5 Things we can learn from the Lion King Pt-3 : The purpose of life is to find a purpose in life.


Here we go again for another chapter in this series that we started a few weeks ago.

I trust, or should I say hope, that you have enjoyed what we have covered so far from the adventurous story of Simba.

As usual, I will start with a flashback.


In the previous chapter entitled “Your comfort zone is your enemy”, we have discussed how Simba’s biggest enemy wasn’t his uncle Scar but his own comfort zone.
Nothing else kept him away from the throne. Nothing prevented him from claiming what was rightfully his. Nothing else kept him living according to the “Hakunah Matata, it means no worry” cloud of illusion. His enemy, the comfort zone was more dangerous, vicious and efficient than Scar.


The Purpose of Life

Philosophers, writers, musicians and other artists have wondered about and discussed the purpose of life in the variety of their crafts.
You have perhaps also wondered about the purpose of life. Another word for that is “meaning of life”.

I distinctly remember the phase of my youth where I asked myself a lot of existential questions. Why did I have to be born? What is the point of existing. What is the meaning of life.
These are deep questions that each one of us, I can now assuredly affirm, have asked ourselves.

Having exposed Simba’s comfort zone as his most threatening enemy, I feel obligated to assess why Simba was OK to be comfortable.

simba hammock

The Hakuna matata lifestyle seems like an awesome philosophy at first. It’s a propaganda. A falsehood that we can go through life with no worries once the past is behind us.
It entices us to believe that it takes strength to put the past behind us. Perhaps it does, but it takes greater strength to face it.

The Hakunah matata lifestyle can only go for so long. At some point, Simba had to”wake up and smell the coffee”.
Simba was comfortable because he did not have a purpose. All that mattered to him was to roam about life and have as much as fun as possible as long as the memories of the past were constantly blown away by the turbulent winds of entertainment.

An imitation of happiness is a clear limitation of happiness. JP

Anybody who acts, lives in a pretence of happiness is living a life with self-imposed limits.
Substituting true happiness with a smiley face is the saddest reality.
Those who  build walls of appearances to come across as strong are actually weaker than those who publicly tear because, in the words of Victor Frankl ,” tears bear witness that a man has the greatest of courage, the courage to suffer.”
It’s better to have the courage of suffering than the cowardliness of false happiness.

This is the reason why Simba was stuck in his comfort zone. He thought he was happy. He felt like a new world opened up to him and certainly a new world of illusion and la la land opened to him. He was without purpose.

And there was Nala…

Nala reminded Simba of his purpose. He was meant to be King. No matter how many miles away he ran from his past, he was bound to face it.
She wanted to do something about her reality. Not run away from it but face it. She ran to find help and she help she found indeed, disguised in the skin of a coward Lion, who by the appearance had every kingly attributes but with the feeble character of the lowest in food chain.
The encounter with Nala got Simba thinking. Is she right? Can I go back? I can’t go back.

Only at this point did he start questioning the comfort zone.
We need such people as Nala, or circumstances and events that will shake us up a little bit and cause us to reflect on where we stand in the race of life.
At that point, we question everything. The foundations upon which we have built a wall of insecurities, the truthiness of our belief systems, the possibility of a different outcome; Everything that can be shaken is shaken. In moments like these we start thinking about the purpose of life.

The Purpose in Life

If Simba’s encounter with Nala dealt a great blow and fissured the walls of Simba’s comfort zone, his encounter with Mufasa certainly caused every brick to shutter.
This encounter was not about the past. This encounter was not about things that He could not change. This encounter was not about his mistakes. This encounter was about his purpose in life.

The purpose of life is to find our purpose in life.
Simba’s purpose was now plain and clear.
Finding his purpose had an effect on him. It compelled him to come out of the comfort zone. It gave him a new breath and inspired him to become, in the words of Nala “The king I see inside”.



We often stay in our comfort zone because we lack a purpose. Once we understand that the purpose of life is for us to find our purpose in life, and once we have indeed found that purpose that Simon Sinek calls “our Why”, we can no longer enjoy the coziness of the comfort zone. We begin to hear a voice : the voice of the stretch zone where grows takes place.

In you find yourself stuck in your comfort zone, fearful to try anything that is estranged to you, seek deep inside for your purpose.
Living to fulfil your purpose is the greatest inner strength there his. Even the steel of the comfort zone melts before the flames of determination. The fire of a purpose sets everything ablaze.

I conclude this third part with this wonderfully inspired quote:

Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life; to life he can only respond by being responsible.
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

5 Things we can learn from the Lion King pt-2 : Your comfort zone is your enemy

I hope you enjoyed part 1 : Your past is past.


In the first part of this series, we discussed how our past is past and we are each and every one of us, called to face it. In the words of Timon “you have to put your past behind you”.

We discussed that putting our past behind was not to ignore it but to face it and stand tall before it and say : you have no power over me.
We cannot and should not forget our past. Whether good or bad, it is a part of the storytelling of our lives and I don’t know about you but on the planet where I live, there are some stories that end with “living happily ever after” but I don’t any story that is void of negative experiences such as pain or hurt.
it’s part of life, embrace it.

The past can be painful but we have to overcome it and deny to past events, the power to impact, alter and shape current and future events.


Do not underestimate the destructive power of the past. Events that have occurred 10 years ago can have such a stronghold on a person today and paralyze their chances of any success in the future, making them victims of something immaterial and intangible. It’s very crucial to overcome it to live a successful life.

Let’s get back to the second thing we want to discuss today: your comfort zone is your enemy.

In the tale of the Lion King, I think both the reader and the writer agree that Simba’s enemy is the evil dark maned uncle Scar, whose name might suggest that he never healed from the scars of his past…
Scar is responsible for Mufasa’s death, betraying the innocent trust of his nephew, making his way to the throne and treating Simba’s family with very little dignitiy.
There is no doubt that if Simba has one enemy, you would concur with me that Scar would be his name. And perhaps you are right.

What if I told you that there is another enemy, far more dangerous than scar? An enemy that pretends to be a friend and a safety zone but silently sucks the life out of you and ensures that you never become anything more than the shadow of what you are meant to be. It paralyzes your potential and prevents you from truly becoming who you ought to be. This enemy is your comfort zone.

Scar never stopped Simba from fighting for the throne.
Scar never told simba that life was good and void of worries.
Scar never told simba he could never become King.
Scar never stopped Simba from going back to Pride Rock.
Who did? Simba’s comfort zone, an enemy far more dangerous than Scar.

By, embracing the Hakuna Matata philosophy, Simba got comfortable in a life that meant “no worries, for the rest of his days. A problem-free, philosophy” which is an utopia, for we know that real life does not resemble nor adhere to this philosophy.


The comfort zone is so comfortable, to state the obvious. It is a place where we do not have to face our fears, our past, and for that matter we gamble on the future. We love this place. To the musician it is the key he’s comfortable with. To the baby, it is the warm bosom of mother. It is the security of the nest to the bird and to the traveler, it is the relaxing feeling of watching the sunset from a hammock,

There are lots of problems in this comfort zone. I have identified two major issues and I believe all others can be categorized in either one.

The unknown

Simba, no doubt, had a lot of questions. Was his mom alive? What had become of Nala? Has Scar turned Pride Rock into a dictatorship regime? Will he ever become king? Did Zazu get married (ok not that far).
All these questions can be answered. Simba knows what it would take to get the answers : leave the comfort zone.
As long as we stay in the comfort zone, we will  bathe in a sea of questions and live under clouds of uncertainty. We will never know what we can achieve, we will never have answers to a lot of questions, we will deprive ourselves from exceptionally rewarding experiences.

The only thing that is certain about the comfort zone is uncertainty. -JP

The little chick living in the shell of an egg knows nothing about the world outside. All he knows is his comfort zone, surrounded by familiar barriers that limit his horizon and sight. If he stays in his shell, he will never experience the sun, never bond with his siblings and family, never experience dust on his feet, or the texture and taste of a worm.
By staying in the comfort zone, we are making a very dumbfounding statement : This is all I ever want to know and experience in life. 
I hope you can see the fatality of this.

Mother nature will not allow the chick to stay in its shell, neither should you allow yourself to stay there. This should be enough to make one realize that staying in the comfort zone is unnatural. That’s why there is no growth there, which brings us to our second problem.

Zero Growth

Not growing is an unnatural phenomena just as unnatural as staying in the comfort zone, as previous stated.
In Simba, there was potential to be a father. There was potential to be King of Pride rock. There was potential to grow in wisdom by experiencing things in life. There was potential to be courageous, overcome fear. There was potential to conquer evil, lead and unite the people.
All this potential laid dormant within him.
The comfort zone has the smooth voice of a mother singing a bed time lullaby to a restless baby until it sinks in the deepest sleep. The comfort zone sings to us and makes sure the potential within us remains dormant, prisoner of a false perception of security and peace.

I say false indeed because the irony is that the comfort zone is created out of fear.

In each one of us there is potential to become. This potential can only be realized by leaving the comfort zone and getting into our stretch zone, also known as the optimal performance zone.
By stretching, we grow stronger and become more flexible.
We experience new things, we learn how to cope with them, we ultimately grow and the potential that was once within, very soon begins to outwardly show.

To conclude on this second part of this series, I invite you meditate on this quote :

Complacency is the enemy of progress. – Dave Stutman

If you enjoyed this, please share.

you can also find this series in a storytelling format on Medium.

Inspired to become

As I read stories of entrepreneurs whose startups were acquired by a fortune 500 company and made for themselves a profitable exit, I often pondered ” How did they do it”?

I browsed websites, blogs, forums to read and learn from people desiring what I desired : success.
The most striking finding of my search were not the answers provided, but the questions asked. There seemed to be a theme with questions such as : What company should I start? What’s the easiest business to start? What will the social network of the future look like? How do I Invest $1000.

I had asked myself the same or similar questions : what app should I build? What product should I create? What must I do to be successful?
In the consumer-digital age we live in, it was my impression that the key to success was to find the next “what”.

Then I discovered a secret. This secret is not hidden but overlooked. It is not complex but overwhelmingly simple. It has no apparent beauty but yet the concept is so enriching.
It’s not a vastly popular shared secret but it is vastly responsible for every success story you have ever read.

The secret is the following quote:



I realized that I have been asking myself the wrong question. It’s not really about “what” I must do, but “who” I must become.

A simple metaphor to illustrate this is that of caterpillar’s transformation into a butterfly.

A caterpillar could spend hours asking itself the following questions : “What must I do to fly? What app can I build? What business can I start so I can fly?”.
These questions are ridiculous, I agree, but bear with me and let’s focus on the point I am trying to make.

You are the caterpillar, flying is your objective. It is what your version of “success” is. It’s unique to you. I might be a net worth of a million dollar for one, or go through chemotherapy for another.
All the questions that the caterpillar is asking are good questions and they are even relevant.
He can go to a seminary and learn the “7 habits of successful butterflies”. That will not help.
He can decide to take a course in Biology or Physics to gather as much as knowledge as needed to understand the science behind flying.
He can sit for hours listening to a motivational speaker and learn positive thinking, meditation and be electrified. I doubt that that would help him fly.
Further, he can go to a management seminar and learn goal setting and planning,
All of these things are good, and I would encourage the caterpillar to learn them but none of them will help him fly.
There is one and one thing alone that can make him fly and that is to become a butterfly.

The right question to ask is : “Who must I become in order to fly”.

Now, the caterpillar can only become a butterfly. It cannot become an eagle or a hawk. But it grows and develops until it reaches it’s potential.

I have drown so much strength in realizing this and it has completely changed my life and inspired those around me.
We tend to focus a lot of what to do, what business to start, what is the next big think. We ask ourselves what can I do, how do I become a millionaire by thirty.
I have nothing against “what-to” and “how-to” questions. I have asked myself the same questions and always will. They provide useful insights.

But here’s the thing. If I told you 15 years ago to build a social media app like Facebook before it was invented, and you had all the technical ability to do so but you were the type of person that never finishes what he started, what good would that have done you to know what to do?
You would start and would never finish and therefore never succeed even with the right idea and the right market conditions. I would venture and say even with the right amount of investment, you would still fail  because of a fundamental character flaw.
See? Knowing what and how is not enough.

the real question is “who must I become”? In other words “what kind of person do I need to be”

Becoming has become my theme in the past 5 months. It has never departed my lips nor my heart. As I have continued to share this and inspire people around me, I was encouraged to put it in a book.
As I gathered a lot of my thoughts in my Evernote app, I had a lot of material that I thought would be helpful and maybe be fit for a book “Inspired to become”? Time will tell.

For now, I hope every article posted in this blog will help you become the person you need to become to achieve your own success.