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Pursuing Failure - Success is Imaginary

Alex Chaveriat
Alex Chaveriat
Success is an imaginary concept
Walking out of GrrCon with a Black Badge I felt far less accomplished and successful than coming back from DEF CON with video. It took me the weekend to figure out why I had this backward response and ultimately conclude that “success” doesn’t exist - we just make it up.
At DEF CON I had a plan… well a semblance of a plan with goals and success criteria. At GrrCon, I had no plan or goals.
I had 12% of a plan - Guardians of the Galaxy
I had 12% of a plan - Guardians of the Galaxy
What do goals have to do with it?
There are a few things I realized that feel life-changing and they center on the concept of “success” and how we just make it up. Another black badge was not my goal whereas videos at DEF CON were.
Success is completely arbitrary. We are the ones that set the goals for ourselves. Typically we are jerks to ourselves and constantly change the criteria and the focus between relationships, business, money, knowledge, etc. Success is self-defined and self-invented.
We can call ourselves successful anytime since we control the goals. Though psychologists tend to say it is not that easy as we set success criteria to some deep-seated need, like “success” for us could be to make more money since we were poor as a child or because that is how our parents measure success.
If we can overcome that feeling and recognize it, we can set goals for ourselves that every professional in self-help suggests. Goals not based on accomplishments/milestones but values. Since affirming values that we hold dear can bring happiness and if not happiness, better mental health.
While I still need constant reminders, I am trying to move from arbitrary goals and focus on values and a good perspective - honesty, integrity, being fully engaged when I set my mind to a task rather than specific milestones.
Assess your values and hack on,
Silk
😌 My Quote of the Week
“Journey before destination”
– Brandon Sanderson (The Way of Kings)
🤘 My Favorite Things This Week
GrrCon Black Badge - I won a Black Badge at GrrCon for solving all the crypto challenges, especially #4. EggDropX awarded it for solving all of them and not claiming any of the codes.
Recognized out in the wild - This happened again at GrrCon. Being recognized out in public for my YouTube channel is one of the coolest feelings. I am amazed every time it happens and it brings a huge smile to my face.
🚽 Things That Are Gross
Thumbnail Designer had a fire - If you notice a few months ago my thumbnails started massively improving. While I would love to take credit, the truth is, I started outsourcing thumbnail design. The artist had a fire at his home that destroyed his computer. However, he is now back in action.
🎥 YouTube Videos This Week
My last newsletter had an odd effect this week as I got to use it at GrrCon to talk about creativity. I ended up using parts in this week’s video about being creative as an adult.
Creativity as an Adult | Vlog [GrrCon]
Creativity as an Adult | Vlog [GrrCon]
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Alex Chaveriat
Alex Chaveriat @alexchaveriat

Hey-o, I'm Alex, or Silk among the hacking community. I'm a hacker, information security geek, father, coffee snob, YouTuber, Chief Innovation Officer, DEF CON goon, and I pursue failure. Failing often and failing better each time. Every week I write about that pursuit, stories, and what I am learning on the journey. Hope you enjoy and hack on.

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