No matter what you read or hear, there are no shortcuts to realizing your dreams. The message of simple success has become believable today, but it’s the furthest thing from the truth. The unfortunate reality is that those who buy into that message are ultimately buying into something much more dangerous called apathy.
These days, apathy rules the majority. Few people want to work hard. It’s all about how little you can do and still manage to get by. It’s all about trying to succeed with as little effort as possible, trying to look like success comes easy.
I can tell you that in all my years of living I have never met a person who held those beliefs and ended up being successful. Most of them end up living with remorse. The irony is that whether you decide to work hard for what you want or try to find a shortcut, you will end up putting in your time.
If you decide to take the lazy route, you might get more sleep today, but you will put in your time later as you struggle through days, weeks and even years of disappointment and regret.
If you decide to work hard, you’ll put in blood, sweat and tears today, and soon you’ll be reaping your reward while everyone else is wondering why they gave up so soon.
Years ago, author Napoleon Hill wrote about a man who traveled to California during the 1849 Gold Rush. Like many of the prospectors there, he was hoping to strike it rich and never have to work again. Deep down he was looking for a shortcut. For a period of time the man rose early and spent his days chipping away at the surrounding hills with his pickaxe and shovel. While he found small flakes of gold here and there, it was nothing that would make him rich. He kept digging, convinced his fortune was out there.
Then one day, after a couple months of digging, he couldn’t dig any more. He put down his tools and gave up.
After hearing the man had given up, another prospector working nearby offered to buy his tools. The man agreed, sold his tools and left the area to never prospect again. The new prospector immediately hired three men to study the land and determine where the big deposit of gold was most likely to be. A few days later they zeroed in on a spot that was three feet from where the previous man quit digging. The new prospector began digging in that spot and within a matter of days discovered an enormous deposit of gold.
The big difference between the two men was not what they did. They both dug in the same area, with the same tools, within thirty-six inches of each other. The big difference was in their perception of success. The first man thought success came easy. He was only willing to give a little effort. When success didn’t come quickly, he quit. The second man knew success required ongoing diligence, resourcefulness and collaboration. He give it everything he had. And he was eventually rewarded.
Every day, you choose which prospector you will be.