Gary Vaynerchuk, serial entrepreneur and CEO of VaynerMedia, has some real talk for 20-somethings: There's no secret to success. If you want to get ahead, you have to be willing to spend years working and sacrificing.
By wasting time trying to figure out a shortcut, you're "playing a fake narrative instead of putting in the actual work that's needed to actually pull it off," Vaynerchuk tells Taylor, a 22-year-old who called into his "#AskGaryVee" show on IGTV.
A recent college graduate with dreams of starting her own business, Taylor wanted to know how she could get over feeling as though her career wasn't progressing quickly enough.
The first step is to stop using other people as a metric of success, Vaynerchuk tells her.
"Don't compare yourself to the Kardashians," he says. "Every second you spend thinking about what someone else has, it is taking away from time that you can create something for yourself."
If you're wasting hours on Instagram comparing yourself to your peers, "you're losing," he says. That's because "you're in your bed looking at somebody's glamorous Photoshopped [picture] of them doing something cool, and you're envious and you're jealous and you're impatient, and it's crippling your upside."
Young people can't expect to become successful overnight, Vaynerchuk says. If you want to be a millionaire or build a thriving business, you should expect to put in years of work first. "You need to be patient as f---," he explains. "You're 22, 23 years old. What do you think is going to happen overnight?"
Vaynerchuk underlines the importance of committing yourself to the process. "If you really want to win, here's what you need to do: You need to stop giving a s--- about what anyone else has, and realize that if you put your head down and just work for the next 10 years — no glamour, no new car, suitcase, jewelry, trip, event, no Coachella, no new f------ sneakers — you will have it."
That means no distractions. "Every time you care about one of the things I just mentioned, it will slow down your process" of becoming successful, he says.
Vaynerchuk's tough-love comments echo advice he's shared before. In a 2017 Facebook video that garnered more than 1.3 million views, he said that, even if you're working a 9-to-5 job, you still have plenty of hours left in the day to hustle.
However, many people don't dedicate that time to their passion projects. "What do you do with those other five hours?" he asked. "You're watching 'House of f------ Cards.' You're playing Madden. You're relaxing from the other intense 10."
He went on to say that if you want to waste valuable time watching TV, you need to accept the fact that you'll never be rich or successful. You're "giving up opportunity to go into a new world," he said.
His harsh views have sparked debate and criticism online, but the comments that followed his conversation with Taylor are largely positive. "Out of all the content you post daily, this one spoke to me the most because I was feeling the same exact way that she was feeling," one Instagram user commented. "And now I found the answers and truth I need."
For Vaynerchuk, success is all about staying focused and enjoying the process. "Every second you spend thinking about what someone else has, it is taking away from time that you can create something for yourself," he says. "Spend that energy on your visions and execute."
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