Pursuing your dreams and goals in life is exciting. What hardly anyone mentions is that by doing this the price you may pay is loneliness.
Anyone who has spent a year or two pursing their own dream or business will most likely encounter the question of.... where did my friends go?
It may feel like they are avoiding you or maybe you have been so busy that you have neglected them. Regardless, things change drastically when you decide to invest into yourself and your business.
There is always an initial excitement and spark that floats around any new idea. Friends and family can light up, encourage, and even invest into us when the energy is high, but as we begin the journey up the mountain we quickly realize that we're the only ones who are building the endurance, who are training to get to the top, who will actually have to fight, strive, and carry the load from basecamp up to the summit.
The summit is the highest point on a mountain. It's a surface of high elevation, a place that only few reach and all those that once wished us well now look like ants or are completely invisible as you rise above the clouds to this peak.
To reach your own goals and dreams requires you to travel a lonely road. When everyone else is going out, you're staying in. When everyone else is spending money, you're figuring out how to invest more money, when everyone tells you to lighten up or just cut lose, you're doubling down and reinforcing your stability.
Anyone who has been on the journey for a few years will hit a point when you feel lonely, all alone, in the wilderness. The more you travel higher and higher it seems like people begin to drop off, they get tired, they turn back, they didn't pack enough supplies, the elements are too harsh, the old way seems easier.
Maybe you have encountered a drop off in attention from friends and family. You started something online, and the first post gets 100 likes, then the next post gets 67, then the next post gets 13, then the next post gets 3.
It gets lonely fast.
Soon you're just another one of those entrepreneurs chasing a dream. A cute idea.
If you're going to puruse your dreams you have to know that the journey to success is going to be one long lonely road. There are so many times I pass on things because I want to spend more time improving my craft. There are times when I pass on vacations, concerts, events, so I can invest into my gear so I can give my clients a better end product. All of these things require sacrifice and often put you on a road less traveled.
This lonely road however has lots of benefits. It will quickly show you who you are. You will learn your strengths and weaknesses within the first mile. If you're willing to endure this road you will learn more about yourself, which is ultimately one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself. Instead of spending time and resources hanging out at basecamp and talking about climbing the mountain, you get the satisfaction of actually doing it.
All of this allows you to really find out what you're made of. It helps you learn how to be the best version of yourself. The lonely road is a road of solitude and peace. It's a road thats not full of chatter. If you run into someone else on the road, they usually make for a great partner to go the distance with. They will be far more valuable then the thirty people back at the start because they will journey with you.
Sacrifices are necessary to create a lifestyle that you love. Sacrifices are necessary if you want to really learn who you are. When you begin on this road just remember that you will encounter loneliness. I am currently writing this from a baby's bedroom while others watch a movie. It's just me and some stuffed animals, but I wouldn't have it any other way because this lonely road has made me a better human, a better worker, a better husband, and most of all, I love who I am becoming as a person.
Don't let the lonely road get you down. The summit is just up ahead.