At one time or another, you've probably asked yourself, "How come I haven't made it yet? Is this ever going to happen for me? I don't understand how he got poppin' so fast! WTF am I doing wrong?" These are all phrases we use when describing our frustration with the amount of success we've achieved in comparison to someone else. We all want to be poppin' right now, but the truth is, the grind is not for the faint of heart.
Word to the wise: Be patient, my friends. Take a step back to look at some of the overnight successes to whom you're comparing yourself, and you'll realize a common theme: Their failures are on display for the world to see.
Remember the mistake so and so made? It's still haunting him or her.
So walk with me as I show you five ways your grind for success beats being an overnight success every time.
1. Your failure is not on display.
One of the things we tend to see with a younger star whom you might call an “overnight success” is his or her uncanny ability to stay in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.
When you go from a completely regular life to a massive success, often you don't have time to prepare yourself for everything that comes with it. Inexperience breeds mistakes; it's part of life, so consider yourself lucky that the dumb sh*t you've done in the past has not been on display for the masses to pick you apart.
2. The grind gives you experience.
Stay close to your roots! This is sometimes hard for folks who hit success super early. Think about it: You're young and about to hit the most important stage of growth and learning in your life, and all of a sudden, you get thrust into the fast life. I got a crisp $10 bill right now saying, “You ain't ready!” (Yup just $10.)
You still need time to learn and expand. We often go through different friends and life experiences that mold us into well-versed people.
Sometimes we think it's “our time,” when in reality, we still have some growing to do. We still have to figure out what works for us, what's right and what's wrong; it's all trial and error.
Sometimes people you truly have a chemistry with don't enter the picture until you're well into your journey. A circle of like-minded people who have your best interest at heart can take you far, but it doesn't always happen when you're a youngin'.
3. You become wiser and can make better decisions.
The more we experience, the more wisdom we can gain. It's crazy when I think about all the dumb sh*t I've done in the past, as well as the diverse situations I've been through, but they all have their place in bringing me clarity and wisdom. These are things you come to value when your career begins to blossom.
Life tends to unfold in unexpected ways that can really change the game! You might move to a new city, meet someone who can change your way of thinking or just be in the right place at the right time. For me, it was all three, but without these past life experiences, I would not have been ready.
4. You are more apt for success the older you become.
Take a look throughout history, and you will see most people don't reach their zenith until years of grinding. In the book “Outliers,” Malcolm Gladwell talks about the 10,000-hour rule. Basically, the rule says that in order to become a master at something, you must put in 10,000 hours of work.
I have a long list of people who didn't hit it big until 30-plus. I'm not going to list everyone, but here are a few: Reid Hoffman (founder of LinkedIn, billionaire), JK Rowling , 2 Chainz, Oprah and a lot more.
5. You are less likely to blow it all.
I'm sure you've heard the term “one hit wonder.” Most of the time, the story is the same: Some unknown person produces a mega hit but doesn't have anything to follow it up with after the first smash.
We can look at any form of success this way. If you reach the top without having the experience to back it up, you can easily crash and burn. With more experience, comes better decision-making…usually.
So next time you're sitting around feeling sorry for yourself, count your lucky stars because you actually have time to get your sh*t together before transcending into ultimate success.
Aren't you glad you didn't get famous at 21?