Success, or at least the way we perceive it, is quite a tricky phenomenon these days. Media consumption is part of daily life for most of us, whether it’s through a television, smartphone, tablet, or at a gas pump. It seems like everyday there is a new pop star or starlet gracing these screens, with their screaming fans in tow.
It’s really easy to think that these people came out of nowhere, rocketed to stardom, and were made into an overnight success.
But this situation rarely exists, for a multitude of reasons–but yes–every now and then someone that hasn’t done much does get famous overnight, but that’s usually about as long as it lasts.
There are several thoughts I have around this and what is actually happening when it comes to fame and fortune.
Fame that is quickly attained most often disappears equally fast.
Imagine you go from living a relatively normal life to suddenly having the attention of millions of people. Getting a lot of attention for a moment isn’t actually all that hard–it’s keeping it that’s the trick. It’s nearly impossible to maintain a momentum you never had to begin with.
People often wish for big jumps in “success” but aren’t ready for it.
For example, if you are terrible at managing your money while making $50,000 per year, why on earth would you think that life would get easier making $500,000? It’s likely that you’ll simply buy things that are 10x as expensive and make 10x more expensive of mistakes. Much of life is setup to foster mistakes and learning experiences as we grow into higher incomes, allowing us to make mistakes.
The same goes for things like an email list–if you have 100 people on your list and it makes you anxious to have a few people unsubscribe every time you send out an email, but wish you were able to suddenly get 100,000 people on your email list, what do you think would actually happen? It’s likely that you’d be so anxious about losing potentially thousands of people that you’d never even send an email out. The big numbers don’t come until we’re truly ready for it.
Lots of people had leaked sex tapes–but Kim Kardashian turned hers into a global empire over the following years. Very few people can do what she did, whether it was through the people she surrounded herself with or under her own merit. I’d say it’s a sign of great business sense to surround yourself with capable people, rather than just try to be capable yourself.
It is daily practice and growth that prepares us for lasting success.
Opportunities are often not easy to come by, but they are there. The key, is being able to deliver as soon as the opportunity presents itself. Having the tools to be able to say, “Yes” and then figure it out later based on your knowledge of past experiences. It is this ability that allows you to excel to higher levels than you’ve ever been at before.
If you’re not practiced, or if you haven’t put in your hours, you likely won’t be able to deliver when those opportunities arise. It’s as simple as that. A slow burning rise will last much longer than one that happens seemingly overnight.