I lost most of my social media FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) after reading Adam Poswolsky's The Quarter-Life Breakthrough. Poswolsky (or Smiley, as he goes by) points out that much of the things we see in the front of the house of someone's success rarely accounts all of the work it took for them to get there; no matter how instant it may look.
While you're plugging away at your school work, project, or business idea it looks like everyone around you is already achieving, already enjoying, all ready winning. And you...well you've got barely any support for your idea, your grades aren't exactly killing it, oh and your broke. This stuff is hard.
On a good day we get it.
Success isn't overnight. Slow and steady wins the race, etc, etc. But this sentiment alone will not always keep you from doubting your path or wondering what's wrong with you, or why your mom is the only one sharing your content. Again...this stuff is hard.
I guarantee you, with few exceptions, all of the folks that you're gawking over on social media passed through this trial; wondering if their idea would work or if they were pursuing the right goal in the first place. They too knew the frustration and tears that come with feeling like you've hit a dead end or that failure is impending and public embarrassment is certain.
Recently I changed jobs.
While still in academia I've entered the field of international education to hone my skills in this area, while supporting students in their choice to study abroad, and grow my knowledge base for my Leaders of the Free World project.
Most days are exciting. I feel I'm connecting to my purpose, pursuing my dreams, and making things happen. I feel all love and support from the folks who continue to invest in my project and invest in me. But some days I get bummed. I feel discouraged about not hitting specific targets. I worry about our reach or engagement levels. I stress about our limited capacity. I...have...doubts.
This is difficult to admit, because we want people to assume this stuff comes easy to us; that every day we're winning, and we're just one viral video, one endorsement, one major break away from the thing that's going to make it all ok and solve our problems.
That's not how any of this works.
I lost my social media FOMO when I understood the same things you're currently experiencing:
THIS STUFF IS HARD. And it's only in actually doing the work (and continuing to do the work) that you experience and understand this for yourself. I know folks who've made huge sacrifices to pursue their dreams; dealing with uncertainty that would keep most of us lying awake at night in a cold sweat. I've seen them push themselves to the absolute limit or leave no other option but success in order to realize their dreams. And while I'm not glorifying, workaholism, I am acknowledging the hustle, fortitude, and drive that goes in to their journey.
Like a bodybuilder in the gym, each small win comes from a willingness to endure the discomfort again and again; grow a little more, and endure even more because they are committed to the results.
Leave your comments below and tell let us why. You can also head over to our Facebook page.
Know someone who could use this advice? Forward it on to them.
Do you want to know how you or your team could be Directing Your Purpose, contact me. Don't forget to sign-up for my mailing list. You can also follow me on Facebook Twitter and Instagram.