“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty… I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life. I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well.” — Theodore Roosevelt
Learn the hard things. Do the hard things. Why? Because many people do not want to. The harder things are to do, the less people do them. That is, except for exceptional people. I have been fortunate to run two marathons in the past two years, which is something most people will never do once. But let me tell you, it was HARD! It required many days of running 10+ miles and several runs of 20+ miles. It required getting up at 4–5am on a Sunday morning to run before it was too hot. It required getting through soreness and pain and lifting in the gym, and routine stretching. It is an intense 4 months of training. But the reward makes it all worth it. To accomplish something most people never will attempt means separates yourself from the vast majority. Getting those medals is a great feeling.
To accomplish great things, you must tackle the hard. Embrace it and stick with it. If you want to become a doctor, you will need to learn complex details about the human body. You will have to learn about pharmacy, and you will have to have a great understanding of science. It is HARD, and that’s why not everyone will become doctors. Those that want it no matter the obstacles in the way will have the best shot at achieving it.
My first taste of this experience was when I was working towards a masters degree in biology. I was working on a molecular biology research project for my thesis, one of the requirements to graduate. I was stuck in my research, unable to advance my project. My frustration showed and a professor said to me, “There’s a reason it is hard. If it was easy, there would be no need for research.” That gave me a totally different perspective, and eventually I made progress, finished the research, and got my degree. It was hard, and it was well worth it.
Now my thoughts turn to startups and how this applies. Like most things worth having, startup success does not come easy. The premise assumes you have a good problem to solve because if your idea isn’t good, overcoming “hard” may not matter! Assuming the premise is correct, how many hoops are you willing to jump through? Are you willing to learn to code if needed? Will you give up recreational things to overcome the hard tasks at hand? When you launch to crickets, are you going to pack up and go home…go back to your day job? Or are you going to overcome each hard obstacle, one obstacle at a time? Because it probably won’t be like “The Social Network” movie that so many dream about. That movie made it look “easy”, and that’s why so many people got inspired by the movie to want to be an entrepreneur. That’s why so many give up once they realize it’s “hard.” But you should stick with it and grind because it is hard, and nothing worth having comes easy. And if you only want easy ways and shortcuts, you will likely not get very far.
Be resilient and good luck!
Cyber Dust: +jwhite1