We, as individuals, each have our own ideas of what success means to us. We look into the future and imagine ourselves happy, healthy, wealthy, and on top of the world. We like to envision what our lives will be like when we have no worries, stress, or responsibilities.
If I asked you to picture a life of success right this minute, what would it look like for you?
Perhaps travelling around the world golfing a new course every day?
Maybe sleeping in until the sunrise in your beach bungalow wakes you up, and you stroll down to the ocean for a morning surf?
Maybe it’s spending every single evening with your family over dinner in your beautiful home.
I wouldn’t be disappointed in any of these lifestyles.
But here’s a realization. We get too caught up thinking that more time for surfing, or more money to travel, or less time at work, or less responsibility will make us happy. We think that extra income, more time off, nicer things, a faster car, a shinier watch, or slimmer figure will solve our problems. We subconsciously know this isn’t true, but we have hard time realizing it. Let me prove it to you.
Think back to when you were a teenager angling for your first vehicle. You may have worked summer jobs, negotiated with your parents, and anything in between to get that first car. I know, because I did the same. It was a 1986 Honda Accord two-door hatchback, 4 years older than I was. Oh and it made a horrendous squealing noise. But I didn’t care. I wanted this car because then I could drive myself to school, rather than riding the school bus. I could some freedom. This car was going to solve all of my problems.
Eventually I saved up enough money and bought this 1986 Honda Accord. Then I realized the responsibilities that come with owning a car – insurance, tires, gas, & maintenance. Eventually I wanted a nicer car with less maintenance issues, nicer interior, and less squeaky.
While this car did solve my immediate transportation problems, it also unveiled to me new problems in life (ugh.. auto insurance still irks me).
Many real estate investors have grand visions of kicking back and receiving mail box money. As do I! Who wouldn’t want this type of lifestyle?! Doing what you want, where you want, and when you want. Financial freedom is a common goal, and rightfully so. Having financial freedom might as well be a superpower.
However you envision success, or what being at the top looks like to you, it’s important to understand and appreciate the climb. Sure, it’s easy to throw out buzz words like hustle, grind, and hammer. But do you really appreciate this part of the process?
The fact is, your climb will never end. You will never reach the summit. There will always be something else for you to achieve. So get comfortable with the climb to the top. It’s a long, never-ending journey.
This isn’t to discourage you from chasing your dreams. In fact, it’s your obligation to do so. Simply sitting back and wishing your way to the top isn’t going to work. So keep climbing, no matter what obstacles come your way. Soon enough, you’ll be on top of the world.