Why I Wasted 15 Months
I wanted to do it all. And I still do. However, when I began my leadership blog, I believed that I would be instantly successful. I figured that people would find my blog and immediately become addicted to my flavor of sarcasm and keep coming back for more, bringing their friends in the process.
It took me a while, but over the course of my first year or so, I discovered something about leadership, success, and most of all, about myself. I have now learned why I wasted my first fifteen months, and I want to share these tough lessons with you. Maybe I can save you some trouble, and help you move and succeed faster at the same time.
The path to success is a tough road to travel. It's filled with potholes, speed bumps, and detours all along the way. From January 2012 until June of 2013, I traveled the road alone, or, at least, I tried to. Sure, there were other people on the path, but I wasn't looking for them; I didn't think I needed them. My hope is that you can learn from my experiences and avoid doing the same things.
I wasted 15 months because…
I thought I could do it by myself.
It took me fifteen months to realize that there were other people out there with similar goals and that we could help each other.
In the beginning, I saw it as a badge of honor that what I was doing and achieving was all on my own. I felt like enlisting help was a sign of weakness. It's not. Trying to do everything by yourself is just stubborn.
Since reaching out to other bloggers and asking them questions, I've had more people visit this site, I've developed contacts across the country, and I've developed more connections to help more people. Not to mention that I've had more fun in the process. You may think you can achieve your dream by yourself, but you can't.
I thought I had to be detached in order to be authoritative.
The best way to connect with someone is to relate to them. As a salesperson at heart, I knew this. But as a writer on leadership and personal development, I'd forgotten it. Initially, I set out to coach, share what I was learning, and present those things in a formal and authoritative way.
I've since re-learned what I knew about connecting. Connecting isn't just about sharing the final product, but sharing the journey as well. There is more to be learned than just what we get from the final product – we can learn from the process itself.
I thought I wanted to follow my own path and blaze my own trail.
I naively thought that I was unique in my dream of becoming a full-time coach, speaker, and writer. Because I thought that way, I didn't look for anyone else who might be on the same path. If I did, I saw them as competition, not as someone who could help me or someone who I could help in return. I wasted fifteen months thinking that no one else was doing exactly what I was doing. While that may be technically true, that doesn't mean there aren't other people out there headed toward the same goals as me.
I didn't want to waste all that time. I also wouldn't say that that time itself was a waste. I just feel as if I had realized these things much earlier, I could have been even more productive and achieved that much more.
Maybe you're now thinking the same way that I was thinking a year ago. If you have been, maybe my story will help you realize you're not alone.
You can reach your destination much faster if you're willing to connect with other people traveling in the same direction. Even if you're not headed to the same place, you can still travel together for a while and lighten one another's load.
Question: Have you ever learned a lesson the hard way? What did you learn? I hope you'll share your thoughts with me in the comments below by clicking here!