The hardest part about making the switch from, say, a traditional 9-5 job to working for yourself online, is the ability to stick with projects and even more importantly, letting them go. Since starting out online, I have participated no less than 10 different ways of making money online over a 6-month period. I have made money or broken even on pretty much everything, but the downside was the amount of time invested in some of these ideas. Nothing beats the time when I planned on writing and promoting ebooks.
I wrote wrote and wrote, only to discover I really didn't want to do that type of work. It was too labor intensive on the front end and there were no guarantees on making any money from the ebooks themselves. Think of your bottom line and how much time it is worth in order to earn that money. If you spend a lot of time just to earn a little return, you are fighting a losing battle.
On the other hand, if you have to spend 100 hours without seeing any profit in order to make much larger returns, that is the better deal. Most of successful work online involves more front end work and higher rewards after the time, energy and effort are put in. This is why most make money online schemes don't work, because they promise the returns before the effort.
Rarely is this ever true. Like I said in the earlier posts, there is no magic bullet. The key is determining when to hold onto those projects and goals as they start costing you more money and time than you had planned or anticipated for. For me, I like to make a plan and return to that plan even if it is just mentally to reassess where I am at in the process. If I feel directionless and unmotivated, it is probably because I have strayed from my original plan or I am realizing the cost benefit ratio is changing.
I really don't have a set guide for when to drop a project and when to keep it. I spent about 1 year working on an ebook site to help unpublished authors and ended up putting the idea on the shelf. That was a really hard thing for me to do, especially after all the work and time invested.
Fortunately, I had only invested a tiny sum of money into the project, mostly due to the limited budget. The project could have easily cost me a lot. It was a hard choice to tuck the idea away, knowing it would probably never see the light of day again, but I had a couple quiet secessions with myself.
I really dug deep and asked if that project was something I really wanted to pursuit, or did I want to cut my losses while they were still minimal and move on? I chose the latter and have been thankful ever since. On the reverse side, I made the choice to stick to my guns and pursuit other ideas that have paid off much more in the long run. It is a hard choice to stick with a dream as you are watching your bank account dip into the double digits territory and just hope that some of the auctions you have on eBay are enough to carry you through til things pan out. It was slowly becoming a reality that I might have to pick up a part-time job to make sure I was able to pay my bills. Just for future reference, potatoes are $.
67 a pound, hard not to be able to eat when some food is that cheap. I truly loved what I was pursuing and was going to stick with it until the last possible second. After being humbled by an extremely tight budget fit for a college student it did not take much to feel rich. This is why it is so important to be doing something you really love and would do even without pay. When times get hard, that desire to continue on will be the driving force to carry you through.
What separates most successful people from others is the ability to make it through the dip, because I can promise you there will be dips when you start to question your sanity. If you have forgotten what sunlight looks like it, might be time to reconsider how much effort you are putting into your project. I made the decision to have the freedom and lifestyle that working online allowed. Recently, I made a trip to visit and help family for 3 weeks, and nothing changed as far as my business was concerned. In fact, I saw a slight boom in business while away.
This is not always the case, depending on the kind of work you have chosen or are preparing to choose online. My goal was not to choose a line of work that I had to babysit on a regular basis but rather work that molded to my desires and lifestyle goals. Lifestyle design is a really important aspect of choosing what online ventures you pursuit. If you are interested in lifestyle design, I highly recommend Tim Ferriss's 4 Hour Work Week.
Having determination and a love for what you are doing is vital for making it through the rough times when things are highly uncertain. I lived off of about $800-900 a month for a few months in order to realize my dream of working online and the flexibility it brings. This is another reason to have a financial buffer while you make the switch.
My reasoning of quitting my job and jumping in head first was to force myself to really work from day 1 at making money. I made a sign and posted it right above my computer that read "will this make you money?" For me, it was sink or swim, because there was no way I was going to return to my previous job, and I was willing to do anything to avoid another job just like it. This was not the easiest way to make the switch and being young without many liabilities aided in my ability to approach my new career this way. I would highly recommend for anyone else thinking of making the switch to really analyze your situation and make the proper preparations to ensure your success. Mostly, that involves saving a lot of money or phase out the old job while phasing in your new career as it becomes more profitable.
I can't encourage you enough to pursuit your dreams, whatever they are. The neatest thing about those dreams and the things that you love is you can make good money doing what you would do for free for a friend. The biggest thing is asking the right questions and really targeting the people you most want to work with.
I love helping small businesses because I can relate with so many of them and their desire to succeed in what they do. I get a sense of reward and accomplishment watching others succeed and knowing I was able to assist them in their efforts.
Josh Whitford is a professional blogger and Internet marketer. I will tech you and others how to use unconventional marketing to reach your target audience. By using different ma