overcoming difficulties

Today, I read an article written by Jim Butcher, the author of the Harry Dresden series. He titled the article, “The Most Important Thing an Aspiring Author Needs to Know“.

What does he suggest is the most important thing?

“There Ain’t No Free Lunch.”

We’ve all heard some version of what he wrote. “Nothing worth doing is easy. Nothing worth having comes free.”

We may all nod our heads when we hear that. But even if we say we know that is true, we still want things to be easy. At least a whole lot easier than they are.

When things are hard, we complain. We whine. Out loud or just in our minds. We resist the challenges. We want to know why life, our job, our day have to be so difficult or frustrating. We may blame our parents, our boss, our politicians, or God. Maybe we blame ourselves.

Too often, we put our energy into avoiding the difficulties, rather than applying that same energy to develop the strength and skills to climb over and rise above the challenges.

Jim wrote, the vast majority of aspiring authors (somewhere over 99 percent) self-terminate their dream. They quit. Think about this for a minute, because it’s important:


Why do they kill their dream?

Because they decide they’d rather give up on the dream of being an author than deal with the self-doubt and rejection that all authors face.

Bucher wrote, “*NO ONE* can take your dream away.

No one but you.

If you want it, you have to get it. You.”

“If you want to climb that hill, the only way to do it is to make yourself do it, one foot in front of another, one word after another. It will probably be the greatest challenge most of you have ever faced.

And here’s the kicker: THAT IS A VERY GOOD THING.”

It’s a good thing because by overcoming that adversity you become stronger, more disciplined, more confident, more professional, and more capable.

He wrote, “The true reward of breaking into the industry against all the odds isn’t money. It isn’t fame. It it isn’t respect.

It’s you.”

This is true for reaching toward any dream that requires a long, hard struggle. 

Don’t curse the struggle. Don’t wish your dream came faster and easier. And definitely don’t give up just because it’s hard.

Instead, change your perspective. The difficulty is not simply the admission cost for your dream. It’s also a gift. One that can transform you. It will help you grow, learn, and become a stronger and more capable person. It will help you become the kind of person who not only obtains your dream but also lives more fully in that dream.

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