The Dirty Secret Of Becoming Successful

I worked in the tech industry for a long time.

I know people in professional services, healthcare, law and at the top of their game in almost every industry there is.

The CEOs I've met over the years ranged from companies that had $1m in revenue all the way to $30B.

I've sat in rooms of 10 people and rooms of 10,000 people listening to successful men and women share the secrets of what got them there today.

But I have also listened to business owners going bankrupt.

I've coached millionaires that were losing their fortune.

I am constantly talking to people that are 40 years old and don't even have $30,000 to their name.

There's a strong correlation that all of these tend to have that generally equates to success or failure...

Effort.

Is Effort Alone The Key To Success?

I'm 6-feet tall and have decent athleticism for my age.

Back in my heyday of peak fitness, I could barely dunk a basketball.

Does that mean if I put forth maximum effort into basketball, I could've been greater than Lebron James or Michael Jordan?

Did they just "out-effort" me? Well...yes.

But they were also 6-inches taller than me with naturally stronger builds and huge hands for ball control.

So it wasn't JUST effort.

But I also know someone who was 6'5", an incredible athlete but didn't put forth the effort and let his physical gifts go to waste and I had a more successful basketball career than he did.

Obviously, effort is part of it, but what else is there?

The Dirty Secret

One of the great books written in the past decade is Grit by Angela Duckworth.

She says, "To be gritty is to put one foot in front of the other. It's not a sprint, it's a marathon."

Lots of people have skills.

Lots of people have effort.

Lots of people have passion.

Lots of people have focus.

But not a lot of people can combine and sustain those for long periods of time.

Why is that important?

Because of what I'm calling the "6-Month Mountain". 

When people

  • start a podcast
  • post online to build a brand
  • start a new workout regime
  • create a new business venture
  • almost any new undertaking

I keep running into the stat that they quit by month 6.

How many things in your life have you been doing for longer than 6 months? Are you really good at that thing? It's not a coincidence.

The thing that most people realize about success is that its a journey, not a destination.

That's why having the GRIT to keep putting one foot in front of the other regardless of external circumstances is the dirty secret to success.

Many times, you can simply outlast your competition.

The late and great Kobe Bryant once said that by year 12 in the NBA, he was so much better than everyone simply due to the fact that there were only a few guys that lasted that long in the league. 

By just "staying in the game", he had

  • taken more shots
  • played against more players
  • studied more film

than 95% of everyone else in the league.

The same is true in life.

Whatever you want to be good at...

  • investing
  • brain surgery
  • making the best burger in town
  • becoming the top YouTuber in your niche
  • building a business to serve a specific audience

The dirty secret is simply that by continuing to relentlessly apply your skill, effort and talent towards the journey, you will find success.

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