Complex's fascinating video series Blueprint is an intimate, one-on-one conversation with serious street culture tastemakers like Def Jam head Lyor Cohen, Dr. Dre collaborator Jimmy Iovine and comic book legend Seth McFarlane. The most remarkable moment surprisingly came from Scooter Braun, the manager who discovered Justin Bieber.
Braun was only 25 when he was housing both Bieber and his mother as well as rapper Asher Roth and his friends. He was paying for all their expenses while they looked for record deals - and, as he recounts, he was almost out of money.
I'm two months away from being done. I'm a failure and no one knows. I called my father, he asked me how it's going and I just broke down crying... The next day Asher came in and played me [the platinum single] I Love College and the publishing deal saved our company. It just shows you how close success and failure lie.
Take the right lesson
The real key is accepting this: You do not know how close you are to success. You can have fancy metrics, commentary from the peanut gallery and even public consensus, but you really do not know when your product, service or idea will ultimately break through.
Ask a different question
You shouldn't be asking if you should quit because, as Seth Godin says, you should establish when you are going to quit well ahead of when you're going to start. And, as Braun notes in the interview, he already knew when he was going to quit.
Instead, ask yourself "Am I the right person to do this thing and is it the right time to do this thing?" You may be perfect to bring something to the world, but the world may not understand the need yet. Or the idea could be rock solid, but you have not or will not grow into the person that is best to bring it to life.
Are you the right person to do this? Is it the right time for the world? And have you not hit your decided quitting point? Then, please, keep going. We need you.
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