Achieving Fulfillment – The Chicken or the Egg

In a hasty pursuit, the inevitable goal we all seem to want to achieve is fulfillment.

The traditional wisdom in the ethos goes something like this:

  • Step 1 – If we work hard and do the best we can we will experience life to its fullest and obtain happiness and joy.
  • Step 2 – Once you achieve happiness and joy, it will pave the way for you to experience the ultimate feeling of fulfillment.

I can recall vividly when these ideas finally gave way to a new perspective.

The Chicken and the Egg
Hilton Queenstown Resort & Spa



The image above was my first attempt at a long exposure back in 2016.  Looking out to Lake Wakatipu in Queenstown, New Zealand, this photo represents the exact moments in my life where I experienced a very profound breakthrough.

I began to back-track into this mindset in a very simple way – that I had not done before.  I asked myself a very simple question.  This question was the root of many things for me at this point in my life, as it was precisely 7 months from when I would publish my first book Logicrats: A New Paradigm.

When do people do their best and most meaningful work?

The answer to this question for me was: when we are in full awareness and focus.

And it was at this moment, it *clicked.

I was immediately brought to the two scenarios in which we seem to have full awareness and focus:

  • When we are under stress, we tend to have keen focus and awareness.  The reasoning behind this seems obvious enough.  It is innate and closely linked to our survival instinct.  It is the nature of our lizard brain.  No wonder we often churn out the best work under pressure…
  • When we are in a state of happiness.  This brought me back to a Ted Talk by Shawn Achor which I stumbled upon years earlier titled: The Happy Secret To Better Work; in which the study and case is made that Happiness Makes Your Brain Work Better.

So if stress and joy are the two states in which we are able to elicit full awareness and focus, this implies we must already be in a state of stress or joy to fully experience life.

The feeling of fulfillment presents itself not when through life we seek to experience joy but perhaps when through joy we seek to experience life. – Ramneek M

This brought the sensation I was feeling full circle on that balcony terrace overlooking the nightly sky at Lake Wakatipu.  At this worldly setting, in the presence of family and friends, it was not joy I was feeling; it was ‘the full presence of mind’. 

I was fully experiencing my life.  This was fulfillment.

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