Consistency and patience are the keys to success
Have you ever had an overnight success?
No? Me neither.
Why? Because they don’t exist.
I’m impatient and I really wish that it would exist but all the stories you hear from Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg…
They were not overnight successes. It seems like they are because they suddenly appeared with a great idea and successful company.
But what you don’t see is the hard work, long hours, and failures they put into their companies.
What Is the Secret Behind Their Overnight Success?
Why are those people successful and why does it look like an overnight success? Because you don’t see the hard work that took them years to get to where they are now.
We usually don’t see people at day 1 of their success journey, because those are the ones that have 0 followers on Instagram and are living in the garages of their parents.
But you see those who already made it and are at day 10573.
We are jealous of their success and de-motivated by the small progress we are making.
In school, we learn to compare ourselves to others, because that is what the grading system is doing to us.
One thing I learned right at the beginning of my online writing career: don’t compare your day 1 to someone else’s day 3,583. They are way ahead of you and put in a lot of hours already.
You have to gain experience and fail a few times before arriving at their level.
So what is the secret then to the mysterious “overnight success”?
Do you already know it?
Being consistent in showing up every day.
Doing the work that needs to be done every day.
And not giving up.
You will not get into shape by working out once.
You have to do it every day (with breaks of course) for a longer period of time to see results.
The same principle goes for any other success.
What if There Is Still No Success After 20 Days?
Usually people at some point quit because they don’t see any result.
That’s why so many New Year’s resolutions fail.
Creating a habit takes at least 20 days of consistently doing it before it sticks.
I know the feeling of waiting impatiently for success. I hate that feeling.
But you have to go through that pain to get to your dream future.
By being consistent you will improve and you will get better.
Your life will improve with every step because you are working towards your goals.
Consistency Means Forever
The thought that is bothering me the most is that you have to do it every day forever.
Consistency doesn’t do breaks. Only 1 day of a break is usually fine.
You will have to continue doing it until you get to the point of achieving your goal.
After that? You have to continue showing up and doing the work.
Life is lifelong learning.
If you stop, you are not just stopping but you are going backwards.
Are you thinking now that life is a long time?
Then you have to make the conscious decision of what you want to do in your life because you will do it for the rest of your life.
This doesn’t mean that life isn’t changing. At some point, you will have to adjust your morning routine because kids come along, or your company needs you to come in earlier.
Visualize your future self and how you want your life to look like.
And then you know what you have to give up or start doing to get there.
Getting Used to It and Enjoying It
Nobody likes running at the beginning. It’s hard and exhausting.
But by sticking to it your body will get used to it, you will see the changes and you will enjoy it.
I’m an online writer, but I never wanted to be one. Because I didn’t like it at school and I never had good grades. I thought I was not good at it.
Now after I’ve written over 160 articles on Medium I’m
- getting used to it
- enjoying it
- seeing progress
- getting good at it
By practicing and getting good at something you will start enjoying it too.
So How Do You Start?
“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”
— Jim Rohn
Consistency and success start with tiny habits that grow into big changes.
Stop making excuses.
Start with the smallest step you can do today to go towards your goals.
For example, you want to get fitter and healthier:
- start with drinking one cup of coffee less each day
- Just eat one fruit more
- Start with 5 minutes of light stretching or walking
And then you slightly improve.
1% improvement each day is enough.
A really good book for that is ‘Atomic Habits’ by James Clear. It gives you a great direction on how to start with new habits.
Overnight success doesn’t exist.
Instead, work consistently towards your goal and you are on the path to your own success story.
Consistency is the secret of every success story.
“Success isn’t always about greatness. It’s about consistency. Consistent hard work leads to success. Greatness will come.”
— Dwayne Johnson
How I was able to study, part-time work, and lead a student organization at the same time and you can too:
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