Success p*rn is everywhere. *Sighs*
It’s nice to hear about what didn’t work. I wish we could normalize that so reaching a goal is a journey more people can copy. Instead, success bros pretend on social media that everything they touch turns to gold.
Would love for sharing losses to become a trend.
I’ll start. Here are my biggest losses of the last twelve months.
Losing a lot of money
Last year I made some dumb mistakes with crypto.
I invested too heavily into certain projects. I kept much of my crypto in one place which led to security issues. When prices went crazy I found myself on the phone with friends talking like a coke addict.
The excitement of markets really got the best of me.
Instead of sticking to Bitcoin and Ethereum (sound advice), I went too far out on the risk spectrum and got my face ripped off. Thankfully, the bulk of my investing still stayed with Bitcoin and Ethereum though.
Twitter is amazing opportunity for content creators.
I led the charge a few months back and started to go heavy down the rabbit hole. It paid off but at the cost of my dopamine levels.
The temptation to stupidly refresh stats pages multiple times a day and keep checking notifications got to me. I deleted Twitter off my phone again to detox.
Email punched me in the face too.
I wasn’t as disciplined with only checking email at certain times of the day. At the end of a long writing day my depleted dopamine levels robbed me of some of the enjoyment you get from a hard day’s work. Lesson learned.
Burnout struck a few months back. I wrote about it.
It’s easy to go from hustling to hit your career goals to overdoing it. The burn of the late nights crept up on me. Before I knew it my energy levels fell off a cliff. I tried to keep going with 0% battery. Failed.
Time off cured the obsession. Hustle culture is everywhere so try not to get sucked in by its bullsh*t.
Time off equals 10X more creativity.
Pissing off a mentor
Mentors are great … until they ask for one too many favors.
One mentor did this to me. They kept asking me for stuff. They overloaded my inbox. So, I took some time away. They got pissed off. They stopped replying to my messages. They said certain nasty things that found their way back to me. I felt terrible.
Advice is nice until it comes with hidden favors.
Didn’t handle negative press well
When you build a decent-sized audience online you’ll attract your fair share of critics. A few people took the piss and threw my name in headlines. I could have handled it better. I should have flagged the posts with the platform owners.
I should have perhaps seen some of the negative feedback as areas for improvement. Yet I didn’t. I ignored it and things got way out of hand.
If I had my time again I would have blocked the ones that purposely made my day a living hell, rather than try to be fair and let them keep spamming my newsfeeds out of a fake sense of compassion. Lesson learned.
Doing everything myself
Some of the work I do each day should be outsourced.
I struggle to let go of creative work because I deeply care about what I put out into the world. By typing every email and comment myself no matter the consequence, I trade valuable time that could be spent writing.
In the next year I need to learn how to collaborate, partner, and outsource better. Otherwise, solopreneurship can eat a person alive.
Let my ego take over and light rainforests on fire
Sometimes a little ego can be healthy.
Most of the time our ego is the enemy, as Ryan Holiday famously put it.
In the last few months I’ve let real estate agents get to me. I don’t like their profession. Instead of limiting my contact with them, I let one agent do my head in.
I retaliated with some rude preaching sessions where I outlined how the real estate market has had it too good for too long and the economic data clearly shows it can’t continue forever.
The 2008 recession is just too far back in history for anybody to remember. Not for me.
Realistically that was a dumb thing to do.
No point educating people who won’t listen to you. No point letting your ego force you to try and be smarter than others.
No one likes a lecture. It’s why the college sales pitch is dying.
In our losses lie our future potential. Admit your losses to yourself.
Dare to share them online if you want radical accountability. Share them in the comments of this article if you’re game. I’d love to know I’m not alone with these common losses. Maybe I am.