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The Million Dollar Struggle (is real)

A rule of thumb in the creative space is that the way in which you get to a place, is the same way you maintain it. Countless creatives, public figures, and influencers have a struggle mentality preventing them from fully thriving in their area of expertise and in enjoying their personal lives. The constant sense of pressure from remaining relevant, pushing out content aggressively, and landing brand deals can cause many to fold. The Million Dollar Struggle is not found in working to reach a goal, but in reaching a height of success with a mindset of anxiety and a fear of losing it all.

Imagine getting to the top of a mountain, only to feel as if you are running on a hamster wheel. Mountains themselves can be isolating, so to be there with no off-button is even more strenuous on the mind and emotions. Even personal relationships can be impacted.

Most grind to reach a level of rest, only to find vapor once they arrive. They see that the same hustle it took to get to that mountain of success never allows them to pause and take in the accomplishments made. Overtime, the mind and brain become wired to toil and exhibit restless behavior; so, even when one desires to stop, the mind keeps going. This interferes with living in the fruits of one’s labor. To grind is to whittle to the bone; this looks like not getting appropriate sleep; eating on the go; lack of self-care; and lack of community. Forfeiting inner wealth in exchange for external riches leaves many broke and broken.

Those with success, longevity, productivity, and true fulfillment establish the following principles in their work life and personal life.

Rest while you work. Again, physical work isn’t an issue. It’s the mentality you work in that matters. Toil is a mindset suggesting that in order to prosper one must suffer. It’s a rigid way of progress that has you looking out for “competition”, drafting contingency plans, over-working, and even becoming hostile in strategizing. It lacks ease and reflects a creative fight or flight pattern and perspective. The body and the inner being is designed to flow, with rest being the water in which it floats in. What good is it to gain a high-level lifestyle, if you aren’t able to actually enjoy it? You find yourself becoming an actor in a false reality. Be sure to rest while you work.

Mindset over toil. Again, toil is found in how one thinks not in physical labor. Many billionaires and those with old money understand this truth. They know the power of stillness, thinking, and relaxing the mind and brain (which are two separate entities). The best ideas and lucrative concepts reveal themselves in times of rest. And rest is found in the mind, it then trickles over into the physical brain. The brain then relays this information to the body. By way of this process, the mind and brain are being trained to believe and behave in such a way that the inner being begins to attribute wealth to rest. It creates a safe place to innovate without walking on egg shells.

Temper your creativity. Most creatives can become overwhelmed with inspiration. It may sound strange, but anyone who has ever had a song, book, design, or film within them, knows what it’s like to have to get it on paper. The same is true for other spaces and industries. To have an idea unformed can push one to overwork themselves. Know when to pause and trust that the idea won’t evaporate. Discipline is key; learning and establishing a rest-work rhythm/routine grants innovation and produces longevity.

Know why you’re working. Vision can become blurred if not kept at the forefront of your sight and mind. That mountaintop experience can be years in the making; time exists between setting your intentions and walking them out. And if one isn’t alert, they can easily get entangled with goals that were never a part of the plan. Know why you’re working and be sober-minded on what you are navigating towards. Oftentimes, so many have reached the desired destination and don’t realize they have arrived. It’s the idea of being on the mountaintop and running on the hamster wheel. So, gain clarity and vision then focus on it to know when it’s materialized.

Understand where your value comes from. You already are who you will become. For example, your value didn’t change from when you were a baby to when you became an adult. The same value was in you when you were in the womb. The adult you have become, was inside of the baby you once were. Oftentimes, intrinsic value or self-worth gets entangled with net worth. Understanding this results in a different type of work mentality. It’s no longer about gaining self-worth from what you do but about adding value in the industry you find yourself in. Understand where your values come from.

Remember, peace is an asset of inner wealth; no matter the effort, it cannot be obtained externally.


Meditate on the root of your self-worth and ask the following:

  • Do I base self-worth on talent and ability?

  • Do I work in anxiety or enjoyment?

  • Do I allow my excitement and passion overrule my health, well-being, and relationships?

Start to seek ways to implement the habits mentioned in this Quick Read. Remember to journal your experience.


This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.


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