When you do things because they are easy or the easy way, life will be hard in the future. When you do things that are hard, life will become easy.
I remember in my early working days when I was busting ass on a Saturday. A friend of mine was giving me a hard time about working while he was on his way to Hawaii because he only worked 2 weeks a month (he was a stewardess – his words). He was flying there for free because he worked for the airlines.
I knew that I was making a short term sacrifice for a long term gain. I couldn’t afford the trip both in terms of money or time off.
A few years later, he decided not to serve cokes in the air for a living, but had wasted 15 years of working experience. I had committed to getting ahead early in my career to enjoy my time later in life. That required me to work hard when I was younger and sacrifice some things.
Now, I go where I want, when I want. I’ve long since retired and my friend is still catching up and will be working for a long time. I can afford a ticket to wherever, usually on frequent flyer points. Life is a full circle.
I’m not a fortune teller, but life is short and there is a time for work and a time to reap the rewards of that work. I knew that early and instead of living for the moment I had to work hard and sacrifice to enjoy the fruits of that labor.
We all learn lessons in life, but the are eerily similar. Few are sports stars, win the lottery or inherit their wealth. You need to work tenaciously, suffer from some hard knocks and learn from your experiences. I knew way back then that goofing off early in life when you should be building the foundation for your life was the right decision.
I decided not to rub it in with my friend now that we are on the other side of the equation. He is suffering enough and it’s just not worth it to me. The results speak for themselves.