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  • Elaine Zito

Achieving Things You've Never Had Before


One of my favorite role models, Rachel Hollis, said that if you want to achieve things you've never achieved before, you must be willing to do things you've never done before. This was the theme for me, summer of 2019.


Allyn and I have a dream that requires us to increase our income by a substantial amount in a short amount of time. We are in a beneficial space to do this because our job allows us to work as much as we want. The amount of money we make is affected by how much time we put into it. So, we sat down and figured out if our goal was even possible, and then went to work.


First, let me explain the way we structure our work. During the 6 months we are in Virginia, we are able to work overtime. While we are in Florida, they don't allow for overtime. So, we work three days a week in Florida (12 hour shifts) which produces about 36 hours a week. And while we're in Virginia we make up for the 4 hours a week we miss as well as 2 weeks we take off in October. After figuring it all out, in Virginia we work our normal 40 hours a week but add an additional 200 hours of overtime to be achieved throughout the 6 months we are here. This ultimately keeps us disciplined and succeeding in an industry that is very easy to just live paycheck to paycheck and become stagnant in growth.


Reaching this goal would require more. I already struggle every year to hit the 200 hours of overtime, but to add on top of that as many hours as I could (because more hours is more money), seemed impossible (currently at 290 hours extra). I was working 65-70 hours a week for 5 weeks straight. My mind was tired and my body was even more exhausted. I went almost 2 weeks without a day off. But my reason "why" for doing it was stronger than any emotion. Now I definitely did my fair share of complaining. But for the most part, it wasn't as hard as I thought. Here's how I got through pushing myself:


1. Small victories: I needed something to get me through the long days at work. I didn't have much free time that wasn't spent sleeping or eating. So the few hours I did get I would treat myself. This included finding an awesome tv show, drinking a nicer bottle of wine, and buying that prosciutto. The little things got me through each day and brought me happiness.


2. When you're constantly doing something, it's not that bad: The more you work, the less it sucks. This is kind of a hard concept to grasp unless you just do it. But it's like the gym. You don't want to go, but once you're there, it's fine. When you're in the midst of a busy working season it's not that bad, but once you get two days off in a row, going back to work sucks sooo much more.


3. Things to look forward to: On top of my daily small victories, I created bigger events to look forward to. For example, we went to the OBX for 36 hours with Allyn's family. It wasn't a lot, but it allowed me to get away and feel like I was on vacation. I also knew that once September hit and kids went back to school, work would get a lot less busy. Shifts would be shorter and my days would end sooner, which meant more time for me.


4. An end in sight: My Florida season would come. Nothing lasts forever, and I knew this busy season would eventually end. A light at the end of the tunnel was a big help.


All in all, I'm really proud of reaching new bounds and working harder than I ever have. My biggest advice though is that unless your reason why or your goal is bigger than anything else, you won't be able to do it. It takes big dreams and passion to achieve things you've never done before. But it can be done. You're the only one stopping yourself. So if I can do it, you can too.


So whether you're trying to launch a business while still working at your day job, going to school at night to get that degree, or picking up a second job to save for a house, you CAN push yourself harder.Your dreams are worth it. No one said it was going to be easy. To achieve things you've never achieved before you must be willing to do things you've never done before. So go freakin' do it. You're the only one stopping yourself.


Xoxo, Isla Girl