Modern man is conditioned to expect instant gratification but any success or triumph realized quickly, with only marginal effort is necessarily shallow. Meaningful achievement takes time, hard work, persistence, patience, proper intent and constant self-awareness. The path to such success is punctuated by failure, consolidation and renewed effort. It is wet with the tears of emotional breakdown. Personal reconstruction is art. Discovering one’s self, one’s talent and ambition and learning how to express it is a creative process so may not be rushed. What’s the hurry?”
This is by far one of my favorite quotes.
The brutal truth of any matter, however, is that if you haven’t yet gotten the results you want out of any area of your life, you haven’t struggled long enough. You haven’t grown enough. And that’s a process most of us want to rush. In fact, sometimes we’d rather it was just handed to us.
But if it was handed to us, our triumph would be empty, and our victories shallow. We have to struggle. There is meaning in struggle. Never forget that.
I’m reminded of that as I work to build my blog. The posts go up slow, it takes hours to write them. Hours more to edit them and get them online with as few errors as possible.
But as I work on building the kind of lifestyle I’ve been dreaming about, It reminds me that this isn’t supposed to be a quick and easy process. Writing a blog, editing posts, saving money, and preparing to travel the world consume large amounts of time and effort.
After damn near 150 hours of work, I’ve only got ten posts up. But then I remember what I’m doing. Not only am I building something valuable for myself and others, I’m learning what it means to create and write for a successful blog. And eventually that will be something I can re-create in as many different forms and fashions as I want. But I have to pay the price in effort first. (And so do you.)
Why You Don’t Want it Handed to You
But, let’s just pretend I suddenly inherit tons of cash and I decided to go out and buy a blog that already has a tremendous amount of traffic. I start posting, things are going well, people are listening, and I’m even making some money.
Then, all of the sudden Google changes it’s page ranking strategy, or my server dies, and my traffic dries up. Now I have a serious problem. My website has died, and I have no idea how to bring the readers back because I never took the time to learn how to build traffic, backup my data, or write compelling and valuable content. My victory was shallow and ultimately meaningless. And now my impact on the world is nonexistent.
By Struggling, You Ensure Your Future Results Are Positive
By working hard at something, making mistakes, and blundering forward, you guarantee (assuming you don’t quit) that your results will be more or less, permanent. (In a relative sense. Nothing lasts forever.) The lessons you learn will be put into practice immediately, and if the chips on the board change, you can adjust your game on the fly.
No one can take away what you build because you’ve put in the time it took to learn how to build it. And, if it disappears, you can simply build it again. And the second time, you’ll do it twice as fast because you already have the tools and knowledge.
Imagine you achieved an Olympic level of athletic ability. Perhaps you’re a downhill skier.
Let’s imagine that you suddenly you have a catastrophic accident, and you can no longer ski. But you’re resolved to return to your passion, so you slowly begin to recover and ski again.
You get better, you improve. It’s hard work, and it hurts, but you’re making it. And I bet in less time than it took you to learn to ski at an elite level in the first place, you will have managed to become competitive again. And that victory is not shallow, it is ripe with the sense of self worth and accomplishment that you deserve – that you’ve earned.
What Are You Trying to Accomplish?
What is it that you’re trying to do in life? Are you willing to put in the effort? Are you willing to spend months, years, even decades of grit and determination to get yourself there?
It doesn’t matter if you’re building a blog, traveling the world, raising a child, or working towards a promotion. Perseverance is king. You will either arrive at your destination with the knowledge acquired from pain and struggle, or you will quit and never realize your dream.
Don’t quit. Struggle.