No One Tells You How They Do It

They will only tell you that they did it.

We all have that secretive side. We grow up valuing privacy & learning not to tip our hand. We are also raised to be ashamed of our mistakes and failures. Letting them define us, damage our self esteem, and allowing people, who were too gutless to even try something new, to be our judges.

This usually means that by the time we hear of a leadership or entrepreneurial  story, it has achieved great success and the less glamorous early history of struggle, rejection, and bad decisions is swept under the rug. This unfortunately sets impossible expectations of instant easy success to observers, and by the time anyone notices, the misleading version  has been told for so long that no one knows the truth anymore. Either that, or the person behind the story likes the version being told and makes no real attempt at correction.

Everyone has a blog when they’re a millionaire or once they’ve retired at 30. No one brings you along for the journey so you can see the struggle of coupon clipping, fighting with your spouse about not buying those shoes or taking that trip. No one tells you about the uncertainty they faced taking on some risky ventures, buying a particular stock or quitting their job. They want to be in the public eye only after they’ve achieved enough success to continuously control the narrative & present the version that shows no set backs. The entrepreneurs only talk about the boost in sales after going viral on twitter. No mention of the sleepless nights because they couldn’t make ends meet. The weight loss journeys are of before and after pictures with no actual journey complete with plateaus and weight gain being documented.

No one wants to take money advice from a broke blogger just like you wouldn’t take advice on how to run a bank from the CEO of Wells Fargo. But there is a difference between telling a story of hope and taking a journey. A journey is a path. Not a destination. Don’t tell people about your sales only after you’ve reached a million. Show them the months you were in the red. Let them know some days no one bought anything from you. Tell them because those who come before you need to know that, overspending once isn’t going to completely derail their early retirement dreams. Tell them so they know that the slow start to their internet business is not an mandatory death sentence. Tell them before they start thinking Rome was built in a day.

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