I wasn’t born with grit, but I have learned to cultivate it.
As a kid, I used to give up on things whenever they got hard. Ballet. Gymnastics. Iceskating. Even in the early days of entrepreneurship, I used to want to give up on my business every six months or so. At first sign of any setback or challenge I would throw my hands up and head to LinkedIn to look for a stable job. But then one of my business mentors, Brooke Castillo, said something that changed my life. She said there is no better feeling than working through discomfort and making yourself proud (great podcast episode on this topic linked here). It was such a simple concept, but something inside of me shifted when I heard it. I became sold on making myself proud. Here’s what helped me get there:
Picture the Finish Line
In order to stick with something, it’s imperative that you envision the finish line. Picture the specific result you want and flush out all of the details until it feels vivid and exciting and real. Write it down. Daydream about it. Tell people you trust. Imagine how you will feel when you get there. Believe me, I never would have been able to spend six months of my life waking up at the crack of dawn to write my first manuscript if I hadn’t first fully cultivated my dream of becoming a published author.
Get Comfortable With Discomfort
Discomfort is a tough sell, but fully required for any form of true growth or evolution to happen. I’ve learned to expect and embrace discomfort whenever I go after a new goal. Knowing that you are capable of navigating through tough emotions like anxiety or self-doubt – or even panic – is wildly empowering. Trust me, I still feel like I might pass out before a big public speaking gig, but I’ve experienced discomfort enough times now to trust that it will pass and I will be better for it.
If you’re used to avoiding discomfort like the plague, start super small and work your way up to larger challenges. If you dream of starting a business, challenge yourself to write a business plan. If you want to run a marathon, start with a quick morning jog. If you want to become a more organized person, practice not losing your keys. You get the picture.
P.S. Writing and publishing a book was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but also one of the most rewarding. If you’ve ever even daydreamed about what it would be like to have your own work in print, I’m co-hosting a book publishing workshop with the wildly talented author, designer, and illustrator Audrey Smit. We’ll be breaking down every thing you need to know about the publishing world and answering all of your questions live (replay available). You can enroll RIGHT HERE. Xx
Photography Credit: Vivian Johnson