Being patient is difficult. After you’ve put in a lot of hard work, waiting to see the results can be excruciating. Even though it might be tough, it’s important to remember that good things take time. Whether it is investing, working out, or starting a new blog (wink, wink), everything starts as nothing. When you start to get impatient, remember that it’s a work-in-progress and learn to trust the process.
Immediate Gratification is a Disease
Our society today is built around immediate gratification. We order food online and expect it be delivered within 45 minutes. We post pictures on Instagram, and then get disappointed if we don’t receive any likes within the first 15 minutes. We’re trained to expect instant results.
We’ve built up this mindset that everything should happen instantly. If it doesn’t, it’s considered a failure.
This mindset is completely self-defeating. Good things take time to develop. Give yourself a break and enjoy the process.
Businesses today focus on convenience more than anything else. Why? Because the consumer will always do whatever is easiest. People are wired to be lazy.
Do you know who does the hard things? Creators. It takes work to break out of the routine.
Many Overnight Successes Take Years to Develop
Founded in 1994, Amazon was largely unsuccessful for the first decade of its history. Amazon only sold books at the time, and people questioned if it would be successful. Everyone thought that bigger brick-and-mortar bookstores would crush Amazon. It took 9 years for Amazon to become profitable.
Skip forward to 2020. Jeff Bezos is now the richest man on the planet. He amassed a fortune of $200 billion due to his business that he started in a Seattle garage. People look at Jeff Bezos now and think, “That could’ve been me.” It absolutely could have been. But don’t forget, it took him 25 years to get where he is today.
For nearly a decade, Amazon was laughed at and dismissed as a fad. Even after it turned a profit in 2003, people were skeptical of its long-term viability. But through hard work and perseverance, Jeff Bezos conquered the book selling giant Barnes & Noble, expanded the product offering and became one of the biggest brands in history. These things take time and effort to build.
In an interview with CNBC, Jeff Bezos said, “All overnight success takes about 10 years.” We only hear about successes when they happen. We don’t get to see all of the work that went into it. When building something, remember that things take time.
You Only Lose Once You Stop Playing
Consider the case of Harland Sanders. His father died when he was 6 years old. He lied about his age, enlisted in the United States army at 16, and was honorably discharged six months later. After his stint in the military, he went through several different career paths. Throughout his working life, Harland was a railroad laborer, a life insurance salesman, the founder of a failed ferry boat company, a failed motel owner, a small restaurant owner, and an aspiring lamp manufacturer.
His restaurant was successful for many years–mostly due to his homemade fried chicken recipe. When a new highway directed traffic away from the restaurant, the business started to go under. At 65 years old, he was forced to sell it at a loss.
At 66 years old, Harland took his monthly Social Security check and set out to profit off of his fried chicken recipe. After he was rejected 1,009 times, he finally found a taker. In 1956, he began franchising restaurants featuring his “blend of 11 herbs and spices.” By 1960, he had 400 locations. Harland “Colonel” Sanders and his Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants took the world by storm.
Even in the face of 1,000 rejections, Colonel Sanders knew that the only way to succeed was to keep going. All it was going to take was one person to tell him “yes.” Time and patience was the only thing he needed.
Leverage and Compounding
It takes a long time to see results, but once it happens, it happens fast. The reason for this is leverage.
Thinking about this mathematically, leverage works the same way as compound interest. Things are difficult at first, but things get easier with every bit of work you put in. Every time you create something, that thing starts to work for you.
With each new blog post, you build your presence on the Internet. Every time you do a push-up, you make it easier to do the next one. Every time you invest your money, you give yourself the chance for greater long-term returns.
Each bit of productive effort will contribute to returns in the future.
Since the work you do will compound on itself, the best thing to do is start right now. Always wanted to learn guitar? Pick one up and watch some YouTube videos. Want to learn how to invest? Do your research and start investing. Whatever your goal is, start working on it now.
Warren Buffett once said, “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” Start now to see results later. When you start to get impatient about how long its taking, remember that trees take a long time to grow. Water it now so you can sit in the shade later.