The cancer of bigger, better and faster.
I don’t want to get into the nitty-gritty. But, it’s been roughly two years since I got paid to write my first word and I’m now running a six-figure creative writing business.
It’s not Elon’s spaceship.
It’s not Oprah’s spaceship.
It’s not Jobs’s spaceship.
But, it’s my spaceship.
It’s little. It’s a bit rickety. But, it can really jolt when I hit the gas and it’s painted a pretty mint green, too.
Perhaps, it’s more like a space pod than a spaceship. But, none of that fucking matters, because it’s mine and I am damn proud of it.
From a business standpoint, I’m the most fulfilled I’ve ever been. But, to get here, it took me taking a step back from the typical silicon valley mindset that has seemed to permeate every ambitious mind in the country — build a spaceship and shoot for the moon.
Today, we are surrounded by growth.
Everything is growing and if it’s not growing, it is seen as a failure.
And, while to a certain extent growth is good… eventually, we have to ask ourselves when growth can get out of control?
When growth can go from life-giving to life-taking like cancer?
I think a big reason entrepreneurs, marketers and young professionals are so dissatisfied with their work today is because they feel as though if they’re not 10xing year over year they’re failing.
I’ll say it again. That’s bullshit.
Since when is running a profitable business that grows at a modest rate year over year seen as a failure?
I’m not the only one asking this question. Far smarter people than myself are, too.
Books like Company of One by Paul Jarvis are showing us that it’s okay to not feel called to build the next Tesla.
And, books like The Million-Dollar, One-Person Business, are showing us that this mentality can still be extremely lucrative.
Gumroad’s CEO & founder wrote a beautiful piece reflecting on his failure to build a billion-dollar company.
In it, he highlights challenges the Elon Musk’s of the world don’t share like… laying off close friends because you’re running out of money.
I’ve written about Gumroad before. It, in my opinion, is one of the strongest niche brands alive today.
Not to mention, it has a splendid mission — to help creators around the world get paid doing what they love.
I adore it so much, I used it to launch my copywriting guide — how to write words that sell like a Florida Snow Cone Vendor on the hottest day of the year.
Yet, despite this, Gumroad’s founder still viewed himself as a failure for a long time, because it wasn’t a billion-dollar spaceship.
And, I might be assuming (you know what they say about assuming)… but I imagine there have been times you have viewed yourself as a failure too.