Learn From Your Mistakes If You Want to Find Your Version of Success
It is possible to build a business or career despite hurdles and challenges like a mental or physical illness
I would blame my failure to stay focused this past week on the election, but the deeper I overthink the mystery, the more I see it’s the nature of who I have been in life that threw me for a loop.
I tend to jump from one thing to another, which has been a significant problem for me.
Take the last week, for instance.
Do you notice that I often write about my mental health? It is only because my illness’s severity keeps it top of mind. Here I am writing a book during NaNoWriMo about blogging by finishing an essay or article per day. More often than not, I’m writing about how illness makes it difficult to complete anything.
I intended to have a central theme where I would talk about the business of blogging and create a timeline that lasted two months through the end of December 2020. It would outline the rise or fall of my writing and blogging business as I push myself to find the success that eludes me.
But I find I want to talk more to the many people who follow me for one specific reason.
Many of you are so much like me that it’s scary. You battle illness daily, whether it be the horror of diabetes or the pain and fear you get from depression and anxiety. I have people who write to me with PTSD and OCD, which are debilitating, and they find writing almost an impossibility.
I find I want to talk more about building a writing or blogging business when you have too many challenges to mention. What about those who have to push themselves to produce and have to somehow find a way to focus when demons are dancing on their Medulla Oblongata?
I am figuring out that a more interesting book I could write would exist to help people with mental or physical challenges build a business and find success, whatever our definition of that word is.
The problem is that I jump from thing to thing, and I don’t want to waste any more of my valuable time spinning my wheels if I can help it. I’ve learned that if I want to be successful at anything, I have to stick with one thing and focus.
Why am I like this?
I’ve struggled my entire life to find success. I don’t want to blame my failure only on my mental difficulties because there are other issues at work in my life. I grew up in a religious household that didn’t plan for the future because the world was going to end. I also had to come to terms with an addictive personality when it came to drugs and alcohol.
I was naive and wishy-washy. I jumped from one idea to the next, never stopping to explore anything I started in a more profound way. As a multipotentialite, I was a jack-of-all-trades, master of none, and an idea man, but I didn’t have follow-thru, which hurt me.
I’ve started a hundred different businesses, blogs, and ideas and pulled the plug on all of them — until now.
For the past two years, I’ve been juggling my writing, illness, family, and responsibilities and so far have found some success. I attribute this to sticking with one thing and making it work. Writing on Medium has been a constant for me, even if I have still been running around also creating publications, blogs, websites, and newsletters.
It’s hard to break old habits.
What is your story? Why haven’t you found a version of success that leaves you feeling fulfilled? The first step to making headway towards your goals is recognizing what has held you back in the past.
It’s like the often-misattributed Einstein quote:
“Insanity Is Doing the Same Thing Over and Over Again and Expecting Different Results” — not Einstein
We will never get anywhere in life if we don’t adjust the way we do things and start doing the things that work. I burn out quickly, but it’s not that I work too hard, but because I try to work on too many things, and I have no focus.
If I keep doing things that way, I’m bound to continue my losing streak, right?
What have you been doing that is holding you back? Have you wrongly thought you can’t build a business or career because you don’t have the right education, experience, or money? Do you spend your life, time, and money frivolously and never get serious enough about a business or career to find your stride?
And the biggest one — do you use your illness as the main reason you never do anything with your life? Don’t get upset. I can say that because it’s what I did my whole life. I assumed because my mental illness was so severe that I would never amount to anything.
If I had listened to the voices in my head, naysayers, and doctors who didn’t believe in me, I would have settled down into a life of suicide attempts and hospitalizations — or a life of psychosis and breakdowns.
But I didn’t. Even when I was struggling, I wanted more. Even if I was doing the wrong things, I tried to find my version of success despite the voices in my head and the scars on my body.
I knew I would stumble on the right combination of resources, ideas, and events that would put me moving forward on the right path, and I did.
You will also learn from your past mistakes and failures and work to be better and smarter every day.
Don’t think I’m blowing fairy-dust up your ass when I say that you can find your version of success. I say your version because everyone looks at success in a different way. Some want money, some fame. Some want to be better writers, and some want their name on a book.
Some people want a happy family and life. Some want it all.
You have to figure out what you want in life. I want to make more money, so I can enjoy the essential things in life, like family, without worrying if I can pay my bills this month.
Define your version of success and step on the path to get you there in the quickest way possible. Forget about the mistakes of the past and move forward.
Success is out there, and you will find it if you learn from your mistakes.