Success comes at a price

You need to pay for it with your money, time and effort

There is no such thing as professional sacrifice for professional success—it’s personal sacrifice for professional success. If you want to succeed, you need to sacrifice your family time, money and pleasures.

Forgo your money

Personal money is that part of your expense that your office will not reimburse. Sometimes, to get your job done well will cost you money—your own money. But when it comes down to personal expense for potential success, a lot of people hesitate or back out completely.

Once I was to do a workshop in Chennai. To save on hotel cost, the client booked me for an early morning flight. But by compromising the previous night’s sleep, I wouldn’t have been able to do a smashing job at the full day event. So I flew down the night before at my expense.

The logic is simple: If you do an average job and save some money, you will earn an average income. If you do an extraordinary job by spending some of your money, you can earn an extraordinary income.

Give up pleasure

The one thing all successful personalities have in common is temporary ‘sacrifice of personal pleasure’. They don’t go clubbing but use the extra time to practise and study. They let go of the ‘hanging out with the boys’ to rehearse and prepare.

Successful individuals let go of ‘immediate pleasure’ for long-lasting success. And once they hit the jackpot, life becomes a party. So many young professionals waste themselves in night clubs and other hangouts ganging up to ‘de-stress’ or ‘bitch about their life at work’.

If you haven’t reached where you are headed, then dig your head in practice and study till you get there. Instead of spending time and money at the hangouts use the time to further your career.

Sacrifice family time

Sometimes you will need to burn the midnight oil and grind your way up. It will need sacrifice of valuable time with your family.

It is smart to make the sacrifice early in life so you can settle down later. It will surprise you but most successful business gurus are ‘family’ people. Having made it big in life, now they just call the shots and get work done on their own terms.

The sacrifice is not life-long. It is to take you to a stage in your career where you can become the boss of your own time, income and effort.

When people work aimlessly without a proper sacrifice plan to reach to the top they also sacrifice unknowingly—they sacrifice their health with the late-night partying, excessive caffeine, smoking; they sacrifice their family time unknowingly by bringing incomplete work and work-related stress at home.

However, such ‘sacrifice’ doesn’t bring them the success they desire. So, it’s best to prepare for compromise knowingly and willingly than to sacrifice your life unknowingly towards a success that will constantly elude you.


  1. To a certain extent YES, professional success does come at a price.
    Of course ‘no gain without pain’ is an axim supporting it.

    But it is not an all-time truth. Sacrificing money and time is all right. But for professional success, you need not invariably sacrifice your family life (which also is an important aspect of one’s life). There has to be an ‘efficient work-life-balance’ based on win-win position- not necessarily at the cost of family pleasures. Right priorities are to be decided at the right time

    Our Ex-president Abul Kalam Azad & also Chetan Bhagat (author) has brought home this point quite forcefully.

    Of course there has to be passion for what you do always, which is different from doing onething at the cost of the other. What is important is your ingenuity at striking a real ‘work-life-balance’, which is very much possible. In my professional life, I have seen umpteen number of people rising in the hierarchy by enjoying to the fullest – both their personal and professional lives, without ignoring calls/ demands of the either.

    This is however my personal take on the subject, which is re-inforced by my experience of more than three decades.


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