if you’ve been a longtime reader of my stuff, and look back…you can see a very important theme that’s arisen the past several years: ‘the struggle’…
it’s not a new idea, but i just have a lot more intimate experience with it and it’s relation to (a lot more) money and (a lot more) fulfillment…
the struggle has been a daily friend of mine for years, both before and after my family and businesses started growing fast…
in fact, my business partner collin stewart (ceo of predictable revenue inc. and who runs our Acceleration Team and software parts of the business) keeps saying to me ‘man i don’t know how you do it’…
my usual non-helpful answer: ‘by now i’m used to it.’
and if you’re a parent or entrepreneur (in spirit or title), i know that struggle is your daily friend too, whether or not your a billionaire. and that is how it is supposed to be, at least through your a) growth or b) “want to or getting ready to grow but this is really frustrating” stages…
in fact, i’m writing now from a hotel in Wuhan, China, where after 2-3 years of process – and struggle – i’m finally here picking up two boys we’re adopting. adoption, like parenting, can be tiring physically, emotionally, financially and relationship-ly.
so why do it? why be a parent, why adopt, why have so many kids?
well, why start a business or non-profit? because if you go ‘all-in’ (and most people don’t) it can be just as exhausting in the same dimensions (emotionally, physically, etc).
because the gains are worth it! like any bodybuilder would tell you from their own intense work…
building a business can be the best path to financial wealth. for me, building a family has been the best path to emotional wealth.
to create anything great, important and lasting, whether to yourself or to others – requires struggle.
growth – personal or business – requires struggle.
just being a parent, whether good or bad, requires struggle!
and of course, entrepreneurship requires…well, you know.
ironically, happiness – at least enduring or meaningful, rather than momentary – requires struggle!
if you’re looking to find happiness or fulfillment in an easy way to an easy life – you’re paradoxically sabotaging yourself.
OF COURSE there are moments and times of ease, happiness, joy and fun. i have literally countless happy moments every day with my family. but my many struggles intertwine it all, because i’m redlining my growth on so many fronts: business, parenting, relationship, physically.
it’s fucking hard…
[if you want to know how i keep it up, even when i don’t want to, read the part about “Forcing Functions” in From Impossible in chapters 6 and 7]…
but after years of it, i also am more used to it, and see it’s worth. and when i get the option to either rest or do something with my wife or family or business, i rarely rest. at least for now.
all these years of intense growth (and struggle) have been worth it…which makes it easier to see how the hard work i’m investing now will be worth it too.
look back to any hard times in your life – if you knew how hard it’d be going in, maybe you wouldn’t have done it. but once you were through it, aren’t you glad you went through?
it took me years afterwards, but i can say i was glad for my failed business and my divorce, two of the hardest times of my life.
so to you, dear reader:
1) if you’re going through some shit and struggle now anywhere in your life or work, embrace it – don’t avoid or run from it. hit it head on, face it, work through it. if you’re lucky, your current struggle will resolve – at some point – and a new fresh struggle will be there shortly waiting for you…embrace that too.
2) if your only struggle is dealing with a frustration of lack of money or purpose or loneliness…you’re probably in avoidance of something, staying too comfortable (comfort is the enemy of growth). you need to find a struggle to get into. a new job, a cause, something to learn, just GET UNCOMFORTABLE and the trick – stay that way.
when things come too easy, you don’t appreciate them. trust fund kids appreciate their money? (ps: for perspective, compared to billions of other people in the world, YOU are a trust fund kid just by being born in the country you’re in.)
so don’t spend your time being jealous of people to whom things seem to come easy. first, they are probably hiding their struggle, and second it distracts you from facing head-on your own life and struggles.
you can make more money.
you can have a better relationship with your kids, friends, wife or family or self.
you can get that body shape you want.
just don’t expect major, lasting changes to be easy, come from some pill, be quick or happen when you want them to.
pick your focuses / foci / battles / priorities.
mine: family, money (money because of family…an amazing motivator).
ps: next PredictableUniversity.com class begins Jan 24. the format and class has been amazingly effective for students, even scrappy entrepreneurs with little time. email firstname.lastname@example.org for details and if there’s a current discount or special running.
…especially if you live outside the USA! 25-33% of our students come from around the world every class: Europe (PredictableUniversity Europe is almost ready), Asia, anywhere. our outbound sales process works around the world, the main differences by country are list-building and local laws can vary.
pps: picture here yesterday in china… can you tell from my eyes how sleep deprived i am from traveling?