Hard work is the way to success. Do you agree or disagree?
Why do we think we have to work hard to get what we want?
Why do we find it funny when someone asks us, “Working hard? Or hardly working?
The world rewards hard work and effort. We measure our value by the effort others put into us. We measure the value of our achievements by how much work (aka effort, pain, sacrifice, blood, sweat & tears) we’ve put in to get it.
Many of us come from a long line of honorable men and women who valued hard work above all else. They spent their lives dedicated to working hard. Hard work was their badge of honor.
Working hard isn’t a bad thing, but how many hard workers do you know who slog in the trenches all of their lives, with very little to show for it?
We call it “the grind.” We are told we must crush it, kill it, and smash it every single day.
Following this line of thought, crushing something is the only way you can succeed. To be a winner you must crush “it” every day.
When, friend, do we get a chance to rest?
There ain’t no rest for the wicked, money don’t grow on trees. – Lyrics by Cage the Elephant.
If the slog is how you succeed, can you see how going easy on yourself feels like you are losing out? Or perhaps, because you don’t feel like slogging in the trenches…perhaps you want to play and create instead…are you a loser? Not doing, real work?
No pain, no gain? Now, that is a question!
Consider with me how we are conditioned to regard effort, struggle, and pain as the only way to gain. We even go so far as to consider these things as rewards for a job well done. What, exactly, are we gaining?
Under these conditions, we consider our effort, struggle, and pain as valuable evidence because success on these terms is as rare as a diamond. The struggle to success is rare, yes. Perhaps it is because it goes against the creative force of the cosmos? Our own 1st Nature?
That’s how we have been conditioned to value the rare. We remember the large successes because they are a rare positive in a sea of negative. We devalue the small successes of daily life because they seem almost effortless.
Because of what we value, not enough effort leads to feelings of not enough.
Because of what we believe, work harder leads to work becoming increasingly harder.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. – English proverb
But then, we get a mixed message like the one above. Who wants to be that guy, right?
But then, we look at our family and we want to fit in, and we compare ourselves to the successful ones we see on FB and Instagram and Twitter and we think, I don’t have time to play, which leads to, I can’t play, so there something wrong with me.
Maybe I am a loser. Deep inside, I don’t want to work that hard. I don’t wanna do what it takes. I’m a failure.
And then we hear, Work smarter, not harder.
And then we hear, Work smarter and harder.
Wanna know the most confusing thing of all? We humans value our losses more than our wins. We have a natural tendency towards noticing the threat in an otherwise neutral day – it is an evolutionary attribute that kept us alive, way back in the day when Grog may have wanted to beat us over the head with a log, or the dire wolves came in for a sneak attack.
However, there are plenty of successful ones who define success on their own terms. They don’t grind or slog. They don’t kill, crush, or slay anything. We don’t hear so much about them because they are quietly working, their eyes so full of dreams and are so engaged in their own business that they don’t have time to complain about being too busy…or compare themselves to you…or to promote their success on social media.
Followers don’t automatically equal success, no more than being alone automatically equals loneliness.
It’s a matter of demand and supply. We need. We voice the need. We demand that our need be filled.
Others step up to fill the need. They declare that they understand the nature of your need because they understand theirs.
They have a formula you’ve asked for and will pay for.
It’s a no brainer. Easy-peasy for those ones, right?
And they are killing it. Crushing it. Slaying it.
You have become their target audience. What’s wrong with that picture?
Are they preying on you? Or merely responding to your need?
How long will we be content to live by other people’s quotes? Who would we be if nobody agreed with us?
Emmerson said, The world belongs to the energetic.
What is the solution? Perhaps it lies in the difference between energy and effort?
Now, that is a question…