Hello followers. We are back! This 3 parts series examines the definition of success and what it means for Millennials and for people working in the 2010’s of all ages. There is something for everyone to learn here.
2. The Struggle for Success
The analysts and the experts were always right about one thing: success is a struggle. Success is not easy. Success takes time. The cliches are very true here.
Rome was not built in a day
Nothing great is ever created in a day, except for those delicious pies your grandma used to make. Success takes time. It takes years and years of work. The reason you go to school and spend 12+ years of your life learning is to be successful. Success is hard work. Success is a struggle. Success is doing a lot of incremental little steps.
Work Your Butt Off
From Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 6 rules of success, his most important rule was: work your butt off. Arnold has an inspiring story and he broke many barriers to make it and be successful. He knew he had to work. And you must also. You are going to need to work hard. And you are going to need to work hard a lot. You are going to need to spend hours working.
To rephrase Arnold’s point while you are partying and having the time of your life, someone else is working hard. Someone is studying harder, someone else is figuring out their business plan, someone else is losing sleep to be successful. Someone else is sleeping less, and they are going to do it. They are going to get better and they are going to accomplish their goals.
You Are Going To Fail A Lot
You are going to cry. You are going to fail. A lot. Anything you attempt you must be ready to fail. You are going to learn mistakes. Learn from them and move on. Understand your mistakes and understand your weakness and strengths. No pain no gain. It’s going to be very painful. You have to acknowledge it. You have to know you are going to face all those hard situations and that you are going to have to push through.
You have to push through. You have to keep going. Don’t give up. You are always going to face what feels like the biggest tragedy of your life yet. But you can overcome it. Work hard. There are no shortcuts to success. You can’t have a mindset of if I only do A, I am guaranteed B. It’s not true. You have to put a lot of work to get from A to B. Life is going to beat you to your knees. Life hits hard. You must keep going forward.
Better said by Lance Armstrong, “Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.” If you want to lose weight, if you want to get promoted, if you want to win and succeed, you must never give up. If something didn’t work, get up and try again or try something different.
Start Acting Now
So many people talk about all the things they want to accomplish. People talk about how much they want to lose weight, and they make plans for how to do it. But the minute you make a decision, the minute you make a promise to yourself that you are going to fight, the minute you start succeeding. If you want to lose weight, start now. Start this very second. If you want a new job, a promotion, start working on it now. Don’t wait for the weekend. Don’t wait for tomorrow morning. Start now. Open a book, apply to jobs. Do Something! Don’t be the person who always talks about their dreams but never does anything to accomplish them.
Nobody likes pain, and pain does suck. But it’s going to be worth it. You have to keep going. The truth is the road to success is filled with obstacles. Life is going to hit you. The bigger your goals and dreams, the more that life will hit you. If you are starting your own business or just want to become a better public speaker, life is going to be in the way a lot. Things will happen. People will make fun of you. People will try to bring you down. The circumstances might try to bring you down. Acknowledge that. Know that the road is going to be hard, but try harder.
Potatoes, Eggs and Coffee Beans
Once upon a time a daughter complained to her father that her life was miserable and that she didn’t know how she was going to make it. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed just as one problem was solved, another one soon followed.
Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Once the three pots began to boil, he placed potatoes in one pot, eggs in the second pot and ground coffee beans in the third pot. He then let them sit and boil without saying a word to his daughter. The daughter moaned and impatiently waited, wondering what he was doing. After twenty minutes he turned off the burners. He took the potatoes out of the pot and placed them in a bowl. He took the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. He then ladled the coffee out and placed it in a cup.
Turning to her, he asked. “What do you see?” “Potatoes, eggs and coffee,” she hastily replied.
“Look closer”, he said, “and touch the potatoes.” She did and noted that they were soft.
He then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.
Finally, he asked her to sip the coffee. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.
“Father, what does this mean?” she asked.
He explained that the potatoes, the eggs and coffee beans had each faced the same adversity – the boiling water. However, each one reacted differently.
The potato went in strong, hard and unrelenting, but in boiling water, it became soft and weak. The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard. However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.
“Which one are you?” he asked his daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a potato, an egg, or a coffee bean?”
Things are going to happen and life is going to be hard but you must conquer. If it was easy we wouldn’t be talking about it. Be a coffee bean or at least an egg.
Second Truth: The Road to Success is filled with Struggles to Overcome
I leave you with my favorite success video of all time by Arnold Schwarzenegger. Thanks to my friend Joey Khalil for playing this video for me over and over.
Share your thoughts below about your success stories.
In last part we are going to be talking to a fellow young professional about her thoughts about success and doing the right thing for it. Stay tuned.
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