I was told and taught from a young age by my parents that “If you don’t ask, you don’t get”. This very simple statement has stayed with me, as an annoying little niggle in the back of my mind that pops up whenever I’m about to lose out on something I want. It creeps in through my ear, whispers to me ‘you’re being a doormat’, and suddenly I’m being very frank and forward about what I want whilst internally cringing at the fact I’m being so confrontational and honest.
It’s a trait that has since proven to work for me. There have been multiple occasions where my success has come from simply asking for an opportunity, and strangers giving me a chance. I never feel confident in doing it, but I force myself to ask the awkward questions because if I don’t, nobody else will do it for me. You have to make your own luck, and you won’t get anywhere by staying quiet on the side lines.
Some see this attitude of going for what you want and making things happen as arrogant. They think that you’re big headed, and obnoxious. In reality, this ‘I want it, so I’m going to get it’ comes from my need and want to prove my worth and ability. You don’t get anywhere in life without putting yourself out there, even if it ends in you looking like an absolute idiot.
I am by no means the most outgoing person. If anything, I’m a massive introvert. But I have learnt through experience that if you don’t push for something to happen, it will never happen. If you don’t get up again every time you get knocked back, you’ll end up sitting at square 1, wishing you’d just said something.
The older I get the more I realise that people are genuinely interested in your successes. Whether or not they show that in a kind way, it’s true. If you’re working hard and reaping rewards, people notice, and they want in. They want to know how you’re doing it, what you did to get it and how they too can get a piece of it. But most people are too proud to say “Hey I’m really interested in what you’re doing, would love to know how to do it myself”. Instead they’ll call you a try hard, or a slave to your work and scoff at anything you do.
Remember that nobody else but you can get you to where you want to be. People can advise you, and give you chances, but ultimately you are the one doing the work and putting in the time to even get that advice or that chance. So don’t listen to anyone else’s opinion, and focus on you.