If you want to be an overnight success, you do the work day in and day out. You do the work that everyone else gives up on. You do the work that everyone else has mistakenly labeled a waste of time. You do the work even when you're convinced that everyone on Twitter and Facebook has figured out some foolproof system that they haven't clued you in on. You do the work even when it is boring. You do the work even when you don't feel like it and would rather curl up under the blanket on the couch with coffee and a movie.
Then one day, out of nowhere, you will be labeled an overnight success. A door will open to a new hallway with new doors bearing new opportunities. You will still have to do the work to open these doors, but they will swing a little more freely.
Everyone will want to know how exactly you got so lucky. How you found the shortcut to that hallway with those doors. And you will smile because you know the answer isn't one they want to hear.
The shortcut is doing the work.
Originally published January 2013