And yet the real success goes to those who obsess. A woodpecker can tap twenty times on a thousand trees and get nowhere, but stay busy. Or he can tap twenty-thousand times on one tree and get dinner ~ Seth Godin

I read a recent interview with Ruby Rose where she said that every overnight success takes around 15 years and hers was 15 years to the day.

It’s funny because even though I know intellectually that success takes sustained effort, I have fallen into the trap of thinking overnight results were possible more than once.

Just one glance at my Facebook feed tells me I’m not the only one. Whether you want to manifest a lottery win or conjure up a million dollar business within months, you will find someone willing to sell you the secret.

Our culture fuels the expectation that if you can just find the magic formula you too can be an overnight sensation making megabucks every year.

The problem with this mindset is that it can lead to a loss of hope when you find out you were sold a bunch of horse shit even when deep down, you suspected the truth all along.

There have been times when I’ve despaired over my failure to achieve certain goals because my expectations were not even close to reality. Like the time I went freelancing as a magazine writer and thought Vogue might come calling before I had a single credit to my name.

Since then I’ve learned to look out for small miracles instead of big wins. The tiniest indication that energy is starting to expand, shift and flow in the right direction.

Like a note from a client thanking me for our work

A call from a contact asking if I would like to collaborate

The email thanking me for a blog post I’d written

None of these things add up to major big-time success but they remind me of the reality.

That success is not about one amazing marketing strategy but a series of consistent actions.

Success is sticking with the game plan even when the results aren’t in yet.

Or having the courage to try new things if the old ones aren’t working.

Above all, success should feel good before it arrives even when that pot at the end of the rainbow is still a way off.

If you’re doing work you love and taking actions that feel right for you, then you should know that one day you can and will get to the end of the rainbow.

So don’t give up before you get what you want.

Keep pecking on that damned tree.

How do you feel about overnight success stories?