Have you been trying to start an Internet business and find yourself broke, desperate and coming to the end of your tether?
Well, you're not alone.
Here are samples of correspondence that I've received from folks who are in exactly that situation.
” …I have bought so many books I have lost count and am now so totally confused (and broke) about what to do I'm just about to give up.”
” …I am twenty years old and entirely dependent on myself. I have no parents and I am out on my own trying to make my way in this cruel world. I struggle to get by with my current job as a bus boy and I am tired of living from paycheck to paycheck. I am currently out of school and wish to go back but I do not have the time nor the money. I have dreams but do not have the time nor the money to pursue them.”
” …I am a parent, divorced and am struggling to make ends meet. I cannot quit my job.”
” …I desperately need more income.”
” …bill collectors hounding…”
” …I am a mom of six children and I have tried and spent thousands of dollars on trying to make money.”
” …as a two month veteran on the Internet I don't know if I can take another hit. I feel like I've been 10 rounds with Mike Tyson and I'm really thinking about staying on the canvas. Thousands of dollars later and I'm still on the starting line!”
” …invested thousands of dollars of my savings in the last two years in home business that I could not afford.”
” …burned really bad within the last two years for alot of money.”
Do those statements ring any bells for you?
OK…I want you to pinch yourself to confirm that you're still among the living.
Where there's life, there's hope.
(My mother taught me that.)
Now take a long, deep breath. Make that 10 deep breaths.
No, seriously. Close your eyes, breathe deeply and feel your body relax.
Relaxed? OK, here are some suggestions.
Don't Focus on Loss
Let go of the past. What's done is done. Unless you can recoup some of your money, learn the lesson, chalk it up to experience and move on.
Build a mental image of yourself as an extraordinarily happy and successful Internet entrepreneur
Trust me, this works.
Failing my first attempt at air traffic control training, I felt defeated, depressed and stupid. When given a second training opportunity, I was reluctant to try, fearful of failing again.
Then the little voice inside my head told me how much I really WANTED that job. I also wanted to prove that those who cast me aside the first time were wrong – that I COULD do that job.
But could I really?
It was time for some honest self-evaluation. What stumbling blocks had I put in my path? Was it lack of knowledge? Lack of effort? Not at all. I didn't honestly BELIEVE I could do it, AND I was intensely AFRAID of failing.
Yikes! What a great recipe for failure that was. I got exactly what I focused on most.
However, believing you can be successful at something when you've failed before is a bit of a trick.
It CAN be done, however. I adopted a ‘B.S. baffles brains' or ‘Fake it 'til you make it' approach. Every step of the way I asked myself what a REAL air traffic controller would do in that situation, and then did that. Even when I wasn't completely confident, I forced my voice to at least sound confident. I acted the part until it became my reality.
Eliminate as Much Debt as Possible
Because it's impossible to think clearly while worried about how to pay this month's rent, REAL entrepreneurs don't spend their last dime on an business opportunity.
If you're currently in serious debt, then consider talking to a financial planner to help rework your finances.
Leo Quinn's ‘Own Your Own PayCheck Again‘ is a terrific resource for those who are serious about debt relief. He prescribes uncommon methods that I know from first-hand experience really work.
His book is a bit pricey, but it's a far better investment than buying an information manual that instructs you to go out and spend even more to build your business, when you don't have it to spend. Why not learn some techniques on how to pay off your debt quicker and keep a little more in your pocket?
If you can afford to pay the bills but not much else, focus your energy on saving and earning the amount you'll need to build your business without worry. Invest small amounts on things that will bring real returns in the short term.
For example, scour your basement and your friends' basements for things to sell on eBay. The insertion fee for items listed at less than a buck is 25 cents US. If the item sells for under 25 bucks, you'll pay a 5.25% ‘final value fee' to eBay. Do that enough times and pretty soon you'll have five hundred or a thousand bucks to invest in your business… but only if you SAVE what you make.
Vist eBay now to see what's hot and selling.
Be Savvy about how you spend your money.
I've talked to far too many folks who invest in expensive coaching programs, believing that somehow their business will magically appear once they've completed the course.
In reality, whether you buy a $27.00 dollar, or a $5,000 Internet business coaching program, in most cases you're buying information on how to build a business, not a service that will do the work for you.
If that's what you want, then you may want to consider buying an existing business. However, it may be hard to find someone who has invested the time, effort and money to build a profitable online business, who is willing to sell. Basically, at that stage, the business should generate revenue automatically without a whole lot of input from the creator… so they'd be a little daft to sell, don't you think?
Do your due diligence
Read the fine print, ask questions and understand exactly what you're getting. And with regard to those coaching programs…. get a written contract, and search the forums for at least five people who have taken the program and were really happy with it… i.e. aren't just saying good things because they're trying to sell you the program through their link.
If you choose to go the information manual route, plan to follow ALL the instructions, or fail otherwise.
For everyone who ever told me “I bought this, that or the other book (or DVD, course, program, coaching package) and it didn't work”, it was easy to prove that it wasn't the book that didn't work – it was THEY that didn't work.
We can't expect to be successful with ugly websites, little or poor content, not building a list or not building a relationship with our visitors and subscribers.
The truth of the matter is that there are no shortcuts.
Each and every step is essential, and every successful netpreneur has paid his or her dues to get to where they are today. They did their homework, made mistakes, and learned the lessons – always believing in their ability to succeed.
Starting an internet business is still easier, faster and less expensive (by far) than starting an offline business. If you want to do it bad enough, you WILL find a way to make it work.