Anyone who tells you differently is lying.
Photo by Diego Jimenez on Unsplash

If I had a dime for every time someone claimed instant or overnight success is possible, I’d have… a lot of dimes. Success – any kind of success – certainly can happen quickly, but it’s rarely fast, and it’s rarely easy.

I don’t care what kind of success we’re talking about. Financial, health, personal, relationship… doesn’t matter. 

Success takes time and hard work.

Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. True success takes a lot of hard work over a period of time. If you’re building a business, for example, you can expect to spend a lot of evenings creating content, planning your next steps, and making sure everything is in place.

If you have clients, you can expect to spend a lot of time working with them or providing products and services for them. That means a significant time and energy investment.

Clearly, not an overnight thing.

Be patient and keep working toward your goal.

Whatever your goal is, be patient if you don’t reach it quickly. Let’s use earning money on Medium as an example. If your goal is to be making $100 per month but you’re only making a few bucks a month, do you quit? No. Of course not.

Keep working toward your goal doing what you know you need to do. Over time, your hard work – if you’re doing the right things – will add up, and you will have a better chance of reaching your goals.

Don’t give up when you hit road bumps.

No matter what your goal is, most likely you’ll hit bumps along the way. Something won’t go your way. You’ll put in a lot of time and effort and not see the results you were hoping for.

That’s exactly when you shouldn’t give up. If everyone gave up when they hit difficulties along the way, nothing worthwhile would ever get done.

Celebrate small victories.

On your road to success, celebrate when cool stuff happens. Your goal may be to get to $100 on Medium. Celebrate when you get to $25 or $50. Those are small victories.

Celebrate your first sale of your new product.

Celebrate getting more followers.

Small things are worth celebrating, and they keep you motivated.

Learn from failure.

When you mess up or don’t see the results you want, take time to reevaluate the situation and learn what you could do differently.

Don’t kid yourself into thinking successful people haven’t failed. The difference is they’ve learned from their mistakes and now know what works.

Get connected with people who encourage you.

Surround yourself with people who encourage you and help you to work toward your goal – or to help you reevaluate if your goals aren’t realistic. People need people. You and I are no exception. 

I’m tremendously grateful for my wife who encourages me in my writing and business efforts. 

No matter what your goal is, get connected with people who can work with you, encourage you, support you, and correct you where needed.

That’s how you win the race.

Don’t let success become an idol.

I write this speaking in generalities because “success” can apply to anything I suppose, and there are all types of success. But whatever your goals and whatever you’re working toward, don’t let it consume your life. Not only is that unhealthy, but it’s a great way to actually work against your goals.

Lest that sound counterintuitive, understand this: You need to be making time for other things and focusing on what is most important in life.

No amount of success can replace or be a substitute for the important things in life.

Be realistic about success. Understand that it isn’t fast or often easy. But if your goals are worth reaching, having a healthy mindset can only help.