A Definition of Success a la Huffington

May 23, 2013



hole in one

Arianna Huffington’s commencement speech to Smith College (for women) this past weekend is something I may have been confused by when I was 22. She fleshed out and encouraged what she calls the “third women’s revolution,” with the first having been civil rights and the second equality. She describes the third revolution as a time to redefine success with the pillars of:

  • well-being
  • a sense of wonder
  • wisdom

Essentially she’s saying that people are killing themselves to climb financial and professional ladders leaving them with little happiness and diminishing health.

She charged women to “sleep your way to the top,” with the literal message of getting enough physical rest so necessary for good decision-making. Chris would love her for endorsing nap time-she says there are two nap rooms at her office. Having a work culture that supports well-being is something else she advocates.

When I was 22, graduating from college and entering the military to compete in “male” jobs with the aspirations of becoming an Admiral, commanding a fleet or someday advising the President on national security I would have been confused by Ms. Huffington’s charge. I was on my way to sleeping very little, working months on end with zero time off, eating unhealthy food that was provided BUT I had a good paycheck, I had a respectable job with room for lots of climbing. I thought these things DID define my happiness then. Totally different story now.

What made you happy 10/15/20 years ago and what makes you happy now?  Would you advise someone against working like crazy or barely working if that was what made them happy?  With children or younger people who look up to you, do you want them to experience things and figure it out or tell them how to be happy?

happy golfers