My newfound success it not what it’s cracked up to be – it never is. In some ways, it can be a curse. Ever since I broke out on the internet as a viral blogger, my life has never been the same. I’m humbled by the experience, but want to use it to help the world more than anything.
It’s so hard to tell you what it’s like until you experience it for yourself. When you mix your dream with passion, love, determination and enthusiasm altogether in a blender, what you get is the best tasting smoothie you could ever imagine. Becoming extraordinary is phenomenal.
Unfortunately, you do get a side of slightly off yogurt with it.
For those who have yet to experience success, here are some of the challenges with becoming extraordinary:
1. Lots of coffee catch-ups
A day doesn’t pass by without multiple requests to catch up for coffee. In the beginning, this was fun; now it’s a constant struggle. If you say yes to every coffee catch up you never get time to be alone with your thoughts.
You never get time to think up the extraordinary. You never get to focus on your goal to change the world. Many times, people just want to have coffee with you to tell their friends and colleagues that they know you, or even worse, to get a selfie with you.
Even stranger is that I actually don’t drink coffee, so the thought doesn’t wow me. A super food lunch on the other hand, is a little bit harder to say no to.
Before you say yes to a coffee catch up, ensure that you have the time, are enthusiastic about it and there is a mutual benefit to both sides. If not, abandon ship.
2. Expectations to perform
The curse of being extraordinary is that there is this constant expectation for you to perform. Somehow people think you have a magic wand and everyone wants to have a go. Whatever you touch should turn to gold, but it never does. The truth is that extraordinary people have more flops than successes.
“What makes extraordinary people the way they are, are the 0.01% of times they succeed”
It’s the fact that they’re willing to risk so much for those few highlights that normal people mistakenly believe is someone’s entire life.
Those moments are just the highlight reel of a long run of stuff ups, disappointments and failures. I’ve had so many rock bottom moments, sad times and failures that this little bit of success I have now is the reward for so many bad debts in the past.
3. Decision fatigue
Being extraordinary means more of everything. More invitations, more friends, more expectations, more events to attend, more chances to speak, more job offers and more chances to start businesses. I’ve experienced all of these over the past couple of years. I’m grateful, but the curse at the same time is that it creates decision fatigue.
You have so many big and small decisions to make at one time that your head gets clogged up. There’s no free space to think about the things that make you extraordinary in the first place. Having a lot of decisions to make is not as fun as you may think. It’s both a blessing and a curse sometimes. Such is life.
4. Notification overload
If I log in to any one of my social media accounts right now, I’m going to have a ridiculous number of notifications and messages to fill my brain up with dopamine like an overflowing fondue fountain. The temptation to consistently check social media is hard to ignore – especially when it’s full of compliments about what you do and who you’ve become.
Consuming notifications takes you away from having the time to create the very content that those notifications stem from in the first place. Being only one person, with no team, means I have to only notice some of what goes on. I do my best to reply but sometimes it’s impossible.
I want you to know that it’s okay not to see everything on the internet with your name on it. You can’t see every moment. What you can do is appreciate these moments though. Not everyone is so blessed.
5. You’re expected to post on social media constantly
If I didn’t post an article like this on social media for a week, then people would think I’ve gone rogue. This has happened before when I’ve gone away on holiday. My thoughts about this are to post when you can.
“You don’t need to be “ON” 24/7”
Taking a break sometimes is the best way to find new ways to become extraordinary. It’s the silence between the different pursuits you have in life that create the epic moments of success, and in my case, viral blog posts.
6. People assume you don’t have stuff ups
Hahahaha……if only you knew. Actually, you do because I post about it all the time. In case you have forgotten, extraordinary people have so many stuff ups that they can’t even name them all. The stuff ups give you the muscle to execute when the odds are against you.
The stuff ups give you courage like a coat of armor that a warrior wears. Learning to appreciate the stuff ups is the hardest part. These celebrities you follow claim they do although I know for a fact that many of them don’t.
Sometimes people think I just woke up one day and was lucky enough to get published on a blog that went on to have a cult following. This is not what happened to me at all. I tried many creative pursuits that failed beforehand- mostly music related.
I tried for a long time to be on the top of iTunes. I never even got close. All of those attempts then culminated in me using a different way to evoke emotion in people. The failure caused me to find another way to do the same thing. Blogging was the channel. I didn’t choose it and I didn’t even know. It happened by accident.
“It was a science experiment gone wrong. Success often is”
The purpose of this post is to show you the other side of being extraordinary or successful. Too often we only see the upside and not always the downside. This post is not a message to the world which says don’t be extraordinary; it’s a warning of what to expect.
Go out there and change the world. Make your dreams come true.