Lately I have been very interested in Elon Musk and his worldview. He seems to have some unique ability to shape the world to what he wants to do. I think he does this primarily because he just doesn’t think the way normal people do.
For example, every time he would get a large buyout figure from one of his company’s being acquired, instead of sitting back and relaxing, he would look for an even bigger problem to solve. Then he would go all-in on the new investment, and pour all of his money and time into making it work.
This of course has resulted in him gaining larger and larger rewards each time. He went from a Millionaire, to a Hundred-Millonaire, to a Billionaire by continuing to push himself.
A few days ago, I was watching an interview where Elon talked about the journey of being an entrepreneur. In one part of the interview he said: “A friend of mine said running a start-up is like chewing glass and staring into the abyss. After a while, you stop staring, but the glass chewing never ends”.
I thought this was an awesome analogy, and I have been thinking in my own life ever since.
The idea of ‘eating glass’ seems insane, unsafe and just plain unpleasant. To a normal person, there isn’t any logical reason why you would do it.
I think deciding to set a big goal in your life and go for it is exactly the same. After the initial enthusiasm wears off, you get into a phase where you are just ‘eating glass’ for a long, long time.
It gets grueling, it gets insane, it gets incredibly painful to keep going. But if you want something bad enough, you just keep eating the glass.
Interviewer: “When you had that third failure in a row, did you think “I need to pack this in”
Elon Musk: “Never”
Interviewer: “Why not?”
Elon Musk : “I don’t ever give up. I mean… I’d have to be dead, or completely incapacitated..”
Everything worth doing in your life has a price. But here’s the thing: the price is probably much higher than you think. It will also take a lot longer than you estimated. That’s just the way it is.
The beauty of ‘eating glass’ is that very very few people are truly willing to do it, and hence the rewards are incredibly abundant if you keep going.