There is a lot of misconceptions about what it takes to reach your goals.
While I do believe less can be more and working smarter not harder, let’s be real – you need to be willing and able to bust your ass in order to reach your goals.
Busting your tush doesn’t mean that you don’t get to have fun, but people need to understand that the path to growth and getting what you want isn’t entirely unicorns farting rainbows.
Don’t talk about what you’re gonna do, show people the damn results
Some of the biggest jumps I had in my professional life is when I got really quiet, put my blinders on, and put my heart and soul into what I thought would bring the biggest results in a short amount of time. Only a few people closest to me knew what I was doing and I only mentioned it briefly.
In the beginning, just show up and do the work
I’m a big believer in making life easier, figuring out ways to do less in order to get more done, and having tons of fun.
With that said, in the beginning of a new project or venture you just gotta get in the weeds and be comfortable with working hard and making messes. Sometimes the best way to learn how to make something better is to get comfortable making mistakes. Then you can create more efficient ways for you to do your work and continue to refine as you go.
Is the juice worth the squeeze?
I was lucky enough to get paid to go on a research expedition for 26 days to one of the most remote places in the world. It was a privilege that I will be honored to be a part of for the rest of my life.
The people on that ship and myself were working 12-16 hour days, every day – including the weekends. It was super stressful because I had a lot of responsibility put on my shoulders and it was my first expedition.
Have you ever worked on a rocking ship before? Imagine being asked to do complicated math or write an essay while on a Tilt-a-Whirl at a carnival. That is what it feels like.
Taking showers was also interesting. While washing my hair in a tiny slippery metal box the boat would rock so hard my face would slam into the wall. I was in excruciating pain because I was a little chubby at the time and doing a lot of manual labor like lifting giant heavy dive tanks and hoisting my tubby butt into a top bunk without a ladder. My arms and back were so sore that I would get teary-eyed washing my hair or trying to put a bandana around my neck.
Lucky for me, we had the best team and I got amazing support to show me the ropes. Was it hard? Yes. Was it exhausting? Yes. Did I miss my husband and friends? Yes. Was it weird living with the people you worked with for a month? Yes. Did I love every minute of it in spite of the long hours and stress? Yassssssss.
I knew what I wanted and the long hours, no weekends, and my muscles screaming at me were worth every experience I got. I was grateful for the fun and the hard times on that ship. I want to make it clear that I don’t work 16 hour days all the time and I’m not promoting that for the long term either. Anyone will burn out eventually from working that hard for too long. I knew what the end date was on this work trip so it made doing the hard stuff easier because I knew it wouldn’t last forever.
Is your work, your juice, worth the squeeze?
If you want something bad enough you will find a way to get it done.
Whether that is waking up before everyone else or staying up after everyone else has gone to bed getting work done.
Sometimes you are not in a season in your life to be ready to do whatever it takes – and that is okay. I’ve had times where I pushed really hard and gave everything I could, and after that, I need some downtime and the freedom to not care about anything for a few weeks or longer. The point isn’t to feel bad about not wanting something bad enough at the moment – it is to just be self-aware and acknowledge it.
What do you want so bad that you’d be willing to work 80 hours a week for six months to get it? I’m not saying you need to work 80 hours a week per se (it depends on your goal), but if you’re not willing to work 80 hours a week for what you want, then you really don’t want that thing that bad. That isn’t a dig on you, it’s okay if you don’t want it that bad. This is just a question that will help you create self-awareness on what it is you truly want.
Know what you want and why you want it. Then be willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done.
Did you find this useful? Don’t keep it a secret. I would love it if you would share it with a friend, colleague or loved one. It is the biggest compliment you can give me.