Ever since people can share their lives online, most of the stuff we tend to see shows people living amazing lives.
It's even more so the case with successful people. There's a particular interesting phenomenon with successful people. Or successful companies. Or successful whatever.
The moment we discover them, the moment we find out about them usually happens all of a sudden. All of a sudden they tend to be everywhere.
They're on the news, in magazines, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Quora and in your e-mail inbox. It's like an overnight success explosion.
And that's where our brains tend to trick us into believing that the moment we found out about these folks or companies is the moment they started working on their stuff. That's never true.
What happens before the overnight success explosion, before we find out about them are many years of hard work. Many years of getting there. Many years of getting ready for that one overnight success explosion that will change everything. Many years of working hard at a dark and lonely place. With no one noticing.
For many years the founders of AirBnB were traveling across the country trying to figure out how to best sell their idea to home owners and then how to sell it to people willing to rent these homes. They met hundreds of people individually. In the beginning they even took the pictures of all the places they listed themselves.
And one day, one magic day AirBnB was everywhere. Everyone was talking about it. And nobody knew how much work, how many years were put into getting ready for that one magic moment. For that overnight success explosion. No one knew how many hands they had to shake to get there.
When Bill Gates was a kid, his school had one of the few computers who shared their computing power with much larger computers. So he wasn't slowed down by the punch card process like many others. He had unlimited access to these computers for many years before everybody else. This helped him to get ready for his “overnight success”. To sharpen his skills a lot faster than anybody else.
Coolio, a rapper who became famous almost over night with a song called Gangster's Paradise wrote songs for 17 years, every day, before he was able to celebrate his “overnight success”. Before that no one even knew he existed. That's how long it took him to have just one hit.
So whenever you see someone successful or find out about someone who seems to be living an amazing life don't fool yourself. Don't fool yourself into believing that the moment you find out about these people or these companies is the moment they started working on it.
The moment you find out about them is usually the moment when everything else already happened. When the hard work was already done. When the masses were already reached. And reaching the masses is a very tiresome process and takes many, many years. And many hands to shake.
It's a process hidden to most of us. A process we usually don't see. So we tend to ignore that process.
And that's why we tend to believe in overnight success. We tend to fall into the trap that we just have to think about a good idea and we'll get rich quick. And live an amazing life.
But the truth is that the only thing that might ever enable you to live an amazing life is to take action. To work hard. And to never give up.
Intentions won't get you anywhere. Only action might get you somewhere..
Read More: The 25 Rules for Being an Entrepreneur