People judging your 'success'
Nothing gets under my skin like other people judging my level of success. I think it's because I take pride in my achievements, and used to enjoy gaining other people's approval. These days, my successes aren't quite obvious enough to gain adoration and applause from the plebs. Which doesn't bother me most of the time, I don't require constant approval from others. Least of all, people I hardly know. I find the biggest judges of your success are the outer circle of friends, or ex-colleagues, or acquaintances. These are the people who relish any opportunity to put themselves above you. Not all of them, but you can see the smug smile they give when they think that they're more successful than you.
And I say fuck 'em. Fuck that. The most miserable sods are the ones who delight in pointing out the failures or lack of apparent success in others. The idea that success could mean the same thing to every person is absurd, and we need to stop thinking that way. Some people measure success by how much money they earn, or by the status their job brings them. Other people measure success with marriage and children. Some people measure success by how hot they are, or how fit they are. Success can be measured with happiness, or how many overseas trips you go on each year. Whatever it means to you, try not to impose that on others. Because it sucks. I was recently asked why I left my high-flying corporate life in advertising to then work as a gallery attendant at ACMI. Seriously? I was almost gobsmacked that someone would ask me that. And it wasn't in a nice way, it was in a why-would-you-go-backwards-in-life way. Feathers ruffled, I politely explained that I was not fulfilling my creative needs working in advertising, and it was draining my soul out through my eye sockets. And destroying my happiness. So I left to focus more on my art, and needed a casual job to pay the bills. The person I explained this to really didn't get it. Because for them, having a well-off corporate job must be more important than their own happiness. And here we were, judging each other as fools because our values lay in different realms. Granted, anyone who places money or status above their own happiness is pretty much lumped in the defective pile for me. Perhaps I need to judge less harshly also. Even though I would never openly criticise someone's success (or lack there of) which has so commonly happened to myself. So, screw you people who have judged me for working jobs that were deemed unsuccessful to you. Or for thinking you're better than me simply because you're married, or own a house, or are more fit, or beautiful, or have a higher paying job. We all have our own successes that we should be proud of.