February 22, 2015. I remember it like it was yesterday. I’ll never, as long as I live, forget it. It was the worst day of my life.
Just a couple months before this terrible day, I was struggling. I vividly remember reading my vision statement out loud and for some reason, I was flooded with anxiety and panic for my 40th birthday….huh? I was only 27 at the time. Far from 40.
So what is it that filled me with this panic? I think 40 has always seemed so far away and for some reason, it felt a lot closer than it ever has for me. I started thinking deeply about my parents and where they both were at the age of 40, in terms of success, family, money, and basically everything else. I felt tons of self-doubt. I felt vulnerable. I felt like quitting. I felt that there was a possibility of not achieving everything that I wanted to and was starting to conclude that I was a failure.
You see, when I was young (really young) I always knew I would be successful, wealthy and happy. I still know this, but that doesn’t mean I can clearly see the path every day. I’d say there is a moment, in every day, where I question my trajectory. I wonder if taking a safer and more comfortable career path would have been the “smart” thing to do.
Maybe it would’ve been. I certainly would’ve had less heartbreaking losses. I would certainly have less “failures” on my rap sheet. Make no mistake, I have struggled, probably more than anyone I know. I have taken a LOT of professional risks. I have spent virtually my entire career in either 100% commissioned sales or in startup/entrepreneurial ventures, where (most) of them had absolutely no guarantee of being paid, whatsoever.
Some of them paid me. Most of them didn’t.
I have been broke. I have been broker than broke. I’ve been beyond broke. I know what it is like to have a business fail. I know what it’s like to bounce back, only to fail again. Miserably. I know what it is like to pour your heart and soul into something and get absolutely no traction.
One thing I’ve come to realize is that the struggles and defeats are necessary. I mean that. Everyone who has done something incredible has endured defeat. They have hit a low point. They have failed. But, they have picked themselves up off the canvas and continued to fight.
Everyone has a moment in their life where everyone would understand why they quit. The question is, when you come to that point in your life, what are you going to do about it?
I have never given up on the image I have in my head of who I know I will one day be, but today, I am not that man yet, and I’m okay with that. I am better today than I was yesterday.
That’s all that matters to me and that’s all that ever will.
On February 22nd, 2015 I had the worst day of my life. I had my biggest failure of all time. I was faced with a very important decision that day. Give up, or get up.
That was the birth of Relentless Forward Momentum. Just one year after the worst day of my life, I officially launched my book. It was an emotional day, to say the least.
I always remind myself that if I had decided to give up, you wouldn’t be reading this right now. I’m proud of that. I took a negative situation and made it a positive one. You can do the same.
There are so many things that “happen” to you in life. So many things that are unfair. But, you always have control of your response. Always. Nothing can EVER defeat you if you believe that.
So what type of person are you? Are you the type that panics and wonders if they should just give up? Listen, I get it. I’ve been there. I understand how powerful those feelings can be, but you can’t give up. You can’t quit. You have to keep fighting. There is so much out there that you will never experience if you quit now.
I find comfort in embracing the defeats, the struggles and even the failures. If you expect to never have a bad day again, you won’t be prepared to deal with one. That doesn’t mean you plan for failure. You deal with it. You roll with the punches.
Remember that you grow when you are challenged. You grow most on the tough days. Every time you decide to keep fighting, when others would quit, you gain strength and momentum.
You will experience self-doubt again. I promise you that. But, who cares? To overcome these intense feelings you have to fight. You have to work hard to develop a crystal-clear vision of who you want to be. You have to work hard to master your habits. You have to grind and hustle harder than everyone else. Most importantly, you have to believe in yourself. All success begins with an unwavering belief in yourself.
Sometimes, it takes an emotional experience, or a really, REALLY tough day to discover it. Be grateful for your tough days. February 22, 2015 was NOT the worst day of my life. In fact, I constantly consider it the BEST DAY OF MY LIFE. Seriously. It changed my trajectory. It recalibrated my focus. It led me to where I am today.
I truly believe that you can always profit from your losses. You can always turn a failure into a victory. You can always fight a little bit harder.
And, it’s never too late to become a winner.
— This one is for all the fighters out there. Keep scrapping. Keep fighting. Keep victory in your sights. I’ll always, be in your corner.