Short Term Sacrifice = Long Term Reward – Jay Azeltine

Jay Azeltine – @Jay_Azeltine

Everyone (well, mostly everyone) wants to do BIG things in life.

Big aspirations are great. They’re the seed that must be planted in order to do great things. It all starts with a vision and dream. This is the first step in the process of becoming great.

In today’s world of social media you can’t go through Twitter for more than 20 seconds without seeing something to the extent of, “BIG THINGS coming !!” We’re living in a world where we constantly see others doing big things on the internet and it looks cool. So, naturally, we want to do the same thing.

Unfortunately most people just don’t understand the sacrifices that most likely need to be made in order to fulfill these BIG dreams. There will be a number of trials and tribulations along the way. Your dedication to the vision will be tested.

If you spend just a few minutes listening to any high level individuals who have gotten to the top of their field speak on their success, you’ll quickly realize that they didn’t end up there by chance. They made numerous sacrifices along the way. Constantly pushing through short term sacrifices in order to attain long term reward.

Take Gary Vaynerchuk (@Garyvee on IG) for example. He often talks about the sacrifice necessary to get to the top of your chosen field.  

Throughout his early teens and twenties he worked seven days a week. Every single week. Skipping out on “normal” childhood activities such as dating and playing video games with his friends. Rather, he spent his time focused on honing in on his craft as an entrepreneur.

From an early age he knew that he wasn’t a normal kid. In school he was taught to believe that he was stupid because he did not flourish in the classroom setting. Fortunately for him,he was extremely self aware and knew that he had a very special talent in selling and business. He went all in on his strengths.

When he was in middle school he was spending his weekends at trading card conventions, flipping trading cards and making thousands of dollars per event at times. Once he got a little older his father brought him into the wine business and he began spending his weekends working in the shop. Learning the art of sales and many other skills that would benefit him greatly as he aged and became a true entrepreneur.

The point is that he essentially sacrificed his entire childhood and teenage years in order to fulfill his bigger picture of becoming an extremely successful businessman.

I can’t necessarily relate to these types of sacrifices at such a young age. When I was in my teens I was hanging with my friends, drinking mountain dew and playing video games. It wasn’t until I got a little older I realized that I could make my dreams a reality by making sacrifices and going all in on my goals.

As many of you know, I recently moved to Indianapolis (it’s been about 2 ½ months now) to be apart of team IVB and work with Zach Homol. This was a massive opportunity that I could not turn down.

I was doing well with everything back in Ohio, but I felt like I was kinda spinning my wheels at times. The opportunity presented to me by Zach was something that I would have forever regretted had I not taken full advantage of it.

So I Made the Jump, dropping everything and moving to Indy within one week of making the decision. I knew that there were many sacrifices about to be made, but I was willing to sacrifice in the short term in order to receive the long term reward. I knew that this was the key to living the life of my dreams.

The first sacrifice that I made was compacting a whole entire house of possessions down into one single bedroom. I was living in a brand new house of my OWN at the time. What many would consider a dream home (s/o to my pops for helping me make that a reality so early in life.)

I was going to be moving into a college house here in Indy with a few of my new business partners. I was excited to be living with them and getting to know them, but it was certainly going to be a change of pace from what I was used to.

I compacted my entire house down into boxes that would fit in my single bedroom in Indy. It was certainly a small sacrifice, but honestly I’ve been loving living here the past few months. We have a blast together. That being said, I’ll be pretty stoked when I move into my own house here in a few months haha.

There were many other sacrifices that were made along this journey, but by far the toughest one was moving away from home. Moving away from my family. Moving away from my mother.

I grew up in a very close knit family. Spending a LOT of time with my parents growing up. Especially my mother. I’m what you would call a Mommas boy. I take pride in that. My Mom is a saint. She’s one of my biggest role models.

I’m very close with my sister and her children as well. Her two boys are ages four and six. They’re my homies. I would visit them at least once a week. When I told them that I was moving away they were pretty sad, which made it even more difficult on me.

Naturally, it was VERY tough for me to leave my family. I always talked about one day moving away and living around the world, but when I finally did move away and it became reality, it turned out to be a lot more difficult than I imagined it would be.

I’m only 3 ½ hours away from home, which isn’t very far of course. But when I started breaking it down, I realized that I was likely only going to see my family a handful of times per year, versus numerous times per week.

This remains to be difficult for me and I imagine it will never feel completely “normal.” As the years go on, it will become more normalized I’m sure, but I can’t imagine it ever becoming totally normal.

Here’s a positive spin though; now that I don’t see my loved ones nearly as often, I appreciate the times that I do spend with them so much more. There’s always a positive spin on difficulties in life.

This was all just part of the process and journey for me though. I knew that sacrifices were just part of the game. At the same time, I knew that these sacrifices were actually going to bring me closer to my family and allow me to fulfill the goals pertaining to them much more effectively.

From a young age I promised my parents that I would grow up to be very successful and one day I would be able to pay their bills when they got older. Sending them on international trips around the world. Buying them a house in Florida. Being able to help them live the life of their dreams in retirement instead of living off of a tight pension budget and constantly stressing money.

This is one of my biggest goals in life. With the path that I was on in prior to moving to Indy, I was not confident that I would actually be able to fulfill this goal, which pained me very deeply.

This made it that much easier to make that short term sacrifice of leaving my family and pursuing the bigger vision though. It was just a stepping stone along the way; a necessary piece of the puzzle.

So I Made the Jump.

As I mentioned, there are many more sacrifices that were made throughout this process. Many more components that I look forward to sharing as time goes on. I’m actually currently working on writing a book titled Making the Jump where I go super in depth on every component of this decision and what played out as a result. Really excited about this !!

I’m constantly pushing myself to make short term sacrifices in order to reap long term rewards. Living in the moment and enjoying the process, while also living for the future and setting myself up for a very nice life in my 30’s, 40’s and beyond. The more sacrifices that I make now, the less that I will likely have to make in the future.

As Jocko Willink says, “Discipline equals freedom.”

All the while trying to maintain life balance. I’m someone that can very easily get burnt out if I’m not careful. So I try to balance the craziness with chill time throughout the week.

I’m not saying that you necessarily need to drop everything and move away from home. If you think that getting out of your hometown will help you push towards your vision, then by all means DO IT.

Everyone’s sacrifices are gonna look different. Just know that if you wanna do big things in life you’re gonna have to make sacrifices along the way. It may be sacrificing some of your social life in order to spend your evenings and weekends side hustling towards starting a non profit to bring water to Africa. It may be sacrificing new cars and clothes in order to save up enough money to create your startup.

Be prepared to make sacrifices. But at the same time, know that those short term sacrifices will likely bring you much more long term reward. Or they might not. That’s the risk you must be willing to take.

Until next time,

Much love.


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