The path to success always requires a stop in hell

The most valuable asset in business & life is momentum. The hardest thing in the world is starting:
- Starting a business
- Starting to workout and eat better
- Starting a new career
- Starting in a new city
- Starting a new relationship

All these things are royal PITAs. The hard part of building & keeping momentum is you don’t actually know whether you’ll make it out on the other side.

The defaul perspective we all have is that the successul person knew they entire time that they were going to make it. Sure they struggled, but the outcome was inevitable. They *knew* they were going to conqour.

But that’s just not true. It’s never true. Anyone who tells you otherwise has selective memory at best and is lying at worst.

England in 1940 - Winston Churchill had no idea what was about to happen. The US showed no signs of entering the war and Germany was a mere 25 miles away.

Worst still, the retreat at Dunkirk had proved that even the most basic boats could cross the English channel with soliders, i.e. if England could retreat, Germany could attack.

The entire nation was on edge, 1,000 years of history behind it, believing a German invasion was about to come.

Think - I mean really stop and think - what did Churchill believe in those moments? Did he “know” England was going to prevail? Could he have certainty that Nazi Germany wasn’t about to take over all of Europe?

No. The answer is absolutely no.

When you’re in hell, the trick is to remember that every successful person you’ve ever met also went through it . There’s no path *but* through hell. The required stop in hell is usually what makes the destination valuable in the first place.

All the greats go through this. They all doubt themselves. They all have their inner demons, their mental monologues, their wonderings if they’re going to make it.

The greats are not somehow different, or predetermined. They just kept doing their thing, and sometimes that’s enough for it all to work out in the end.

So if you’re in a moment of despair, whether that’s in your personal life, your startup, whatever - remember how normal it is, and that no one knows in the moment whether they’re going to make it.

That we forget this makes the success stories all the more interesting and worth studying.

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