These words clearly state the cost of following Jesus. This invitation to the crowd held a supreme price -- death of self. "It's the end of you -- your dreams, hopes, ambitions, goals. The gospel is not about self-fulfillment; it's about self-denial" (John MacArthur, The MacArthur Daily Bible, p.ix).
To deny yourself means "to refuse to associate with." Coming to Christ means that you refuse to associate with the person that you are. You are sick of yourself and your sin and in desperation you willingly surrender that empty life that you no longer desire to associate with.
How extreme is this commitment? It involves taking up your cross daily. "In the ancient world, the cross only meant one thing -- a painful, horrible, shameful death" (Ibid., MacArthur, p.ix).
Is this the price that you have paid to follow Jesus? Remember Jesus said, "If you want to follow Me, it's the death of you."