Expectations KILL Motivations
When we expect we reject the potential for failure. And when we fail – as we all inevitably do – we are left only with disappointment. How then can we brush ourselves off and go again, when we feel so utterly dejected?
I (Yasin) have often vividly imagined all the ways in which I will spend my riches when this video goes viral or that business idea takes off. Like a chess player, I think 5 moves ahead. When I get this job, I’ll have 30k extra per year to play with so I’ll invest half of that. With the rest I’ll start going to all sorts of classes and I can treat my parents to a holiday once a year and I’ll up my fashion game and I’ll start doing this and that and the other thing. Then of course, in 5 years’ time when I’ll have my villa in Spain because the investments went so well and I’ll be a level 10 ninja with a voice to contend with Michael Jackson and Ji Jitsu skills to rival the Gracie brothers. And I’ll be walking along the promenade with my entourage when I get a call. I’ll look to see who it is and with a sigh say to my posse:
‘It’s fucking Richard Branson calling again. The guy just won’t stop calling.’
I pick up the phone.
Me: Richard, make it quick.
Richard: I just need some more business advice.
Me: Yep, I figured.
And so on and so forth.
And if I didn’t get the job, I’d be devastated. Some random recruiter was basically telling my parents that they weren’t going to get treated to holidays, that I wasn’t going to get treated to some fancy clothes and that Richard Branson wasn’t going to get that valuable business advice.
It would take me so long to pick myself up off the floor and get back into the fray.
This is particularly true of creative endeavours. Any time I put a considerable effort into making a YouTube video, this would come with an expectation of a particular result. But the problem here is that I have no control over what goes viral. The only thing I have control over is the quality of my content.
And really, am I good enough right now to make viral content? Or is that like playing the lottery?
Am I better off instead to just put my head down and get to work creating with or without the results?
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make adjustments. Tailor your art so people resonate with it but do this by becoming better, not by becoming a hack. Don’t just become another guy or gal doing the same exact thing everyone else is doing in a desperate hope to get famous.
So often we want what we don’t yet deserve. And it slows us down. Every second we spend checking metrics is a second spent not creating, a second spent not getting better. Why do we want to create more low-level trash? There is more than enough of that stuff already out there.
Don’t do this for fame. Do it for expertise. Do it for purpose. Put your head down and get to work. Stop expecting results you don’t yet deserve. Just get fucking better. Stretch yourself. Make each piece better than the last. And one day you’ll be so good they can’t ignore you.
Or, keep your expectations. Look at the likes and the views and the shares. Get disappointed. Stop creating. Wait a year. Get back on the horse. Rinse and repeat. Stay in the shallows and you’ll never get deep results.
Hope this helps.
Yasin The Good Life Guy