One of my most vivid memories of preparing to leave for Peace Corps was when our trainers asked us to open up our handbooks and write down our definitions of success as Peace Corps Volunteers. I think we were given 5 to 10 minutes. I thought to myself then that I wanted more time. I wrote for as long as they let me and I have continued to write for two years. I still want more time.
I think that is the single most important question any Peace Corps Volunteer can ask themselves. What is success? What is happiness? How will you know you are successful? Everyone, likely with their best intentions, will tell you their answer. Friends. Family. Fellow Volunteers. Peace Corps Staff. Even dead people will tell you. Thoreau. Spiritual Icons. World Leaders. Irrelevant. Your own definition takes time, your heart, your service, and whole your life to write.