Your success means jack shit.
That loan you got from a parent? Hah, you cheated your way to success.
Asked a few friends to like or share social media posts? You don’t deserve that lead, it’s gaming the system.
You weren’t homeless and penniless when you started your business? Your success is meaningless.
It’s called playing life on ‘Hard Mode’ – and it’s become the new aspirational.
You see posts about it day in, day out.
About real successful people. The ones who started from nothing. The ones who lost everything. Those who cherished the struggle.
And if you didn’t? You had it easy. Your success was not of your own making. You don’t deserve it. Sound familiar?
Of course, there are times when this argument is pertinent. Privilege being a good example.
Two individuals start the same business. One, a ‘chap’ from the Bullingdon club gets a cash injection from daddy. The other? Hard graft, savings, penny pinching and burnout. Which one’s more likely to succeed?
You’d be more than a little naïve to suggest the second guy – and that’s true inequality.
But, when it’s asking your mates if they could like a post, or if someone you know could use your services – that’s different. That’s making the most of the resources you have available to you.
Although it's really no different to Bullingdon Boy making the most of his resources, the fact remains; playing life on ‘hard mode’ when you don’t have to is pointless. And will make you less successful.
A lot of this attitude boils down to mindset. Scarcity vs abundance.
In a scarcity mindset, you think there’s not enough business to go around and as such, someone else’s success is bad for you.
A simple way of looking at it is like cake (I like cake). If your work is a cake and someone comes and takes a big chunk – that leaves less for you – and might create an atmosphere of resentment.
That resentment can easily turn into self-sabotage because your lack of success can then be someone else’s fault. ‘They took all the work’, ‘they had funding’, ‘they had this and I didn’t’.
Your ego won’t let you admit that sometimes, the right thing to do is keep going, don’t worry who took a slice of cake and crack on doing your stuff in the simplest possible way.
Harsh truth. Making things harder for yourself doesn’t make you more deserving of success.
Also, cake is made to be shared, much like work. It’s a slog when you’re all by yourself. It boils down to the ego – a subject I’m no expert on, but if you want to learn more read this by Kiera.
So, what happens when we switch that mindset and begin to think of jobs, or work, or projects - not as cake, but as a reservoir. No matter how much water gets scooped out, it’s always being topped up – and even if it does dry out, there are much bigger factors at play. Factors well beyond our control.
When we start to think in an abundance mindset, we realise there are ample opportunities out there, and we can let our ego take a back seat and begin to connect the dots.
Neurons begin to fire, and this comes to mind: ‘If I’m happy for others and celebrate their success, they back me and my business grows as a result’. It’s the definition of a win-win.
So, instead of letting your ego dictate how easily you find success, try backing others and celebrating theirs.
Support your friends kicking off new ventures. Ask for help. Stop cherishing the struggle, it doesn’t make you better – it makes you bitter.
This blog originally appeared on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/cherish-struggle-get-over-yourself-sarah-potter/