This week, we turn to a subject that is sensitive to some for a few reasons. Too often I hear people complaining about issues that they are having in life — they are unhappy with their job, with their weight, with their own eating habits — but when I suggest to them that it will take hard work to get to where they need to be, the suggestion is met with scoffs and dismissal. “I just can’t catch a break,” they say, “and things just are not fair.” Maybe so — but things are not fair for most of us out here, and many people have accomplished quite a lot under similar or more trying circumstances.
I once heard the author Brian Tracy say that there is an easy test to know if something you think is holding you back is an excuse or not — if someone else has a similar thing in their life and they manage to overcome it — or, for that matter, many other people manage to overcome it… it very well may be an excuse.
Darren Hardy, author of the excellent book The Compound Effect, recently tweeted something quite brilliant about excuses.
The lesson of the week is about hard work. The actual line from the soap bottle is, “Only hard work — God’s law can save us…” and continues with something I will address next week, perhaps coincidentally to be published on Thanksgiving.
Almost all success begins and ends with hard work. You may not like or enjoy reading books by Dan Brown (author of The Da Vinci Code) but when it comes down to it, the only way that he got to be a successful writer was to sit down every day and to write. A combination of working hard and having the discipline to keep at it daily is what got The Da Vinci Code written.
This blog, too, takes hard work — I work a thirty-five hour work week and have two children at home to take care of when I am not at the office. That means that nearly every single thing that I publish in this blog is time that I schedule specifically for doing that. When I look at the statistics of readers coming to the blog, I see that when I miss a few days of writing the readership plummets — but when I write and publish something every day, it goes up every day. No coincidences here — hard work leads to success.