"Success isn't easy -that's why so few people reach great heights. The vast majority of people are easily discouraged by the inevitable failures that a road to success includes." -Herta Von Stiegal, The Mountain Within.
I think in today's world, the western world in particular, more and more people are striving for instant gratification; unwilling to work hard enough or suffer enough to defer their gratification. In doing so they end up settling for less, and for some, this realisation can hit them too late.