This is a picture of me at 17 years old.
It was just after Christmas. I was up in Wisconsin with my family, where we go every year to do some snowmobiling.
That’s my brand new laptop I got as a present, intended of course to perform at the highest standards in college.
But was that my plan?
That is a candid picture of me smiling and watching World of Warcraft videos of the top players in North America — my competition.
And that is not after-Christmas glee on my face, enjoying a nice family vacation, but a competitive hunger.
I couldn’t wait to get home, back to my desktop, where I could resume my dream of becoming a professional gamer.
This is a picture of me at 26 years old (taken about a year ago).
I was walking between meetings. I had just quit my job. I didn’t have any clients lined up yet. I was trying to figure out how I was going to land some business.
I felt like time was running out.
Whenever you are aiming for something, whenever you are working toward a goal, whenever you are looking toward the future and trying to build something, you will always, on some level, feel like time is running out.
And it takes a long time to learn, but patience is actually the best gift you could ever give yourself in the process.
When I was 17 years old, I came back from that vacation (photo at top) and worked my face off for four months straight, staying up all hours of the night to become a professional gamer. And sure enough, I became one of the highest ranked World of Warcraft players in North America, with one of the most popular gaming blogs on the Internet back in 2007.
I even wrote a book about it, called Confessions of a Teenage Gamer.
Fast forward almost 10 years, and a few weeks after I left my full-time job, I was named one of the Top 25 Marketing Influencers to watch in 2017 by Forbes.
And I started to get more business than I knew what to do with.
You always have time. There is always more time. I felt like I was running out of time at 17. And sometimes, I still feel like I’m running out of time.
But when I pull back and really just look at the path as a whole, I realize how young I still am — and even more so, how young I was 10 years ago.
You have time.
Just get started today, and keep on moving.
Thanks for reading! 🙂
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Originally published at medium.com