In every endeavor that matters the long-term is involved. Anything worth doing takes 5-10 years to grow, and in that timeframe it’s easy to lose faith. To not see the path you are on when the numbers don’t work out at a specific point in time.
The stock market has a good analogy here. Paraphrasing Warren Buffett, the most prolific investor of our era, “The stock market is a tool for transferring wealth from the impatient to the patient.” Warren goes on to say that people panic when a stock they bought drops in value and often end up selling for a loss. Then after taking that loss, often times the stock goes up far beyond what the investor paid for it. There are investment firms that know this psychology and even make moves that influence stock prices to collect money from these people who aren’t patient.
Why are these people who know they should buy low and sell high often doing the opposite?
It’s panic. The availability of data and the ability to see the price at any given time become a tool for leading people to intentionally make bad decisions that don’t make any sense whatsoever. The great analogy Mr. Buffett uses is “If you bought a house, and someone immediately came by after you moved in offering you 75% of the amount you had paid, would you take it just because there was an offer?”
The answer is obviously “No.”
Yet, people panic sell their stocks during a dip.
What does this have to do with the original message?
The work we do today has more measurable data than ever before. That information that may lead you to question what you’re doing. It may lead you to question your assumptions about what will work and what won’t. You have to resist.
I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ve destroyed nearly everything by lacking patience. However, like the stock market, like anything in real life, the journey is not a nice smooth endeavor. When things dip is when your need patience and courage. You need to press on and wait for things to swing back.
P.S. There could be times where external forces lead you to have to get out. That’s okay, but is a huge topic on it’s own for another time. In this case, I’m talking about the natural ebbs and flows of our work. It can create doubt in us that shouldn’t be there.