Is Your Dream Worth the Pain?

Aaron Pace
3 min readMay 24, 2024
Photo by Vasily Koloda on Unsplash

My paternal grandfather kept a regular journal. He also held onto things of particular interest to him. Some time after his passing in 2011, my dad was searching through grandpa’s things and found a time-worn piece of paper with a quote scrawled across it in my grandpa’s handwriting:

The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night.

It’s one of those quotes that falls into the overuse category among productivity gurus.

For many of them, the mantra is that you won’t get anywhere in life unless you’re burning both ends of the candle with the midnight oil.

There is no question, achieving anything requires effort. Often, to accomplish anything extraordinary requires enormous effort.

Emily Dickinson — the prolific American poet — wrote some 1,800 poems during her 55 years. Nearly all of those poems never saw the light of day, and those that did were often heavily edited; some even published without proper credit. In fact, evidence suggests that only 10 poems and a single letter were published during her lifetime with proper attribution.



Aaron Pace

Married to my best friend. Father to five exuberant children. Fledgling entrepreneur. Writer. Software developer. Inventory management expert.