It looks like everyone is an overnight success right now, except me! and probably you.It's like they've just sprung up out of nowhere, right? Wrong.
January 22, 2024
It looks like everyone is an overnight success right now, except me! and probably you.
It's like they've just sprung up out of nowhere, right? Wrong. It's a seductive idea, sure, but it's as misleading as it gets. Let me tell you that the reality is a lot less exciting but infinitely more important.
Every time we hear these stories, our brains light up with hope and aspiration. It’s energising to think that success could just be a lucky break away. But here’s the hard truth, something I've learned through my own process and through observing the real journeys of those who've made it:
Success is a really slow burn. It's the culmination of daily habits, persistent effort, and, yes, a good dose of patience.
So, if you've been feeling like you're failing because you haven't hit your jackpot moment yet, hold that thought.
Let's unpack this together and see why embracing the slow and steady path could be the most liberating thing you'll ever do. Plus; you'll be living in the real world.
You see, the world loves a good 'rags to riches' story, an example of an unknown suddenly catapulting to stardom. It's a narrative that's been sold to us time and again. But let's face it – it's not the norm, it's the exception.
The real story of success is much less about a meteoric rise and more about a relentless, steady climb.
Take the example of an Olympic sprinter. To us, their success may appear sudden as they burst across the finish line. But behind that moment of glory are years, often decades, of training, setbacks, and inch-by-inch progress. It's the unglamorous process that the cameras don't capture that set's the winners apart.
I've been exploring James Clear's approach to establishing habits and systems rather than just setting goals and objectives.
His perspective emphasises the power of cumulative habits.
For example, last year, I started the habit of a morning cold plunge in an ice bath.
And this year, from the beginning of January, I've committed to this habit daily, when possible.
It's progressively becoming easier, my alertness in the mornings has significantly improved,
and there's a noticeable boost in my mood. It could be the placebo effect, but for now, I''m going to keep going.
And it’s not just in sports where we see this overnight success phenomenon play out. This pattern holds true in business, in art, in just about every field. Consider the big names like Jay Shetty, Steven Bartlett, or Joe Rogan.
These are people who’ve been at their craft for years, even decades, before the spotlight found them. They're not overnight successes.
I love the example of Jay Shetty by the way, He spent 10 years as a monk. Do you think he would be as successful now with out those 10 years? I'm not so sure....
So let's talk about you and your journey. You’re working hard, putting in the effort, and yet, success seems like a distant dream. It’s easy to feel disheartened, to compare your chapter one to someone else's chapter twenty.
But here's a perspective shift – what if the real joy of success is not in the destination but in the journey?
That old cliche....
Your journey is about learning, growing, and inching closer to your goals day by day. It's about the small daily habits that slowly but surely steer you towards success.
The key here is to redefine what success means to you. It's not about mirroring someone else's journey; it's about carving your own path, at your own pace.
So, if you're feeling stuck, remember, it's not about a sudden leap to the finish line; it's about moving forward, one step at a time, and enjoying the process.
Because, in the end, these are the things that add up to a fulfilling and successful life.
Now, I know what you might be thinking. 'Nick, this all sounds great, but it's tough out there.' And you're absolutely right.
Growing a business, marketing your brand, maintaining your health – it's not a walk in the park.
But you need to know – it's the forward movement towards a goal that gives us satisfaction, not just the achievement of it.
Have you ever noticed how you look forward to a holiday more than the holiday itself? It's that sense of anticipation, of progress, that lights up our brains.
So just maybe, you don't want to reach your goals too quickly.
There's something fulfilling about the pursuit, about the learning curve, about the challenges that shape you along the way.
Hollywood stars who skyrocket to fame often struggle with their sudden success.
I think it's because they've missed out on the journey, on those formative experiences that ground and build character.
The real skill, then, is in being able to endure, to keep going, to find joy in the process.
When you understand this, the pressure of achieving success overnight fades away. You start to appreciate the here and now, the work you're doing, the growth you're experiencing.
But let's tackle the big elephant in the room – the feeling of failure. It's easy to feel like you're not making it when you compare your journey to others. The social media age has amplified this, showing us the highlights without the struggles. But here's the truth – the grass isn't always greener on the other side. It's greener where you water it. Your journey, your effort, your dedication – that's what matters.
If I think back just 10 years, my life has massively changed.
I wasn't the father to my incredible daughter, I wasn't running a renowned marketing agency. It's amazing how much changes over time. I was a self employed personal trainer just getting married.
If I had focused only on what I achieved each year, it might not have seemed like much. But looking back over ten years, the change and growth is huge. And I’m happier for it. That’s not to say anything of the business successes along the way.
Tony Robins said it best : Most people overestimate what they can achieve in a year, and underestimate what they can achieve in a decade.
This is the perspective you need. When you feel frustrated with your progress, take a step back. Look at how far you've come since you started. If you're facing a decline, remember the journey that got you here.
Your brain is wired to focus on threats, on the negatives.
It's an ancient survival mechanism. But don't let it hijack your journey.
Shift your perspective.
Remember, the mountain always looks higher from the bottom than it does from halfway up. And guess what? You're probably much further along than you think.
Now, I’m not saying it’s easy. Far from it. It takes guts to stick to your path, especially when those around you might be taking shortcuts or seemingly leaping ahead.
I've known so many people to chop and change what they are doing, or their strategy, and it never seems to make a difference.
Maybe over the long run they would have just been better of staying on the same path.
I love taking the family hiking in the mountains, and we all know, just keep moving your feet.
Keep moving forward, we will get there eventually. But if you change course, from your original plan, you might never get their at all.
Sometimes I like to think about what I'd do if I sold my business tomorrow. The reality is I'd probably start another business, and keep doing what I do.
Probably because I'm wired this way.
I definitely wouldn't be sitting on the beach drinking margaritas.
Think about the stories you admire, the journeys that truly inspire you. They're not tales of instant success.
In the end, it's not just about reaching your goals.
It's about who you become in the process of striving towards them. The lessons learned, the character built, the resilience created – these are the true rewards of growing a business.
And they are worth every step, every struggle, every moment of doubt.
and with all of that being said, I'll leave you with this quote from Jimmy Carr when asked about the meaning of life...
He said "Easy, It's just 5 words. It's enjoying the passage of time."....So find ways to enjoy the passage of time, don't keep worrying about the outcome.
You can't control it anyway....
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