Desired Difficulties Open Doors

“Having challenges in your life opens doors for you.”  -Payal Kadakia

People who have easy lives early rarely accomplish anything of significance these days.

Sure, two centuries ago if you weren’t from a wealthy family you probably weren’t learning to read nor getting an education so were doomed to a life of labor but those days are passed.  Now life is so easy for so many that young people do not learn to overcome obstacles because there are so few impediments in their lives.  As such they don’t develop resilience or the hunger for opportunity and achievement because they have never been starving so won’t go to extraordinary measures to survive then achieve significance.

Most self-made billionaires came from less than nothing.  The cliché of the dirt-poor immigrant amassing immense wealth is common in America because it has happened so often, while others given more opportunity made less of their potential or education because they lacked the hunger to put forth the effort and the creativity to turn others’ garbage into gold.

Economist Malcolm Gladwell explored the idea of “desired difficulties” where individuals supposedly cursed (say with dyslexia like Mets’ owner Steve Cohen) found alternative ways to compete that more than compensated for their “weakness” or “deficiency” and ultimately created immense success and fortunes.  I have seen the work ethic of a poor farm kid build a great business, or the salesman with the speech impediment break all the records.  Because they had to find a different, better way that suited them because they didn’t have the right pedigree or degree or other “advantages” that may provide a high floor but also impose a ceiling due to having a too easy path to success.

Instead of having the red carpet rolled out for you, it’s better to have challenges and learn to open the doors others ignore to get into the halls of power.  Because when you come from nothing you have nothing to lose, so keep trying until you gain entry where others just give up.