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Overnight Success

By September 21, 2012 No Comments

How cool would it be to wake up one day and have instant fame and wealth? Have you ever dreamed of hitting it big? I know I have but… reality check! There is really no such thing as an overnight success.

The world is full of overnight success stories. Society suddenly finds the diamond in the rough and the person becomes an instant sensation. Too often, we as a society look at those who have attained fame, wealth, and prestige, and think it just all of a sudden happened. We think that our next great idea is somehow magically going to turn us into the next big thing. There is no such thing as an overnight sensation. From reading, observation, and study I have come to the realization that behind every successful person, there is a trail of heartache and failure. In his book, [amazon-product text=”Outliers” type=”text”]0316017930[/amazon-product], Malcolm Gladwell introduces the concept of 10,000 hours. In order to become an expert and attain true mastery, Gladwell says one must have practiced the specific talent or skill for at least 10,000 hours. [amazon-product text=”The Beatles” type=”text”]http://www.amazon.com/The-White-Album-Beatles/dp/B0025KVLU6/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1348223386&sr=8-2&keywords=the+beatles[/amazon-product] took America by storm and revolutionized music. However, they did not do this overnight. They spent many nights, years, and countless hours playing and perfecting their craft before anyone in America had ever heard of them. They played in dive bars and clubs, and rehearsed over and over again until they found their identity and perfected their craft. If we want to become a famous success story, we must first realize that it is not going to happen overnight. We must pay a price and put in the hard work that goes unseen.

No one likes to be told they are not good or talented enough. It is a crushing blow that many do not overcome. If you want something bad enough, you must be willing to deal with rejection and failure. A quote I love on this topic says, “If you want something bad enough, you must be willing to ask 1,000 people for it.” This means we have to be willing to be told “no” over and over again. We must be able to take rejection and keep moving forward. A prime example is The King, [amazon-product text=”Elvis Presley” type=”text”]http://www.amazon.com/30-1-Hits-Elvis-Presley/dp/B00006AG5N/ref=sr_1_2?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1348223509&sr=1-2&keywords=elvis+presley[/amazon-product]. Mr. Presley is known as the King of Rock n Roll. He remains an iconic figure in Pop Culture more than thirty years after his death. Even Elvis experienced rejection and failure. He was fired after his first performance at the Grand Ole Opry. The manager told him, “You ain’t going nowhere. Son, you otta go back to driving a truck.” It would have been easy to quit and follow the advice of the manager, and most people would have. The great ones have a will to succeed. They will not let anything get in their way. Are you willing to go through that? If so, you will become successful. It may not happen as soon as you want it, but if you put up with the “no’s” and work through the pain, your time will come.

One of my personal heroes is legendary basketball coach John Wooden. Coach Wooden holds the all-time record for most NCAA Basketball Championships won. He won an amazing 10 titles in 12 years, seven of which were consecutive. In his book, [amazon-product text=”My Personal Best” type=”text”]0071437924[/amazon-product], Coach discusses how some people saw him as an overnight success. His first title came in 1964 and Coach Wooden was amazed at how people would view him as an overnight success. He was not an overnight success. His early playing and coaching experiences helped get him to his first NCAA Championship. A lot of hard work and years were spent getting to that moment.  He stated his success went back about fifty years, “All the way back to our farm in Centerton, Indiana—when my dad nailed a tomato basket up to our barn.” Coach Wooden’s long road to success began at that hoop, not when he got to UCLA or when he won his first NCAA Championship in 1964. The point to take from Coach Wooden is that your life journey is what prepares you for success. You can learn something from every experience and it will help you in the future. The journey is greater than the reward. The path we take may be long and sometimes difficult, but it is necessary.

The next time you read or hear about someone making it big and becoming a sensation, remember that it did not happen overnight. When you experience failure and heartache, do not quit. If you have a passion for your talent, be stubborn. Do not let anyone determine what you become. Be willing to put in long, hard hours that go unnoticed. Be aware that it may take years for your dream to become a reality. But, if you are determined to do to what it takes, you will reach your goal.

Have a great week! Be an RGP today!