Hard work, diligence and focus often lead to very good results. These are the organizations and individuals that consistently show up and work toward their goals.
But exceptional results, hyper-growth and remarkable products and services rarely come from the path that leads to very good results. These are non-linear events, and they don't come from linear effort or linear skill.
It's tempting to adopt the grind-it-out mindset, because that's something we know how to do, it's a method that we can model, it's a sort of work ethic.
But by itself, the grind-it-out mindset isn't going to get us a leap. It's not going to lead to a line out the door or 15% monthly growth. That only comes from giving up.
We need to give up some of the truths that are the foundation of our work, or give up on some of the people we work with, or give up on the conventional wisdom. Mostly, we need to give up on getting approval from our peers.
Of course, we still have to keep showing up and grinding out. But we have to do it with a different rhythm, in service of a different outcome.
More hours in the practice room doesn't turn a pretty good musician into a jazz pioneer. More hours in front of the computer doesn't make your writing breathtaking.
Sure, the work might be just as hard, but it's work of a different sort.