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9 Things Everyone Needs to Know About Success, Reality & Being Human.

In: Life,

  1.  There’s a strong possibility I’ll be diagnosed with systemic lupus on August 15th. (Update: I didn’t. In fact, I’m healthier than ever. Blood tests are crafty little fuckers, huh?)
  2. My latest book proposal was rejected.
  3. I had to fire an employee yesterday because she neglected to get a client contract signed.
  4. I ignore friends and people I care about because I don’t have the mental energy to keep up with everyone. In fact, I have 64 unopened personal Facebook messages–and the thought of going through them all exhausts me.
  5. I have a bat shit crazy ex-client threatening to raise a lawsuit in the amount of $75,000 if I don’t continue to make edits for her above and beyond our work agreement. (Update: Neither occurred.)
  6. I am 20 pounds heavier than I should be because there are too many days that I can’t pull myself away from my work.
  7. I’m often cranky, snap at people who don’t deserve it, and I’m stressed more than I’m not.
  8. I get anxious when I don’t feel like I’m doing enough, or trying hard enough, or something’s gone wrong, and I unconsciously pick at my fingers obsessively–to the point where people have to hold my hands down.
  9. I was an unreasonable bitch over the phone with the optometrist yesterday just because he told me I had to come in one more time before he could order my contacts.

You know why I just told you all of that?

Because there are too many god damn filters and I’m sick of it.

Sure. Filters make us look good. (Instagram, anyone?) Filters make you sound good. (Nice Facebook post you re-wrote 14 times.) Filters make us seem good. (You didn’t dare mention what you really thought when you were kissing ass at that conference, did you?)

But filters are ruining us.

Because they’re filtering out REALITY.

And when you filter out reality, you know what you get?

One big fat lie of a life. 

And you know what you get when you have one big fat lie of a life?


So today is no filter day, because guess what? We’re human fucking beings, and the only way we’re going to stay human, is by getting human.

I don’t want to hear about how great you are.

Or how much money you’ve made. How “well-connected” you are. Or from what continent you’re snapping a picture of yourself on some beach.

I want to know what’s going on BEHIND the smiles.

If you just saw any of our Facebook feeds, you’d think we all had perfect lives.

And not only is it not true, it’s POISON.

I can’t imagine how many people I’ve made feel horrible about themselves because of some happy horseshit I’ve posted online. Like they weren’t doing enough. Or making enough. Or hustling enough. Or living enough.

Because the filter’s always on.

But guess what?

It’s only by removing the filter that we can actually say something meaningful, and MOVE THE CONVERSATION FORWARD.

It’s about getting raw.

And sharing what our actual experience is like on this planet–not just where we succeed, but where we fail.

And how we change because of it.

So yes. I AM running a near million dollar business from a Macbook, and YES, I DO travel all over the god damn world. YES, I DO meet exotic people, and YES, I DO have some really great fucking stories.

But when you’re comparing your life against mine, don’t forget to count items one through nine–and everyone else’s one through nine.

Because when you only view things through a filter, all you’re seeing is a mere hologram of what life–and success–actually looks like.

Instead of actual life–and success–itself.

The good, the bad, and the motherfucking lupus.

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337 thoughts on "9 Things Everyone Needs to Know About Success, Reality & Being Human."

  1. Nemo says:

    Here’s my 9.

    I’m struggling at the new job that I’m in just out of training. I feel like a failure as the store manager has had to come and bail out my department because there is NO ONE there to help me and I’m trying to do it all on my own.

    A good friend of mine died and I cried more for him than I did for my own grandfather who died a month earlier. How messed up is that?

    My credit is tanked. I have medical debt floating around that I don’t even know where it is, and I have garnishes on my paycheck for students loans for a degree I never finished.

    My asthma is flaring up badly and one of my brand new inhalers of the prescription I just filled fell out of my pocket and no one can find it at the store.

    My boyfriend is miserable with his job and working 60-70 hour weeks so I barely get to see him.

    My mother is completely miserable down in her home with my father, and I have no idea how I can help.

    My house is a disaster zone and my boyfriend is constantly on my case to clean, but I just don’t have the fucking energy.

    I’m fat. Like, ugly fat. And I still don’t get off my ass because I’m too fucking tired all the time.

    I’ve thought about just ending it all because I just can’t take the bullshit anymore.

    There’s my nine. Most people if they actually knew would probably hate my guts for posting this.

    1. Ash Ambirge says:

      Nemo, thank you for sharing this. I’m sorry you’re going through a rough time, and I can relate with the lack of energy. It’s terrible when you feel like you don’t even have enough to give back to yourself. And I know it probably doesn’t help, but know that you can always come here and find a group of like minded folks where you can talk. Come say hi to us on the Facebook page – we talk all the time.

      Life can be hard as shit. But you WILL BE OKAY.

  2. I loved this post Ash, long time reader.

    I published something along these lines awhile back too, same thought:

    And, you DO set the bar higher for everyone who reads what you write… no matter what goes on “behind the scenes.” 🙂