Fulfillment as a Multi-Variate Function

Kyle Tymo
Kyle Tymo
Nov 20, 2018 · 2 min read

Just tonight a friend of mine posted to LinkedIn asking about sources of fulfillment.

I immediately drafted a response, only to find that my thoughts did not fit within the character limit for a comment.

As such, here they are:


I’ve thought about this a lot as of late. Happy to throw in my $0.02:

I believe fulfillment to be an effect born from more powerful causes.

Chuang-Tzu’s statement of “Happiness is the absence of striving for happiness” rings true as it is very difficult to sit in a chair and actively strive to be fulfilled. It is a outcome derived, not pursued.

Instead, I believe pursuing endeavours that extend beyond ourselves is a righteous and ultimately fulfilling path. Most religions point towards loving our neighbours, and on a micro-scale, my anecdotal evidence guides me to believe service-oriented people/careers (teachers, firefighters) derive more fulfillment than ego-centric people/careers (financial services, sales).

I’d write fulfillment as a function of cultivating low expectations (the diminishing of ego), working in service for others, a thankfulness for our limitless blessings, and striving to bring change despite an impermanent life.

Or if shown through through the words of those wiser than I:

“Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.”
— Epictetus
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
— Mahatma Gandhi
“Find something more important than you are, and dedicate your life to it.”
— Dan Dennett
“Gratitude is not only the greatest of the virtues, but the parent of all of the others.”
— Cicero
“That it will never come again, is what makes life so sweet.”
— Emily Dickinson

And most cogently:

f (fulfillment) = [expectation, service, gratitude, appreciation of time&death]

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