Eighteen months ago, I was burned out. Like many entrepreneurs before me, I was exhausted from the weight of wearing so many hats. I can remember vividly wondering why the hell there were so many repeat founders. Why would you ever subject yourself to this again and again?
Then, a few weeks ago, I read this quote from Sigmund Freud:
“One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful.”
Now I understand!
The most meaningful things in life are often the hardest. Actually, life itself is more meaningful when it is hard. Those challenges sharpen us, push us, force us to go beyond our self-imposed boundaries. And, of course, we don’t appreciate these teachings while we’re in the middle of them. But when we come out the other end, we realize we wouldn’t have become better people without them.
I remember experiencing this as an overwhelmed and cranky new parent. I would ask my parents how they dealt with the sleepless nights, the crying and the 24/7 responsibility. They’d sort of smile and say, “Oh, I don’t know. It just sort of worked out.” What does that mean?!?!
It means, like so much of what we endlessly worry about, that it worked out, as it often does. And they don’t remember all of those struggles because, in retrospect, those struggles were some of the greatest moments of their lives.
And they will be for you too.
So here’s to the struggle!
Don’t worry so much about the outcome, because the mere fact that we’re fighting every day means that we’re winning. And, one day, we’ll look back on these as the good old days!
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