.