Why they never break in

career, moving to los angeles, personal stories, random thoughts

That first decision to move to Los Angeles is thrilling.

You dream. Gorgeous weather. Warm sand stretching on the shore from Malibu to Redondo, curling between your toes. Finally the right environment to grow and find people like you.

Then you look at the practical details to actualize this dream…

  • How much to save
  • Your skill level at your chosen craft
  • A network to build your career

It can be hard to believe you can actually do it.

Every day can feel like you’re pushing a boulder uphill. The dollars never add up. Your skills don’t stack up to the professionals and despite sending dozens of emails, you still haven’t connected with anyone who can help you.

To the untrained eye, it looks like you haven’t done much at all.

But here’s what I see:

  • Steady progress towards reaching a savings goal that you’re inching towards everyday
  • Someone improving their craft each minute they work
  • Every email sent building a relationship — whether you get a response or not

It takes time.

People don’t make it not because they weren’t good enough.

They just didn’t work for long enough.

My first job, I made $3.33 per hour on the weekends to box up takeout orders at a Chinese restaurant.

When I became serious about writing, I committed to writing 500 words a day, everyday. Some days it took me 3 hours to hit my quota.

I’ve sent thousands of emails that never received a reply. Last week, I sent out 3 and didn’t hear back from any.

Five years ago, that would have crushed me. To my untrained eye, that was failure.

Now, I see it as progress. Because I know that’s the game. Relationships take years to build. For example, it took:

  • Hundreds of phone calls to build rapport with author James Ellroy
  • A year of research and studying Dennis Lehane before I felt ready to pitch working for him
  • Spending thousands of dollars, and reading 3 years worth of material before I had the opportunity to work for Ramit Sethi

Keep working. Keep grinding. Be patient. You got this.

Photo Credit: Joshi Bhavya

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