Sometimes success happens long after you’ve given up hope for a happy ending.
Let me explain.
Years ago I visited a retired executive to go over my business plan. I wanted to expand my art business through manufacturing and licensing, but the retired executive believed I could never accomplish my goals because I lacked the time.
“You need 80 hours a week to do what you want to do,” he said. “Anything less is certain failure.”
That experience dampened my exuberance. Instead of walking away with a strategy to transform my business, I was advised to give up.
I didn’t follow the advice, but I did scale back my dream. I stopped pursuing manufacturers for a contract and settled for keeping production in-house. I stopped courting companies to license my artwork for personal checks, calendars, books, and clip art and settled for producing limited edition prints instead. I stopped trying to expand my market to art galleries in New York and settled with art galleries in San Francisco.
This week I received a call from an art gallery owner I hadn’t heard from in a long time. “Are you still at the same address?” she asked.
“Yes, I am,” I said. “Why?”
My largest and most expensive painting had sold. The art gallery owner was calling to confirm where to send the check.
After the initial shock wore off, a warm glow of joy and satisfaction overcame me.
I sold a piece of artwork I had mentally written off.
I had given up just like the retired executive had advised.
And I was wrong.
I started wondering what would have happened if I had not listened to that retired executive and had continued to pursue my big dream.
Who’s keeping you from pursuing yours?