Screw The Shortcut

Late in 2015, I was approached by a publishing company to write my first book. There was a cost investment on my end that would cover the editing, formatting, cover design and promotion. The publisher promised me that they would make my book a best seller on Amazon so that I could claim best seller status.

The allure of writing a book was something I had thought about for awhile. I knew that if this was what it took for me to finally write it, that the cost investment would be worth it.

True to their word, the company did push me to best seller status but the way they did it hasn’t set well with me since it happened.

In the wee hours of the night when my book was released, the publisher drove the cost of my book down to a penny, stuck it into a category in Amazon where it did not belong, and “purchased” several copies of the book so that I could momentarily hit the number 1 spot and claim my book as a bestseller.

Was it misleading? You bet.

Even now, some six years later, I think about my “best-selling” first book and it still leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

It reminds me of the attraction we have to shortcuts. We’re drawn to hacks and we’re drawn to quick fixes.

All of the things of value in my life: my marriage, my time with my children, and my business have found their respective success through a tremendous amount of effort, adversity, and time to make them the best they can be. I had no shortcuts, I had no hacks, there was no overnight success.

If you apply this to your own life, your professional trajectory, your relationships and what you might hope to accomplish for your body take considerable effort and sweat equity.

You will frequently have to do uncomfortable things, at less than ideal times, and when you’re not always feeling the mojo. It doesn’t matter. The work still has to be done.

You are here. Your goals, are over…………………………………………………….there.

The shortcuts to the goal, even if they work, are rarely worth it.

Put in the time, put in the effort, celebrate the wins often, and keep pushing to improve.

My second book, thankfully, sold much better than my first but it was an altogether different project. My pride in seeing that book sell well without resorting to any devious tactics will always be the route I prefer.

As a matter of fact, all of those things of value in my life that I took the longer, more arduous path to experience have made my life the better for it.

And I want that for you, too.

(Photo courtesy of Fallon Michael on Unsplash)