Why You Aren’t Successful Yet (Ep. 219)

It’s easier than ever before to feel like a failure. Anywhere you look, you can find scores of people half your age but twice as successful. What happened?

Is it just an illusion? Another effect of everyone showing only their best selves online? Well, yes, and no. There are still people doing amazing things much earlier than I could have imagined. So what gives?

And more importantly, can we do anything to catch up?

Never fear — obviously, I wouldn’t want this to be an episode if the answer was, ‘nah, you should probably give up now.’

This week, we’re taking a moment to talk about the various pieces of success. After that, it’s up to you to do whatever it takes to make mom proud.

Things mentioned in this episode:

This week’s episode is sponsored by:

  • Brilliant: Accelerate your learning in math, science, and computer science. Start learning for free at Brilliant.org/CollegeInfoGeek — and if you’re one of the first 83 people to use this link, you’ll also get 20% off your subscription.

Other things we mentioned in this episode:

Want more cool stuff? You can find all sorts of great tools at my Resources page.


  • 0:02:24 – Success is often circumstantial and being more optimistic
  • 0:28:26 – Try to be patient and keep striving for success
  • 0:31:32 – Sponsor: Brilliant (Learning problem-solving skills)
  • 0:34:07 – Being more selective with your ideas and sources of information
  • 0:39:48 – Blaming the wrong things for your lack of success and being envious of others
  • 0:51:38 – Giving up too early and not finishing your projects
  • 0:56:38 – Defining what success means to you and putting effort into it
  • 1:02:40 – Recap and conclusion

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Why You Aren’t Successful Yet

Martin Boehme is a web developer, language nerd, and Nintendo fanboy. Talk to him in English, Spanish, French, or very basic Japanese on Twitter.

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