Something Elizabeth Gilbert said in this interview stuck with me.
She said that we all have to eat a shit sandwich when we get to do what we love. The shit sandwich is the price for living the way you want to live. And it doesn't disappear when you "make it" and when you find success, but it just changes.
And I'll tell you who eats the shit sandwich - everyone you've ever admired, anyone successful - they have eaten so many shit sandwiches.
Just ask them.
We all have a shit sandwich.
Right now mine is slow growth. Days when nothing happens. Doubts creeping in... but I keep working and eating it because I have to. Correction, I want to.
The alternative is giving up and that's unacceptable, frankly.
I've been seeing all of these twitter accounts that say "I'm passionate about crochet", "with deep passion for the outdoors", and all kinds of other things, including SEO (wait, really?), which fills me with both happiness and dread.
I know that behind every passion lies a person who's refusing to eat their shit sandwich and thinks everything should be easy, and when it's not, they give up or settle for the life they're "supposed" to have. It's something Gary Vaynerchuck talks a lot about in his Overnight Success video, which I've almost entirely memorized, I love it so much.
There is no such thing as overnight success.
Gary spent every minute of a good 2 decades in hustling and learning the trade. I spent whole days and summers on the computer, learning Photoshop and websites and blogging and social media, and I've tried and failed more times than I care to admit.
My shit sandwich has been a decade of not knowing what I wanted to do and making ZERO MONEY from the things I love doing. And doing the work without getting anything in return - other than the satisfaction it brings - tastes really bad.
But I didn't give up. And neither did Gary. Or Liz.
I'm not saying I'm made of money now or that I've made it. But I am happier than ever and I do have money in the bank. And people are reading my stuff and telling me it helps them on their journey. What more could you ask for?!
The rest comes with time.
Yesterday I read a very helpful, very heart-warming article from one of my favorite bloggers: Mariah Coz, who has a very successful business selling a bunch of courses, doing webinars, and just being a passive income ninja / superstar.
In the article, she says that everything is so confusing in the first year - which I am in right now - but it gets much easier later. As long as you keep hustling and eating your shit sandwich. As bad as it may taste, nothing tastes worse than regret.
So how do you keep going when everything's so overwhelming?
The key is taking one step at a time.
Just one little thing at a time, then you can build on that.
It sounds so simple - you're not supposed to figure out all the things at once, which by the way someone should have told me before I bought all these online courses (j/k). When you do it one step at a time, you don't choke, and you get it done. So whatever looked like an-impossible-to-climb mountain before now looks like a fun hike.
Which brings me to my point - anything can be achieved AND made fun if you just RESOLVE TO--
Eat your shit sandwich.
No matter what.
There's no shortcut to "success". There's no hack you can use to supercharge your business or your relationships or your life. There's just you doing the work, day in and day out, and eating your shit sandwich while everyone else is eating theirs.
There's one thing that helps you through it - knowing it will pass.
It's one of my favorite mantras because it reminds me that life and fate are fleeting, which grounds me when I'm on top and gives me hope when I'm on the bottom.
So shut up and eat your shit sandwich.
You are not allowed to complain or give excuses or procrastinate your life. You have everything you need to make this work; you also have everything to wreck it. And while the winner will keep working tirelessly until they make it work, the loser will give up very close to the finish line. And the mondo-loser will never start.
Liz and I have something in common: we'd rather eat all the shit sandwiches in the world than give up. And it's a choice you have to make.
Now tell me...