Want to Succeed? Prepare to Be BORED Silly!

I’ll admit it.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve always been a little impatient.

I want what I want, and I want it NOW!

Unfortunately, this “instant gratification” mindset has been something of a curse throughout my life.

It hasn’t been until recently that I truly understand what it takes to be successful. And that is this:

If you want to succeed … realize it might be BORING getting there!

Let me explain …

In the society we live in today, now more than ever, we’ve been conditioned to get what we want almost as fast as we can think it!

You want to talk to someone, you text them and expect a response right away. You want the answer to a question, you “Google” it and get your answer in seconds. You want to have lunch, you can swing by a drive-thru and have it within 3 minutes or less from the time you place your order.

In advertising, we see folks who “did it” in just 30 days … 60 days … 90 days tops. Reality television shows us that in just a few weeks someone can go from complete obscurity to stardom, achieving everything they’ve ever dreamed of.

Things happen fast in our world today. It’s something we’ve come to expect.

And that’s exactly why I think if you want to achieve something great, you’ll need to accept the fact that the journey might feel long and boring.

To achieve something truly worthwhile takes time. Whether you want a beach body, a lot more money in the bank, a better relationship, improved health, to become a great writer, an awesome golf swing – it’s all probably going to take quite a bit longer to achieve than you initially thought it would.

And until you realize that, you’ll find yourself in a vicious cycle of stress and frustration (I know from experience!).

Dealing with “The Grind”

Along the journey to achieving your goal, whatever it may be, there’s a period of time called “the grind.”

See, once the initial excitement of deciding on your goal and creating a plan wears off, then it’s just a matter of following your plan – day in and day out.

It’s in this daily action-taking that you find yourself in “the grind.”

And this is exactly where SO many people fall off the wagon. They don’t stay consistent with the actions they need to take in order to reach their goal. That’s because it IS a grind and it’s pretty boring!

Even when it’s a goal you could achieve in as little as 90 days or less … it still feels like FOREVER when you’re in the thick of it.

The key is to accept the fact that grinding it out every day is boring and a necessary part of success. It’s not flashy or sexy. It’s not exciting like creating the plans, researching or getting more information about the goal you want to achieve.

And if you can successfully stay in the grind long enough, you’ll FINALLY see the success you’re looking for.

I think at some level we all know this to be true.

It’s the fact that we don’t want to accept it (based on the evidence we see of instant results all around us) that leads us to frustration and not getting to where we want to be in life.

If you pay attention, you’ll see this happening all the time.

For example, how many people have you seen go on a quest to get fit only to give up after a few weeks? It’s usually because they get frustrated due to unrealistic expectations.

They’ve put in weeks of effort into dieting and exercising and still don’t look like the model on the cover of the fitness magazine.

As a result, they figure something must be wrong and either give up completely or try something else (when the truth of the matter is it probably took that cover model YEARS of proper dieting and exercise to get into the shape he or she is in!).

Or take someone who’s inspired to learn a musical instrument after watching a performance by a true master.

They’ll start off taking lessons and practicing with plenty of energy and excitement. Then days will pass … weeks … maybe even a few months. Then, when they see that despite all the practice they’ve put in, they still can’t play like the master, they figure it’s something they’ll never be able to do.

As a result, they’ll give up and embark on a different goal to fill the void that’s left behind.

Again, the fact of the matter is – it took that master YEARS of grinding it out every day (probably even on holidays!) to get to where he or she is.

Remember, all success really is, is small accumulations over time. The only way that happens is by taking daily action and grinding it out.

And the best advice I can give (though cliché it may be) is to find a way to enjoy the journey.

Figure out a way to enjoy the process of getting to where you want to be, and the goal will take care of itself.

This is something that’s highly unique to you and something you’ll have to discover as you go.

The best way I can describe this concept is with this quirky analogy …

Achieving your goals is like playing a video game.

The goal is to beat the game, get a high score, etc. The way you get there, however, is by focusing on the process … by playing the game. If all you do is focus on getting that high score or beating the game but don’t actually play (or play long enough), you’ll never beat it!

(And come on … how much fun would a game be in the first place if you didn’t get to go through the “process” of playing it and instead got that high score or beat it as soon as you turned it on?)

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Published: June 27, 2012

4 Responses to “Want to Succeed? Prepare to Be BORED Silly!”

  1. Thank you for writing another excellent article. I appreciate your contribution here.

    In order to succeed, you need to postpone that feeling of instant gratification.

    I wanted to achieve a PhD in Management instantly, but it took me five long years to achieve that goal.

    Truth be told, there were times when I felt like giving up and giving in to the temptation of calling it a day and hanging up my boots.

    But I persevered through the good times and the bad times.

    One thing, one at a time: slow and easy does it and you will reach your goal.

    Archan MehtaJune 27, 2012 at 1:21 pm

  2. Excellent post, Guillermo! This speaks to my attitude and actions for, unfortunately, most of my life. I've just now come to a place where I realize success is about focus, consistency and sticking with it. Oh how much time I've wasted giving up to easily, or letting myself get bored, therefore, allowing myself to stop my efforts because I didn't get my instant gratification.

    I love your analogy of the video game. That's exactly how I'm looking at my life and my career now. Make it a game. Go for it. Have fun! See what you can do and how far you can go...and how high of a score you can get! That's what I intend to do.

    Cheers, Jennifer

    Guest (Jennifer F)June 27, 2012 at 10:06 pm

  3. Well said.

    For whole books (all of which are excellent) about this subject, I'll also recommend reading "Mastery" by George Leonard and "The War of Art," "Do The Work" and "Turning Pro" by Steven Pressfield.

    But you encapsulated them in a nice nutshell in this article.

    John ThomasJune 27, 2012 at 10:30 pm

  4. Thank you for the excellent discussions on how consistency and persistence will help eventually. We all know quitting is easy and we have good reasons for that, always. Let's continue until the goal is achieved.

    Guest (John Ip)June 30, 2012 at 7:19 pm


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