I think that the funny thing about finally making it is that you don’t see it coming.
See, success looks more like farming or laying bricks than it does winning the lottery.
- You don’t suddenly become a multi millionaire overnight – you work hard and buy the store for decades.
- You don’t suddenly become a successful writer – you write to nobody for ten years before you hit critical mass.
- And you don’t make it in banking at 24 – you put in the work for 15-20 years and get a little luck in the end.
You turn around one day and finally you have arrived without realizing it.
I mean, I’m just a random guy typing on the internet, so don’t take my word for it.
But this perisitance thing is kind of a big deal.
Understand: The big break is a myth.
There was a belief that one appearance on The Tonight Show made you a star. But here are the facts. The first time you do the show, nothing. The second time you do the show, nothing. The sixth time you do the show, someone might come up to you and say, “Hi, I think we met at Harry’s Christmas party.” The tenth time you do the show, you could conceivably be remembered as being seen somewhere on television. The twelfth time you do the show, you might hear, “Oh, I know you. You’re that guy.” But I didn’t know that. Before the show, as I stood in the backstage darkness behind the curtain of The Tonight Show, hearing the muffled laughter while Johnny spoke and waiting for the tap on the shoulder that would tell me I was on, an italicized sentence ticker-taped through my head: “I am about to do The Tonight Show.”
-Steve Martin, Born Standing Up (Amazon)