Many entrepreneurs have said, “The first million is always the hardest.” Peter Thiel wrote a book, Zero to One, explaining how going from 0 to 1, is much harder than going from 1 to 100. There is a lot of thought leadership around this idea that getting started is usually the hardest part of the process. Why is this? I think it’s because we shed something upon friction; we let something go; we get leaner through learning. Once we’re lighter, we’re able to fly higher.
Getting started is often times the hardest part of the process because in the vertical ascension to success, we start off too “heavy.” The unnecessary weight of plans, doubts, expectations, and illusions keeps us from climbing to the top. As the picture above tries to convey, the higher you rise the less friction you encounter. Not because it get’s easier, it get’s easier because you’re not as weighed down.
Challenges, obstacles, adversity, tests, friction are all natural things. The truth is our lives are essentially a seamless web of friction. And as a result, growth is also natural. In this post I aim to explain one perspective about growth; from the lens of “weight.”
In the diagram below is an example of “growth” defined as finding one’s purpose in life. In order to achieve a state with little to no perceived friction, the person must shed off layers that is holding them back. As long as the illusion layer of the ego exists, that entity will be too “heavy” to elevate to the next level.
Therefore growth doesn’t happen as a result of friction, it happens as a result of the entity being lighter/leaner/faster which the friction sculpts. Just as a bodybuilder wants to grow, he/she must first burn off excess fat through obstacles in order to function efficiently to empower the body to grow.
If it’s just one thing I want to convey in this post, it’s this: As we encounter friction, we should strive to understand why we’re feeling the friction and learn to let go of that thing.
When Drake said, “Zero to a hundred” let’s not forget he “Started from the bottom,” first. He was heavy, that’s why it would have been hard for him to start at the top. But now that he has gone through his challenges he can reach 100 “real quick.”