“Overnight success” is often the result of years of work we didn’t see, so how long does it actually take to get to where you want to be?
Keep doing it. I didn’t know when I started painting ten years ago I would be a full-time painter right now. It’s shocking the amount of struggle I had for ten years. I wouldn’t wish that time period on any living soul. But the reward at the end justified the means of creating and starting.
That experience, you can’t put a bow on it and give it to someone. You can give them inspirational videos on YouTube. People want to be inspired. But what they don’t see is the amount of time that’s put in, that in-between time, that void, that experience. There are a lot of moments in that space where you’re broken down and don’t want to do anything creative ever again in your life. And then that passes and you start creating again.
So you don’t know where you’re going to start and end up, but if you keep doing something you’re passionate about, the roads will be found. And the avenues to continue to do what you’re passionate about will materialize. But you will have years and years and years of experience to get to that point. That’s life.
Over time, getting older and coming to a realization about what it takes to accomplish something, you’re like, Okay, it’s not going to be easy and it’s not going to happen immediately. So I think once I learned that lesson and started doing things that were really hard for me and making progress, I realized that you can really do anything. I think first it was skating. You start to make some progress and you’re like, Oh man, this is getting better. And it just gets more fun as you get better. Same with music. At first you’re strumming on any chords, it’s all you know, and then all of a sudden it just evolves as you keep doing it.
I think if you’re working towards something, somehow you do what’s necessary. It’s almost like a funnel and these different things kind of filter you right out to where you need to be. But you have to take the steps to get into that funnel, you know?[Snowboarding] was the only thing on my mind since I first saw a snowboard. I think you can tell that a lot of the time in people, whether they have devoted themselves to something or not.
It was only three years ago that I actually started seeing any kind of financial gain after all the years I put in and all the leg work, like paying for a website each year, getting a new logo. So this being the 10th year, I’m actually somewhat comfortable with what I’m doing and making enough to not be struggling. I have my family and stuff so not being worried like, Oh my god, what if I don’t get this job that I applied for and someone else gets it?
Just putting in the work, the grind. The hours are what really matters.