What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.
Henry David Thoreau
Our dreams are our raison d’être; they are the ones that keep us motivated. They can both force a person to go to bed early at night, or reduce their sleeping hours to a bare minimum. Our goals are the reason why we put in the hard yards; they are what motivate us to outdo others and even ourselves. However, often times, it is our character that gets degraded in the rat race to outdo each other.
It is fairly common to come across people who would not mind throwing someone under the bus to fulfill their goals. Ethics and morality often go out of the window in such cases, and everything becomes ‘justifiable’ in the name of being competitive and playing it hard.
Nothing, however, could be further from the truth. No goal, no objective is worth the effort if it does not make us a better person – or if it involves trampling over someone else to reach the pinnacle of success. After all, what good is an accomplishment that comes at the cost of our values?
That said, this must not be looked at as some sort of an excuse to not push hard enough. There is nothing wrong with being competitive. In fact, it tends to bring out the best in some people, and there is nothing wrong with this. So long as your dreams do not force you to compromise on your character, they are absolutely worth the pain.
As for goals that require you to put your integrity at stake, you need to ask yourself the question if that is something you really want to pursue. The following quote by the celebrated American poet and philosopher, Henry David Thoreau, is quite pertinent here: “What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”