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Sometimes people don’t always do what you want them to do.

In fact, sometimes they do things that suck.

They do things you don’t deserve. They do things that make you angry. You say to yourself, “how dare they!” And you start to list the reasons why they are wrong. Then you might quit, or stop talking to them, or cut off contact, or whatever.

Hold on a second.

When I first wanted to write for other websites it was mid-2002. I wrote to Jim Cramer, who started thestreet.com, and I gave him ten ideas I wanted him to write about.

No expectations back. I sincerely wanted him to write the articles. I would’ve been flattered with a response but none was necessary.

He wrote back, “these are some great ideas. How about you write about them!?”

He introduced me to the editor of thestreet, Dave Morrow.

I was in heaven! I was very excited! I daydreamed about writing famous articles, and going on TV, and raising lots of money for businesses. I wanted to start today! Yesterday! I wanted the future right now!

Dave never wrote me.

I wrote Dave every day and reminded him of Jim’s intro email. I called Dave and he was always busy. And when I finally got him on the phone he was always nice and said he would get right on it.

But he never would. I was really frustrated. Suddenly I REALLY WANTED to write for thestreet.com.

I said to a friend of mine,”That’s it! I don’t even want to write for a company that is going to treat someone like this.”

My friend said something very smart to me then that I never forgot and I say it often to other people as advice.

“Shut the F*ck up. Eventually he’s going to get back to you. Eventually you will start writing for thestreet.com and everything you are daydreaming about will come true and you’ll never even have to deal with that guy again.”

And he was right. Over and over and over again in many different life situations – writing, investing, customers, relationships, everything.

The gatekeepers in your way eventually crumble. Eventually your perseverance prevails. Eventually everyone in your way disappears.@jaltucher (Click to Tweet!)

He was right. Today, twelve years later, I have to remind myself of that one line again. Take a deep breath. He is right.


James Altucher has built and sold several companies, and failed at dozens more. He’s written ten books, and Choose Yourself is the book to RULE THEM ALL. He’s an investor in twenty different companies. He writes every day. He doesn’t have enough friends. Still interested in knowing him? Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.


Photo by stuartpilbrow