5 min read

I’ve glossed over the last year of my life, and I’ve seen mostly struggle. I’ve had a couple of great days and those were amazing days; however, most of my last year has been full of pain on levels that I’d rather not describe. How I’ve managed to go through this with my sanity just about in check, I do not know. Does anything come easy? Doubtful.

I do owe some of my survival to a handful of people who really supported me at my worst, and gave me that opportunity to get back up on that horse to keep fighting. Thank you guys, you know exactly who you are. The rest of my gratitude goes to someone who really put up with my frustrated, depressed self, and believed in me when I did not believe in myself. Thank you for that. I’ll never be able to repay you for your patience (because the Universe knows that’s an insane amount) or your kindness.

Now, I best be on to the topic at hand: nothing good comes easy. And it doesn’t. This is not going to be one of those boring posts that tell you all the things you need to do to succeed. If you want it, be prepared to pay hell a visit and pry it from the devil’s hands. It’s just that simple.

Here are three things I’ve learned in the last year that might be of some help to you, or might not.

If you can believe it, fight for it, because no one else will.

Have you ever told someone one of your goals and they look at you like you’re crazy? They might even say, “keep dreaming”, or, “good luck with that”. You do that, you keep on dreaming, but every single day of existence, every moment, you chisel a little deeper into the wall that stands between you and that dream.

No one will ever believe in your dreams like you do, and that’s fine, because no one will share that vision and passion in the same way. While you might meet someone who shares a similar goal, or a goal with similar attributes, it will never be the same. So, know this always, that no one will ever believe in your goals and dreams the same way you do. And if people laugh at you, that’s okay. Because one day, if you keep chiseling, you will be laughing all the way to the bank, with the money they paid for the product of your dreams and sacrifice.

Just before you think you’ve hit rock bottom, you’ll grow a pair… of wings.

Going after your dreams is tough; if you’ve ever chased one, you’d be nodding right about now. The number of risks you take every day by just going after what you want is paralysing, but you have to do it. The phase just after you dive in, I like to call a free-fall. You’ve taken the leap of faith off the cliff, and you have no safety net, no parachute; you’re trusting in this idea that it will somehow save you from becoming lunch meat for the vultures.

You’ve been putting in the work, and the hours, and the last of your hard-earned money, and you believe with your imaginary gizzard that this is going to work. That’s faith, textbook. You have to keep working. Do not stop. I’m sure you’ve seen this image circulating the internet of someone digging for gold or diamond and they give up just inches before they reach their bounty. Life is a little bit like that, where we have no idea if something will work, and you might be giving up just before a big break. You have to keep at it, and keep trying because no one else will, and no one else can in the same way you can. This is yours. Reach for it. Take it.

The worst is not over yet.

Now, I’m not a pessimist but I will tell you that no matter what, shit is going to get worse. And it always does; just being real here. There is a 1% of the population who can sail through life without so much as a scratch on them. If you’re reading this, you are not the 1%. You are like me, in that 99% shit hole struggling to climb out and the rain keeps pissing down and you slip right back into the hole, covered in mud.

The point of this point (yes, I just wrote that and I’m not correcting it) is to tell you that you have to be grateful for all the things that aren’t smothered in your shit-hole’s mud. Your partner who makes you a cup of tea or coffee or brings you dinner while you’re plodding away at your computer. The squirrel running up and down the tree outside. The bank teller or cashier who smiled at you even if you were a bit stroppy. Those are the things to be grateful for.

Yes. Things are likely to get worse, and if they don’t, a genuine congratulation to you. But if they do, nothing good ever comes easy, and chiseling that wall is tiresome work. Thank the people around you, and the squirrel for making you chuckle. It will get better, one day. Until then, keep chiseling.

Now get up off your chair, stretch, and get to work because that wall ain’t gonna chisel itself.