Who is more successful?

Last month I was in India for my sister’s wedding. I went to my school to invite my teachers with my friend. My teachers were happy to see me and the way I have grown. There was a sense of achievement in their eyes while talking to me and they were really happy about it. So, my principal showed me around and also asked me to advise my juniors.

I wasn’t prepared for it and just started blabbering anything that came to my mind. I went to some classrooms with my “advise” to the students but my principal did not ask my other friend to share some thing with them. I really felt awkward as I was the successful one among me and my friend with respect to my principal. After all blabbering, I started looking for the answer, who was more successful among me and my friend?

Just for the introduction, my friend still stays in Latur and is managing his family business and property while I studied and I am sitting in America working as a Tech Engineer. I studied engineering, worked for a while in India and then moved to America for my further studies. After finishing my studies, I took up a job as a Business Analyst with a Bio-tech Firm in America. While my friend stayed back in Latur, finished his graduate degree in commerce and started looking after the Family business.  Now among two of us, who is more successful?

As per the masses, I am more successful because I studied a lot and I am sitting in America while he is still back in India. But according to me, my friend is more successful than me. I have my reasons to believe this and defend it. Some of the reasons are as follows

According to me, I just studied books, gave exams and after this took over a job. According to me, I never got a chance to show my true talent. In my studies, I just showed that I can think well to fetch good marks and a degree but I never got a chance to show my true self. For me the world is just my company where I work. On the other side, my friend is in an environment where he is showing his true talent (practical knowledge) every day. He knows how to survive in this world. He knows what actually the true world is! He is the Morpheus while I am still plugged in the system. (Matrix Terminology)

If you take away my degree and my marks from me, I have nothing to offer. May be my work experience will be helpful for some other company in the same domain but that is not helpful for me. While on my friend’s end, even if you take away his degree and marks from him, he has a lot of things to offer. All that experience can be helpful to any company and also can be helpful to him. I do not exist without my marks and degree.

For me, the world is what I read in books and newspaper but my friend actually interacts with the world everyday.  Just having good degree and good marks doesn’t make anyone successful. It’s the attitude and approach towards life that really matters. Knowledge really helps but education doesn’t. There is big difference between being knowledgeable and being educated. In my case, my friend is knowledgeable while I am just highly educated.