Does hard work really pay off?

I’ll apologise now for this post, I’m in one of those soppy, emotional moods and I’ve found that this blog  (despite my earlier post where I said that I was no longer posting personal things…that didn’t last long!) is one of the most helpful ways to get things off my chest 🙂 If you don’t want to read what will probably turn out to be me whinging, then click off now!

“It shouldn’t be easy to be amazing. Then everything would be. It’s the things you fight for and struggle with before earning that have the greatest worth. When something’s difficult to come by, you’ll do that much more to make sure it’s even harder–or impossible– to lose.”
― Sarah DessenAlong for the Ride

I’ve been mulling this over for a little while now, I think I work pretty hard, my hobbies and free time are filled with writing (be it on my blog or for the websites I write for) and trying to learn more, and at the moment; slogging my guts out over my short film. So when I see people that  seem to be able to put in less effort and yet achieve more it’s a little soul destroying, Don’t get me wrong, I’m surrounded by talented people who deserve to do well, but it makes me wonder, is it hard work that pays off or is it simply being privileged and lucky? Although I’m doing well at the minute what with writing for various different things, I still don’t seem to be getting that far and it doesn’t correlate with the effort I’ve been putting in. I’m not saying I haven’t done well, I’m so happy with the opportunities I’ve had recently, but I see people achieve so much more; people of the same level as me, people the same age, and yet people that don’t seem to have to put so much effort in. In other words; people who are privileged.

Maybe I’m doing something wrong. perhaps it’s the way I present myself, or the fact I’m too quiet. Maybe I just lack the skills to make myself seen, heard and noticed or maybe my lack of confidence, which does have a habit of making me take a back seat to let others do the talking, not because I can’t but because I lack the confidence, is at fault. I’d love to know what I’m doing wrong so I can stop it, but as far as I can see I’m doing everything I can.

I know this is off topic, but aren't Berger Picard's just gorgeous?! <3
I know this is off topic, but aren’t Berger Picard’s just gorgeous?! ❤

This happens in every aspect of life, from the small things to the more important things. For instance; I’m very careful with my money, I save, I budget and I don’t go out too often because I don’t want to mindlessly spend money. Despite this I see people who are less careful with their money than me managing to go on holiday every  year, go out all the time and buy new clothes, fancy phones and other things that I simply can’t afford, these are people that are earning the same amount as me, and are also at uni fending for themselves. Which is why I’m wondering if it is about hard work or whether it’s simply about privilege. If you come from a privileged background you’re made for life, hard work doesn’t (often) factor in. It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.

When I work in a group I’m the overlooked one, the one that puts in work behind the scenes but doesn’t get noticed (and in turn, doesn’t get any credit). I’ve been the soul person pushing a project in the past, with groups that have done nothing, and still not been recognised for my work (although this was some time ago now!) Once Bitten, Twice Shy could just be a turning point; I pushed that completely alone until the day of the shoot, when I had a brilliant crew to help make the final thing come to life, but everything, every bit of organisation leading up to that including finding a budget (half of which came out of my own pocket) a location, actors and props, was me and this time I’m feeling good about how it’s going. I don’t want this to sound selfish, my crew were brilliant and deserve every bit of credit for what they did on the day; the film itself couldn’t have looked as good as it does (the rough cut is finished by the way!) without them, but I put in so many hours behind the scenes, spent every day and every hour of my ‘free’ time planning, organising and mostly worrying! On a personal level, the film means a lot to me and if it does well and if do well off the back of it, it will not only be a first but a huge confidence boost.

I’ve picked a stupid career really, not only is it really hard to break into and do well in but it’s competitive. I really need to learn what it is about me that makes me so easily unnoticed and so easily forgotten. Maybe that’s something I’ll just have to work out on my own. In the meantime, I can only thank you all for supporting the film, no one save my close friends and relatives, really cares about the fact that I made it, the exciting thing and the selling point is the cast. I’m cool with that…if it means loads of people watch it then great! Already the Facebook page likes have shot up to 90 and people seem really interested in seeing the finished thing, which is awesome. My fingers and toes are firmly crossed for the success of the film, it’s a very special project to me.

I still don’t know whether hard work actually pays off. I’ve worked hard with my writing but the one actual job job I’ve got as a writer doesn’t pay…I don’t feel like I’m really going as far as I could/should. I’m still young though I suppose, and I guess it’d be daft to assume I’m destined to live like this for the rest of my life; working hard, being good (ish) at what I do and yet still not quite achieving…no one knows what the future holds.

On a different note though, the trailer for Once Bitten is coming soon, I’ve just finished the rough cut and will be fine tuning the film, polishing it and making it perfect over the next couple of months or so…exciting stuff! 😀

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15 thoughts on “Does hard work really pay off?

  1. I can’t wait to see the finished product. I think once you’ve found your niche, you’ll find people will pay a bit more attention to your efforts. Once Bitten, Twice Shy will just be the start! 🙂

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    1. Me either! It’s already looking pretty good, I’m going a little bit mad keep hearing the lines over and over again while editing though hahaha I guess that’s what it was like for you guys having to learn the lines before the shoot D:
      I hope so, but what my niche is I have no idea! like Fiona said on the shoot, we’ll probably end up having to make porn because there’s no other jobs xD lol 😛

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      1. Well, that’ll leave me out of future films, despite being told by my old work mates that I looked like a 70s porn star I lack the…shall we say, necessary oversized credentials! LMAO!!!

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  2. Hard work totally pays off, I know exactly where your coming from! And with the whole groups thing, lol trust me we’re on the same track. Actually we sort of have that organisation skills in common, I mean we’re both hard workers. It will pay off someday 🙂 My family are going through some financial struggles atm, but even though they still put that aside and help me in every way to push my career forward. Likewise, thats how I’ve made my next short film. I guess, what I’m trying to say is that there are loads of people in the same situation as us, that simply waste their years and doss about. Whereas, people like us make use of our free time and our creative talent (nice way to put it). But hard work and effort is totally a good thing 🙂 Sorry just realised how long this comment is 😀

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    1. Yeah I see what you mean 😀 It’s good that we’re all in the same boat too!
      My parents are in a permanent financial struggle haha they try to help me when and if they can but usually they can’t :/ like, they can’t put anything aside for me, they help when they can but they can’t even afford to put money to one side! :/ My hope is to one day earn enough that I can help them lol!
      But yeah that’s definitely true, people dossing around doesn’t help so in that sense hard work is key, and we definitely have that in common!!
      Sometimes it’s just so difficult to think positively :/ I’m sure it’ll all pay off in the end though, fingers crossed for all of us!!

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      1. Yeah thats true, and yeah same. I hope too that someday I can earn more and fully help them out. I see where your coming from but someday we’ll definitely look back and be glad that we continued to do what we do best 🙂 We all worked great as a team and thats the most important thing. Just stay positive, I know its easier said than done…but it’ll surely make you feel better 🙂

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  3. We all have bad days. You are having a bad day. 96% of all the stuff you just said is going to make you feel stupid tomorrow. Not that what you feel is stupid because we ALL feel that way, and least we who don’t get stuff for free have have to work. Life ISN’T fair. Hard word DOESN’T always pay. The best person doesn’t necessarily get the prize. You can work for 40 years and get canned because the bosses’ kid wants your job.

    This seems to come as a shock to young people, but we Old Hands have had the crap beaten out of us, so we get it. I’ve got 1200 (more? I’m losing track) posts and almost 85,000 hits — and who knows how many followers — and never gotten a nod from freshly pressed. What does that mean? Unworthy? You need to see your own value because if you look to the World to validate you, it’s a crap shoot. You may get the statuette, then have it taken away. Ask my husband about that one. No one said it’s going to be fair, kind, logical, reasonable, consistent, or even comprehensible. Life is messy. Enjoy it when it’s going well, put up with it the rest of the time, and never assume you are in control!

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    1. I’m pretty sure I will look back in years time and think I was an idiot, it’s already happened a few times and I’m only 20! Sometimes though it feels like there’s more downs than there are ups!
      You always make so much sense, probably one of the wisest people I’ve spoken to to be honest! Puts things into perspective somewhat.

      I know they’re such gorgeous dogs! I think they’re quite rare though, hadn’t heard of them until I watched because of winn dixie, then I fell in love!!

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      1. I have lost my optimism, but never my hope. You can’t count on anything, but you can hope for everything. Sometimes, it happens. If it does, enjoy every moment because life is a crap shoot. Fair has nothing to do with life. Luck, timing, meeting the right people are as much a part of success as anything. But you can NEVER go wrong with doing your best because the satisfaction of living up to your own highest standards is not something anyone can take away, the one prize you get to keep. Buck up. As my mom always said, this too shall pass.

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  4. I can certainly empathise and sympathise with the sentiments you’ve shared here. I’ve been writing Anime reviews for over 6 years now (unpaid of course – although the free discs saves me a fortune!) and while I hope I have improved over the years, I feel like I am treading water. I’ve applied for numerous creative writing jobs and used these as my portfolio so to speak but to no avail. I assume this means I’m no good.

    I now what you mean about the effort feeling like being all for nothing, like when I bust a gut to meet a new release deadline then find out no-one has read the review. I’m a naturally pessimistic person who suffers from depression so this always hits me hard, although I know I shouldn’t be so thin skinned about it.

    Unlike you, however, I am a lot older than 20 so I probably am wasting my time (the job centre seems to think so) and even with my infrequent bouts of short filmmaking (like you my chosen goal in life) I get disheartened very easily when I think I’ve made something pretty cool only to receive a muted response. Since you have found your desired career path early on, you certainly have a lot more time to nurture your talent and make a success of it.

    You seem canny enough to realise that it won’t happen overnight and that you have to put the hard graft in, so when your time comes, you are experienced and knowledgeable enough to carry the onus and prove that you belong. It might another five, ten or fifteen years but as long as you keep learning, keep improving and keep working, you’ll get there.

    Sorry for the long post but I think it’s a bit too early for you to be worrying like this and should be concentrating on just getting stuck in there. When you get to my age THEN you can start worrying! 😛

    Best of luck to you. 🙂

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