“YES! That’s it!” Wayne exclaimed loudly sitting back in his seat as onlookers glanced in his direction. “The stinkin’ ego,” he smiled. “The one thing that is missing from the definition of success is the attainment of self-acceptance, peace with oneself and the world. Or, shall I say enlightenment. There is absolutely no mention of that in the definition of success!”
Wayne continued, “My realization was that despite all of my striving and apparent success I was really dying inside. I did not have any sense of peace with myself and sure as heck not with the world. I had very little semblance of self-acceptance, so there was no way I could honor anyone else’s success considering I was unable to accept it within myself. Sounds like a pity party, but this was my revelation. I mean Albert Einstein even said, ‘Fuck success!’” Wayne paused.
“Okay Wayne. Now you are being ridiculous,” she interjected out of embarrassment because Wayne wouldn’t stop saying the f-word.
“Really, you think I am being ridiculous?” he smiled.
“Well, did he really say that?” she smiled back, pressing Wayne for proof.
“Of course not!” He laughed. “At least not in so many words,” he said with a sly grin. "Although, I believe his words can easily be interpreted as such.”
“Okay. What are you referring to now?” she asked while taking a sip of her Matcha Green Tea Latte. Wayne kept her intrigued while at the same time frustrating her because she wasn’t quite sure where this was leading.
“Do you remember reading the headlines regarding a note written by Albert Einstein nearly a century ago that recently sold at an auction?”
“Uh yeah, I vaguely recall,” she continued. “Wasn’t it a note that Albert Einstein wrote to a bellhop or courier or someone like that?”
“Yes! That’s the one,” Wayne replied.“It was 1922. Albert Einstein was on a speaking tour in Tokyo when a courier delivered a message to him at the Imperial Hotel. When Einstein realized that he didn’t have enough change to tip the messenger he scribbled down some life tips, instead.”
“His words of wisdom, or advice, written in German on Imperial Hotel Tokyo stationary were as follows, ‘A quiet and modest life brings more joy than a pursuit of success bound with constant unrest.’ He also wrote down the following, ‘Where there’s a will, there’s a way.’”
“Nearly a century later in two-thousand-seventeen that note sold for over one and a half million dollars!! Listen to his words, ‘A quiet and modest life brings more joy than a pursuit of success bound with constant unrest.’”
“Okay. That makes sense Wayne. But, I am not sure what you are getting at.”
“In essence what Albert Einstein was saying in his million dollar eloquence, genius and proper manner was, ‘Fuck success!’” Wayne smiled, taking a sip of his coffee. “A quiet and modest life brings more joy! Rather than a pursuit of success bound with constant unrest or shall we say stress, anxiety, anger, dis-ease, sickness, sleepless nights. Should I go on?”
“Uh, no need,” she conceded. “Although it is a little brash, I am impressed and can appreciate what you are saying.”
“The definition of success is flawed because there is absolutely no mention of happiness or heightened awareness, but rather it is based on the ego’s priority which is the attainment of materialistic things, basically greed. So, how is it possible that there is no mention of mindset in the definition of success?” Wayne enthusiastically and passionately asked.
“Uh, I don’t kno…”
Wayne continued his diatribe before his friend could answer, “What about considering success as the attainment of a positive, loving and abundant mindset? Why isn’t success defined as the attainment of a life fulfilled and embracing a deep love of everyone and everything? Why is the attainment of a heightened awareness or enlightened way of living absent from the definition of success?”
“Well, I really don…”
Wayne interjected once again before Betsie could answer, “Another aspect to the ‘fuck success’ theme revolves around all of the assholes who are successful. In particular, the jerks who stepped on people and over people to get ahead. Who wants to be known for that type of success? I’d rather be happy!”
She smiled, sat back in her seat and took a sip of her tea without reply. She realized Wayne was on a roll and there was no stopping him.
“You know, Siri’s initial definition of success sadly is an accurate depiction how most people live their lives and careers; ‘victory applied to warfare, and denotes success achieved in personal combat.’ Seriously? Warfare and combat. Are people commuting to war and combat every day of their lives?”
“Sometimes it feels like it,” Betsie quickly interjected. “This is a valid question to pose. I am not sure everyone feels that way, but I have to say you have my attention despite the harshness of it.”
Wayne smiled. “Yep, I get it.”
“What I hear you saying is the idea of success feeds the ego and does not speak to the overarching aspect that gives life true meaning, which is love.”
“Exactly! I believe that the leaders and managers at these companies cannot find it within themselves to lead with love while still being considered successful by the modern day definition of success,” he pleaded.
“It certainly is possible, but it has proven a difficult task to accomplish in this modern era,” she agreed. “Very few people have attained this type of success. Although there are those exceptional few who have while embracing the ability to love their people. Richard Branson comes to mind, as does Ray Dalio, Jim Rohn, Zig Ziglar, John Maxwell, Tami Simon, Louise Hay and Marianne Williamson. I am curious to know why you are going down this rabbit hole of success.”
“Because I am tired of working for an employer whose approach is to focus on what’s wrong!” He expressed his frustration. “They spend all of their energy focusing on what everyone is doing wrong, even reprimanding employees for speaking up and sharing their thoughts and opinions. If this is the way a company manages and leads, then I don’t want what they are selling.”
‘Recognizing the shared nature of my thoughts, I am determined to see. I would look upon the witnesses that show me the thinking of the world has been changed. I would behold the proof that what has been done through me has enabled love to replace fear, laughter to replace tears, and abundance to replace loss.’ (A Course in Miracles, Foundation for Inner Peace, 2007 ACIM, W-54.5:2-4)
After two decades in the financial services industry, Wayne Renroc, worked his way up through the ranks into a leadership position at Pigeon Financial until he walked away from it all! Wayne had grown tired of the toxicity in the workplace. A self-serving, inept, and mindless leadership team at Pigeon Financial destroyed employee morale and fostered a growing dysfunction among peers which fueled his desire to move on.
Managing with an iron fist in a self-serving, egotistical, and mindless approach to the workplace their toxic ways spread like a cancer. Like the disease, these tyrants are so stupid and self-centered, they will not only destroy the morale of their teams (healthy cells) but will ultimately destroy themselves and the entire organization (the host/body).
This is a compelling glimpse into the corporate world bringing to the surface growing disconnects and dysfunction in the workplace. Assholes to Angels calls out the tyrants who remain in positions of leadership.
The many parallels between behaviors on the playground during our childhood and behaviors in the boardroom during our adult years are brought to the surface. Readers will learn a new definition of success based on the words of Albert Einstein from a century ago. Finally, readers will discover a way to see the angel deep within each of us.
Assholes to Angles was written to honor and celebrate the true leaders who have left the working world a better place. Instead of stepping on and over people to get ahead, true leaders show people how to stand on the shoulders of giants to succeed.
About the Author
Inspirational author T. E. Corner is still on a journey to uncover life’s mysteries and the underlying reason why true happiness, and satisfaction with life seems to elude most people.
His latest story, Assholes to Angels, chronicles the experiences of a twenty year career in the financial services industry.
His work and writing approach has been strongly influenced by the likes of Steve Jobs, Seth Godin and Malcolm Gladwell. His desire for a better workplace has been strongly influenced by the likes of Ray Dalio, Simon Sinek and Zig Ziglar.
Assholes to Angels is T.E. Corner’s sixth book in as many years. He is coming into his own as an expert on mindset in life and career. He has been a featured speaker on numerous radio shows and podcasts nationwide.