Sometimes when you really want something, you’ll do anything to make it happen. Whether it’s a job, a handbag, or a good grade in a class, tunnel vision takes over and all you can see is the prize waiting off in the distance. It can be tempting to do whatever it takes to get your hands on the thing right now—but in the end, we think it feels better to take the long way and actually earn it.
Some of our favorite fictional characters have taken the long road, and we’ve watched their journeys play out on screen. In our new favorite web series RePlay, Allison finds herself stuck “replaying” her birthday on repeat, and she quickly learns that she can’t just hit “rewind” on her life and expect everything to work itself out. The lesson is clear: If you want something, you have to work for it.
Don’t get us wrong—there are definitely ways to maximize efficiency and reach your goal faster. But those are things you can discover and tweak and perfect as you go. In the long run, we think taking the long way to achieve your goal is the best way. Here’s why—and for more, check out episodes from RePlay right here!
1. Shortcuts aren’t worth it.
Yes, they’ll definitely get you results faster, but those results won’t be true to you. Instead, they’ll feel kind of cheap. If you put in the time up front, it may take a little bit longer, but trust us—the outcome will be well worth it.
2. You learn to enjoy “the ride.”
It’s a cliché, but it’s true: The ride is always more valuable than the actual thing you’re after. You might encounter a stern landlord, or accidentally broadcast some embarrassing moments to the world on YouTube. The ride may be long and hard and sometimes annoying, but you’ll come to enjoy its twists and turns, and appreciate what information you pick up from it along the way.
3. It helps you embrace failure.
Nobody likes to fail, but there’s a lot to be learned from life’s low moments. How or why you fell isn’t what’s important—it’s how you get back up again and proceed.
4. You pick up a lot of life lessons along the way.
Not only do you learn a lot about life when you take the long way, but you also learn a lot about yourself. What are you passionate about? What makes you tic? What’s your breaking point? When you set a goal and put your mind to achieving it, you’ll discover the unfiltered answers to these questions and more.
5. You learn not to sell yourself short.
Once you know your capabilities and your limits, you learn how to manage them. That includes protecting your self-worth and not settling. And in Allison’s case, not caving to be whoever some rude club promoters want her to be.
6. There’s definitely truth to that whole “10,000 hours” concept.
They say it takes 10,000 hours of practice to truly master a craft. Once you hit that milestone, you truly have something to show for your hard work. In that time you learn the ins and outs of what works, what doesn’t, and how you can improve. Shortcuts only offer solutions, not knowledge or growth.
7. By the time you get to your end goal, you really feel like you’ve earned it.
We aren’t going to sugarcoat it: Taking the long road is hard. It requires more work, more time and more effort. You might even change course a few times while you’re on it, because the hard road is all about the journey. But whatever you’re pining after will mean so much more when you take the long road to get it. No shortcuts, and nothing was handed to you—you and your hard work earned it.
Watch the first episode of RePlay now on go90 for even more life lessons!