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I Can’t Succeed in Morocco: Dispelling the Myth

Casablanca – Innumerable are the reasons why success appears unattainable for many Moroccans. Most of these reasons are myths, and the belief that living in Morocco makes success impossible tops the list of myths

“I live in Morocco. I can’t succeed!”—many Moroccans believe that their country is somehow antagonistic to success. One would easily draw the link between such attitude towards national identity and the reason why we still hear of clandestine Moroccan immigrants found dead somewhere on the coasts of Spain.

Some Moroccans call that L’Hriig (clandestine immigration), others refer to it as “the quest for opportunity” –an appellation loaded with fantasy and an innocent desire for accomplishment, elsewhere. This fantasy starts with a conviction that success is a myth in Morocco, evolves into a long-term project, and culminates, mostly, with either trauma or a tragedy.

Why do some Moroccans mythologize success? Is being Moroccan or living in Morocco a crucial variable that could account for a Moroccan’s lack of opportunity and self-worth? Is success only accomplishable outside Morocco, or thanks to a double nationality? Is there an impediment to success that only our clandestine immigrants can perceive?

My Theory of Success: nothing to do with being Moroccan!       

Is one born an artist? No. We’re rather born with the seeds of exceptionality, of excellence and unprecedented ingeniousness, but only few of us feel the need or have the desire to water those seeds to make them germinate, grow and flourish.

Do you get the metaphor? I believe success is innate, and so is failure. Just as we’re all born with a langue acquisition device (LAD) that enables us to acquire our first language regardless of our race, gender or origins, we are born with a “success attainment device” (SAD) as well, which enables us to attain success regardless of our disparities.

However, just as the LAD necessitates exposure to linguistic stimulus, along with other criteria, for a successful language acquisition, the SAD requires that a number of criteria be met for one to attain a particular form of success, successfully.

Expose Yourself to Motivation…Plenty of it! 

Who is the more likely to succeed: (1) a person who’s incessantly reminded of his inabilities, constraints and don’t-haves, or (2) a person who is constantly reminded of how illegible he or she is to succeed?

The reason why some Moroccans believe that success is unattainable in Morocco is—doubtlessly among other reasons—the fact that they are constantly exposed to the discourse of failure: accounts of unsuccessful businesses, manifestations of poverty and the rise in joblessness rate, the inability of degrees, certificates and trainings to make a difference, and so forth and so on. 

Bear in mind: one doesn’t necessarily need ‘the other’ to feel eligible to succeed. Our dependence on others to rewards us, to praise our work, to encourage us, to remind us that we have the ingredients of success is what makes success appear more of a mirage to us, the more we approach it, the farther it steers away from us.

Our success is our own responsibility, and so is our failure. We can be our own suppliers of motivation and encouragement, and our success will consequently be tastier, for we, and only we, would have drained ourselves to plant its seeds,  monitor its growth, and then deservedly relish its fruits. 

Know Yourself First…

The reason why some Moroccans believe success is unattainable in Morocco is mostly that the success they are seeking is simply not made for them— or simply not their thing! We can’t all sing, rise to fame and have faithful fans asking for our autographs at the entrance of a five-star hotel.

We are born with similar SADs, but not all of them serve for the same end. We all acquire the same language, but we don’t use it the same way. That makes our idiosyncrasy, exceptionality and weirdness. Hence, none all of us should aspire for the successes attained by others, unless we understand ourselves, for us to avoid taking not only the wrong path to success, but also aiming at the wrong type success.

Knowing yourself is understanding your needs, your skills, your qualities, your acquired knowledge, your dreams, aspirations and fears, as well as your weaknesses, your bad habits and your defects. Believe it or not, all of these elements are variables that determine what type(s) of success(es) is (are) attainable for you, and which ones are not.

The reason why some Moroccans lose faith in the achievability of success in Morocco and decide to immigrate illegally elsewhere is because they see success from the lenses of others who made it outside Morocco, but with different investments.

By no means am I trying to say that all Moroccans need to seek success only in Morocco. Surely, some Moroccans, the case of brilliant students or artists, can have their skills and talents polished more efficiently abroad. Morocco, hopefully, will one day acquire the means needed to make going abroad seem unnecessary. However, many Moroccans can reach the summit of their potential by investing their skills and knowledge, regardless of their scope or significance, in Morocco.

Many Moroccans achieved success in Morocco before moving abroad to expand and polish their skills and expertise in a myriad of fields. Success, in this sense, is bound neither to Morocco nor aboard. Success is encapsulated in us, rather than an entity that exists independent of us and necessitates a quest for us to lay our hands on it.

Success is willingness-bound. The stronger your willingness, the more chances you score to attain success, but only the one that best fits your ambitions and abilities. Further, self-knowledge and self-motivation are both ingredients and criteria for attaining success. Being Moroccan, Muslim, black or a woman are not impediments to success.

Success can start in Morocco, then flourish elsewhere, but only to return to its roots, where it has a worthwhile raison d’être, where it is more needed. 

Edited by Elisabeth Myers

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