Chasing a dream? Here’s the thing: If there comes a point where you find yourself hitting a wall, doubting yourself, questioning whether or not you are cut out for it, you are doing it right.
If only I could reach through this computer screen, grab hold of your shoulders, look you square in the eye, and tell you what my mother once told me: “Do not be afraid. These are signs of success.”
Nothing great was ever accomplished over night, even if it appears that way for others. Constantly comparing yourself is one of the most destructive hells to endure because we are all on different chapters of our lives.
Employers don’t always hire the right people. The best ones aren’t always chosen first. You and your work won’t always be justly recognized or valued.
So if you reach the point where you are not picked, if you question your competence, if you suffer the existential crisis of what you have worked so hard for to seem all of a sudden farther from your grasp, I have good news:
This is the soul-burning purgatory before ascending into the light of success.
We don’t talk enough about embracing the rejection and setbacks. Our culture emphasizes being number one. All that matters is climbing the ladder to the top. People begin feeling entitled to a coveted spot and then do not know what to do when it doesn’t work out how they planned.
So this is what you should do: Grab rejection by its horns and work through this difficult time. It often leads to creativity and opportunity. You will see and think in ways you wouldn’t have otherwise. This new perspective will make you stronger.
Slowly, but definitely, you will stand again. You will try again—as many times as needed. After finding a way to pierce through the impenetrable wall, you will know the beauty of being accepted. You will feel the gravity of your responsibility.
And, you will deliver—whatever that means for your field, you will give it all you’ve got. You will not let any moment escape you.
Unfortunately, I cannot say that it’s all happily ever after from there. Rejection, like success, comes and goes.
But I wouldn’t worry too much about what the future holds. Once you overcome a tough setback, you will learn you cannot be destroyed. You will know that if you did it once, you sure as hell can do it again because here’s the thing:
You will become one tenacious motherfucker.