A Not-So-New Success Principle

A Not-So-New Success Principle

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

Today I want to talk about a success principle that’s not so new. But people take it for granted.  

If you want to know what keeps people poor, keep reading.  

If you want to know what makes people comfortable, keep reading.  

They’re the same thing.  

“It’s only after you’ve stepped outside your comfort zone that you begin to change, grow, and transform.”   

― Roy T. Bennett  

You see, we love comfort.  

We love what’s comfortable, and that’s what we grew up with.  

Our parents made sure that we’re comfortable. Friends made sure that we’re comfortable. We made sure that we’re comfortable. We’ll do anything to be comfortable.  

And we’ll do anything to be successful too, but…  

That doesn’t seem to add up.  

Comfort and success don’t go well hand-in-hand. Well, it might seem like it as we can see with successful people.  

They drive nice cars; they go on luxurious vacations. Their days don’t need them to set an alarm and wake up before 9 am or there’ll be some consequences at work.  

They have a nice home. They can do whatever they want, whenever they want it. And it doesn’t matter how much something is.  

Isn’t that great? Isn’t that the definition of comfort?  

It can be.  

But it didn’t always been that way.  

If you can trace their history, you’ll discover there had been a lot of uncomfortable roads they had to go through.  

There were a lot of tough decisions they had to make, there was a lot of risks they had to face.  

Now, that’s uncomfortable.  

You see, one of the biggest, and most important aspect of growth is discomfort.  

Why? There’s no growth inside your comfort zone.   

Read this and drill this down your mind.  

If you truly want success as much as you think you do, remember this:  

If you’re currently comfortable with where you are and with what you’re doing, you’re not growing.  

Got that?  

It simply means that if you’re not experiencing any discomfort right now, you’re basically stuck.  

So, does that mean you’ll go looking for discomfort all the time? No.  

You’ll know when to go for it, and when to rest.  

How? Listen to your intuition. That may be another article of itself but that’s the only sure way to know you’re guided.  

There might be decisions you had to face before, a choice you had to make where one choice is scarier than the rest.  

And you get that nagging feeling that this scary choice is the right choice.  

Two things can happen:  

First, you choose the way that requires less work, less mind power, less stress. The comfortable route. No growth, no pain, no gain.  

Second, you jumped and chose the way that required work, time, mind power, and stress. This is the growth route. You felt discomfort, but I’m sure you learned something along the way. And that’s important.  

Now, you want success. Imagine this with me, imagine you’re where you want to be. You’re successful and happy. You’re rich and confident. People respect you.   

Look in the mirror and look at yourself. Is that person the same person as you in the present?  

I don’t think so, because if it does, then why are you not successful right now?  

It’s because the person you are right now, and the successful person you want to be, is not the same person.  

The person you want to be is someone who has grown enough to tackle the challenges that he/she may face. It requires someone who’s bold enough to do life-changing decisions. And someone who takes calculated risks.  

In short, the person you want to be is a person who is comfortable with discomfort.  And you should be that person.  

How to Be Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable  

How?  

Trust Your Intuition  

As I’ve said before, there might be times when you had to make a choice, a scary one, or a comfortable one.  

You are a person who knows you should grow. That’s why you’re here. The only thing you need to do is to step up and actually do something.  

Pick the scary choice. Your ego wouldn’t like it, your ego likes to keep you safe. But your intuition and your true self will love it. Because choosing the uncomfortable route… 

With enough caution and risk management… 

Will make you grow as a person.  

And you will understand how it happens if you’re mindful.  

What else can you improve?  

This idea of leaving your comfort zone… 

It is not only applicable when you’re chasing financial success.  

It also applies to when you want to improve other areas of your life. Such as your health or your relationships.  

If you want to be healthy, you need to be uncomfortable. Because you’ll need to eat foods you don’t like or even never eaten before. Or stop eating foods you like. You need to do some physical exercises. That’s not exactly comfortable, is it?  

If you want to make your relationship better, you need to do uncomfortable things too. You need to talk to your partner, or your child, about the things you haven’t talked to before. Things you’re uncomfortable to talk about.  

See how being uncomfortable makes you a better person? 

By the way, if you want to make success to easily come to you, check HERE!

How to Get More Kindle Book Reviews

How to Get More Kindle Book Reviews

When I suggest to Amazon authors that they seek reviews, the biggest objection I hear is, “But the more reviews I get, the greater the chances that I’ll get negative reviews.” Understandably, negative reviews are scary. But if you write a good book that either helps people or entertains them (or both) then two things will happen…

1. The positive reviews will greatly outnumber the negative reviews, thereby ‘negating’ the negatives.

2. The negative reviews can actually help sales.

For one thing, if you have negative reviews then your positive reviews become much more believable. Have you ever landed on a product with 400 positive reviews and NO negatives? Pretty hard to believe those are all real reviews, isn’t it?

And for another thing, ‘an enemy of my enemy is my friend’ Meaning, some negative reviews, when read by the right prospects, will actually convince prospects to purchase your book.

Here’s an example: Someone from political party ‘A’ writes a book. A member of political party ‘B’ writes a bad review, citing things in the book they didn’t like. But those things appeal to the prospect (who happens to be a part of Party ‘A’) and this is enough to nudge them into buying the book.

In other words, if you’ve written a good book then DON’T worry about negative reviews. On the other hand, if your book stinks then you might want to pull the book, rewrite it and relaunch it under a different title.

Lastly, why do you want more reviews of your Kindle books? Two words – more sales. The more reviews you have, the more popular your book looks, the more sales you will get. Plus, reviews are some of the best kind of social proof you can get.

Here then, are 8 ways to get more reviews of your Kindle books

– Write a good book. Seriously. If you write junk, your readers will be inspired to tell the world in reviews. But if you write a great book, again some of them will be inspired to tell the world in reviews.

Tiss: Practice makes perfect, so write a lot and you’ll get better and better. Add your own voice and personality – this makes it far more interesting to the reader. Get someone to edit and proofread the book for you.

– Write a short book. Most people finish reading a book before they write a review. Thus, if you have an 80,000 word book versus a 10,000 word book, all else being equal the 10,000 word book will get more reviews. Of course if you’re writing fiction, you might have to make it long since it’s expected.

Tip: If you already have an 80,000 word manuscript, break it into 4 or even 8 smaller books and charge less per book. Then cross promote your books for more sales.

– Ask for a review. Okay, this is really basic but most authors still don’t do it. At the end of your book, ask your reader to help you out and write a review. Remind them that they got the book at a great price, and if it helped them or entertained them, they can return the favor and really help you out with a review.

Tips: Let them know it will only take them a couple of minutes to do it. Provide the link where they can leave the review.

– Build a following. If you don’t already have one, build a list. Then when you put out a new Kindle book, ask them to review it.

Tips: Give your book away for free to your list and ask them to review it. OR give your book away for free to strangers on Amazon and ask them to sign onto your list – then ask them to review it. Either way, once you’ve got some great reviews, stop giving your book away for free and start charging for it.

– Use an email signature. If you have a separate email account just to answer questions about your book, then use a signature to ask for reviews. People will write to you with questions about your topic. When you write back, it’s the perfect time to ask for a review in your email signature. Be sure to give the link, too. And even if you don’t have a separate email account, you can still copy and paste a request each time you answer an email from your book’s readers.

Tip: When someone writes just to praise you and your book, ask them in your reply email to post what they wrote to you as a review. Be sure to give them the link to make it as simple as possible. When they do post it, THANK them.

– Give your book away for free. Strange but true, the way Amazon’s algorithm works you can get a real boost to sales after giving your book away for free for 5 days. Plus you can get a lot of good reviews when you give your book away, which will also boost sales.

– Run a countdown deal. This is the new ‘free’ and can have the same boost to sales as giving your book away. Again the added downloads will boost you in Amazon’s search results, plus you should be getting added reviews as well, which will also help sales.

Use social media. Post reviews of your book on your social media accounts to promote your book. This will get eyeballs on your books and usually sales, too. With more sales you can ask for more reviews.

Tip: When you have a loyal following, post a negative review now and then to social media to get your fans riled up. Your fans will go to Amazon to vote the review ‘not helpful,’ and often times they’ll even post a new review themselves.

One more reason to increase your reviews – publishing deals. If you get two or more books to each garner several hundred reviews, you might have a chance at getting a lucrative publishing offer.

If you do, think hard before you sign. Often times you can make more money by self-publishing than you can by going through a publishing house. But if they’re offering a large sum upfront and a great marketing plan for your new book – then you might want to take it.

Embrace Uncertainty

Embrace Uncertainty

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

Emma was doing okay on her corporate job. It was enough to make a day to day living together with her live-in partner Jason. 

Because they were both young, Emma held on to her corporate job. Even if what she loves to do is writing. She has no opportunity to write at all on her job. She can’t do what she loves. 

What she wants to be is a freelance writer. And because Jason is still hunting for a job, she’s trapped within her situation. 

She wanted to try freelance writing on the side while she’s still working on her full-time job. But it’s becoming too tiring for her. She also has to maintain the apartment that they’re living at.  

Thankfully, after 4 months, Jason was accepted on a minimum paying job. 

“It’s something.” Emma thought. It’s not ideal, but at least, they had some funds to live by day by day. 

The thought of quitting her corporate job is becoming more vivid. 

But as it happens to the best of us, uncertainty crept up her mind and stopped her in her tracks. 

But you know, there’s a way to use uncertainty to our advantage. And use it as a strength, not as a weakness. 

Rewire your mind about these 4 things to embrace uncertainty. 

Rewire your mind about risks 

We are afraid of something we don’t know. We are afraid of discomfort. But with discomfort comes growth. 

Take your time and learn how to take calculated risks. And learn to take baby steps towards your learning zone or growth zone. Learn how to venture outside your comfort zone. 

If you take time analyzing the situations, you’ll find that the benefits far outweigh the costs. 

The lessons you can take from each experience is worth the discomfort and fear you faced. 

Affirmations to help you rewire your mind about risks: 

  • I take calculated risks and I enjoy growing. 
  • I grow because I venture outside of my comfort zone. 
  • I grow because I face my fear. 
  • I love going out of my way to actually live life and take risks. 
  • I make it a habit to do something unfamiliar each day. 

Rewire your mind about the idea of imperfection 

We tend to hide behind the idea of perfection. 

But you’ll be able to see that when you reveal yourself behind the curtains of perfection… 

When you reveal yourself as an imperfect human being, you’ll be able to see the beauty within. 

The reality, the realness, the ‘true self’. That’s who you are. And that’s what you should be. Don’t try to be anyone else but yourself. 

Affirmations to help you rewire your mind about the idea of imperfection: 

  • I love myself, and this is who I am, I love me for me. 
  • I love myself and I see myself as beautiful. 
  • I am as real as I can and I am beautiful. 
  • I love myself because I am real and beautiful. 
  • My beauty shines because I am real and unique. 

Rewire your mind about the approval of others 

We all want others’ approval. We want to be loved and accepted. But growth means accepting yourself first. 

To see yourself for what you’re really worth. That’s the secret ingredient of self-growth and self-love. Well, it’s not really a secret but it’s easier said than done. 

To help you with this, you can start a self-love journal. Just jot down everything you love about yourself. Jot down your accomplishments for the day, your past achievements, etc… 

Take note of everything did right. Take note of everything you love about yourself. Take note of what other people love about you.  

What are the compliments you receive most of the time? 

You should be a standalone player. You should be able to take on the world alone. Have that strength. And uncertainty will have nothing against you. 

Affirmations to rewire your mind about the approval of others: 

  • I grow in self-love every day. 
  • I take note of every great thing about myself. 
  • I know what I am capable of. And I am capable of great things. 
  • I grow in self-confidence day by day. 
  • Every day in every way, I’m getting better as a person. 

Rewire your mind about yourself 

Almost the same as the two points above.  

What I simply want to say is that you should know that you are enough as you are.  

You don’t need anything else. You don’t need anyone else. You can do it. You are equipped. 

And once you know that… 

You’ll be on your path to growth. 

You’ll have the courage to pursue what you want to pursue. 

Facing your fear will be easier. 

Discomfort will become the norm. 

And growth will become your game. 

Affirmations to rewire your mind about yourself: 

  • I am enough, I love myself. 
  • I know I am equipped with everything, I can do what I love to do. 
  • I can do everything I put my heart and mind to. 
  • I am growing every day because I love myself. 
  • I embrace uncertainty and discomfort because that’s growth. 

Like Emma, once you’re thinking about taking the leap. Don’t hesitate. Know that you’re always guided by that tingling feeling of ‘I should be doing that, and not this…’ Trust your gut. 

Basically, you can’t expect change to happen if you don’t change anything. 

While it can be scary. It’s growth. And that’s what you want as a person, to grow. 

By the way, if you want to get a head start on the way to your success…

Check this out: http://30mwd.OnlineAcademyTraining.com

Making Video Products Easy!

Making Video Products Easy!

Even if you’ve never made a video before in your life, you can do this. And once you have your videos, you can sell them, use them as lead magnets, use them as bonuses to affiliate products and so forth. You can even use them to establish your authority and credibility in your marketplace.

Here’s how you can quickly start making your own video products:

– Download the free screen capture video program called Snagit. You can download it at TechSmith or Google to find other websites that offer it.

– Decide on what kind of video or video set you’re making and the purpose of it. Is it a training? Or an info product? How about a video for a sales page, or maybe a lead generator on YouTube. It could be the video you put on your squeeze page, or the incentive you use to get people to join your list.

If you’re making a product, then keep it simple. Look at what is already selling so you’ll know ahead of time that there is a market for your new product. Look at what Kindle titles are selling, what info products are selling and so forth.

– Now that you know what you’re going to make, break it down into steps. If you’re making a product, for example, then break it down into problem, analysis and solution. Each step will be one video of 5 minutes or less. If one of the steps takes longer than 5 minutes to explain, then break that step into two videos. Think of these as video mini-trainings.

– Create 3 to 4 PowerPoint or Keynote slides for each step, or plan a short demo for each step. If you’re using PowerPoint, then choose ‘browse by individual’ so it can be resized to any size screen. Write the steps as bullet points. Use 3 to 4 bullet points per slide.

– Open up Snagit and narrate as you make your video. The bullet points cue you as to what to say for each slide. Just talk your way through each step as though you were talking to someone there in the room.

– Once you’ve got your videos, you can either host them on your site, use a hosting service like Amazon, or place them on another site like YouTube. As you upload each video, grab the URL and paste it into a Word document in order: Step 1, Step 2 and so forth. Obviously if this is a paid product, you’ll want your videos to be hosted somewhere out of the public eye.

– Write short narrative descriptions for each video and place them above the corresponding links in your word document, to let your readers or buyers know what each video is all about. This document will act as your introduction to your product.

– Then save the document as a PDF. If you’re selling the series, you can deliver the PDF, and buyers can click the links and watch the videos.

You can even give away the first videos, and then offer to sell them access to the remaining videos. For example, on your PDF you show the first 3 video links, then you have descriptions of the rest of the videos but no links. If they buy the product, they get the links to those videos.

It’s a very simple way to make a video product, and you can do it all in less than a day.

Snagit can be used for a lot more than making products, and it’s an excellent way for new marketers to play with video and get results very, very quickly.

What Is Happiness, Really?

What Is Happiness, Really?

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

Let me start this article by saying this…

Happiness is not that happy feeling you get every time you’re laughing so hard it makes your tummy ache.

It is only a part of that, and it is more than that.

Before I get to what it is, let me first show you what it is not:

Being happy does not mean you won’t suffer anymore.

Think of someone you know that is happy and successful.

Do you think that person is not experiencing any suffering anymore?

He’s got all this money, he’s got all these connections and all these resources. He can solve his problems easily. Right?

Well, maybe. Maybe he can solve his problems easier than what is required out of us. But that doesn’t mean he’s not experiencing suffering anymore.

Being happy does not mean you always have that joyful feeling.

Imagine a day full of laughter, 100% of the time, 100% of the time. Fun, right?

But do you think this is even possible? Your mind will bog you down with stress no matter how good your day is.

Being happy does not mean you turn your back on your problems.

To follow up on my first point, running away won’t make you happy. It will just make the problems worse.

Now that you know what happiness is not, then what is it?

Life is suffering. You might have heard that phrase before. It’s from Buddhist teaching. And it’s true. I’m not telling you this to break your rose-colored glasses and be an all-time pessimist.

Happiness is finding something worthy to suffer for.

Doesn’t sound right? Let me rephrase…

Happiness is about finding and sticking to your WHY.

Now, you’ve heard that before, I assume.

Let me tell you a story about Johnson…

He’s a great guy, winning small tennis competitions here and there. But when I say winning, I mean he gets the podium, but he just can’t get the gold medal.

And he’s always frustrated about that. It saps out his happiness. He trains, he always does.

But he trains in frustration, anger, jealousy, and anxiety.

He’s not emotionally healthy. And it’s because he thinks of happiness the other way around.

“If only I can get that gold, if only I can stand in the first place, then I’ll be happy.”

Now that will bring unhappiness to him, and everyone who thinks the same way.

Drop your IBHW and IO mindset.

I’ll be happy when… or If only this and that… then I’ll be happy.

Take a complete U-turn and realize that you can be happy now.

When I told that to Johnson, it was a hard pill to swallow. His mind came up with reasons to protect him from the unknown.

He was baffled, “how?”.

But soon he realized the answer. He took his pain and his suffering and decided that it’s worth it. Because he loves tennis. He loves training, he loves competing.

Now, he still gets 2nd place. He only won the gold twice since the last we talked. But he’s happy.

He’s still suffering and still in pain while he’s training. But that suffering and pain are just pushing him to train harder and train smarter. That’s why he got the gold twice.

And I know he’ll keep working on it as long as it’s rooted in his values that he loves tennis that much. That he can endure the suffering, the pain, and push forward.

He still gets heartbroken whenever he loses a match…

He still feels the feeling he should feel, sadness, pain, and a little bit of grief. But he gets over that. And while he’s in that stage, he knows he will get over that. And he does.

This might seem like a boring cycle for someone like us because we might not love tennis as much as Johnson does.

But this cycle of suffering, accomplishment, and fulfillment means happiness to him.

Happiness is also tied into fulfillment by the way. And fulfillment will only come if you’re working for something worth it. Even if it entails suffering, pain, and hurdles along the way.

You won’t be able to eradicate your problems. You can’t live pain-free. But you can be happy.

In fact, happiness is easy.

5 Tips on How to Communicate with Your Boss

5 Tips on How to Communicate with Your Boss

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

Communication is a skill. This is not like other things in life that sit in a gray area, where there’s no right or wrong answer.

There actually is a wrong and a right way of speaking to people.

If you want your message to be clear and to be received well, you need to learn how to talk to people in the language that they would most understand.

You need to get in the mindset of your audience to be able to communicate clearly what you want. Don’t leave room for misunderstanding.

The workplace is a sensitive environment. You have subordinates, peers, clients, and of course the bosses. Most people know how to talk to the first three, but the last one is where it gets tricky.

Talking to your boss is intimidating simply because they outrank you and they sign your paychecks. Nobody wants to jeopardize that.

Add an intimidating personality to that and you’ve got employees afraid to speak their minds.

Here are some ways you can communicate effectively with your boss.

Tip #1 – Write it down

A good tip is to write down your speech. Prepare for it like you would a proposal.

Cover all your bases—try to anticipate all the questions he might ask. When you’ve figured out the details, that’s when you construct the padding.

You don’t need to suck up to him with compliments and such, but you do need to find the right kind and the right amount of fluff to go with your pitch.

If you’re trying to break bad news, you need to find the silver lining and present it to them instead of letting them search for it themselves.

Tip #2 – Honesty is your priority

Be upfront about what you want or need from your boss. There’s nothing they hate more than wasting time.

If your points aren’t clear and they don’t know what it is that you need from them, chances are, they won’t respond well to your request.

Be as direct as you can be and don’t leave room for misunderstanding. If there’s anything that wasn’t understood correctly, it’s going to be on you.

Learn to be direct without coming off as arrogant.

Tip #3 – Confidence helps

In line with Tip #2, you need to at least show that you’re confident in yourself.

Whatever it is you’re asking for, be it a promotion, a salary raise, or a role in a new project, you need to show that you deserve it and that you believe that 101%.

If you can’t be confident in yourself, how do you expect your boss to feel the same way?

Body language is important too, so stand or sit up straight, don’t mumble, don’t look down, dress the part, and look them straight in the eye and go for it.

Tip #4 – Timing is essential

While it may be true for some situations that the best time to do anything is now, it’s not always taken in the right context. There is such a thing as better timing.

If you’re going to bring up a sore topic or a sensitive issue with your boss, you need to consider if he’s been in a good mood lately—if his personal life is not in a wonky place as far as you know, if he has been happy with people’s performances at work, if he’s been generous with department budgets, etc.

Tip #5 – Be responsible and accountable

You’ve got to show them that you have what it takes to take lead, at whatever cost.

If somehow things blow up in your face, be the first one to admit where it went wrong and what your plan is to make up for it.

If things go right, be humble, but be the face he associates with that victory. Be the employee he hired you for.

Build a reputation for being reliable and he will be more than willing to give you more responsibilities and more chances to put you on the map.

How to Create Extra Sales Easily

How to Create Extra Sales Easily

Okay, this one will take a little legwork, but it is work you’ll be doing anyway. Only this time, it will pay off double. Here’s how it works: Every marketer winds up hosting downloads, PDFs, zipped files, redirects, cloaked affiliate links, images and a bunch of other things. The way we do it is generally like this: yourdomain.com/buythisproductnow.

Now then, to make this work you’ll want to get a domain name that you use only for hosting all of this stuff. It should be a catchy name that directly pertains to your niche – something that arouses interest and curiosity all by itself. For example, TheNakedMarketer.com or TakeThisJobAndShoveIt.org.

Host everything on subdomains of this domain. As you get traffic to all of these subdomains, a funny thing is going to happen: You’re going to get traffic to your root domain as well. Even though you never send anyone there, people are going to get curious, lop off the part after the slash in your domain name and see what’s on the home page.

This is where you make your money. You can either put up a squeeze page that’s followed by a one time offer, or you can redirect it straight to an affiliate offer.

If you get 500 people a month going to this domain, and only one out of 5 joins your list, that’s still 1200 new subscribers a year. PLUS whatever sales you make from the one time offer. If you position your squeeze page correctly, you should get a conversion rate much, much closer to 50%.

Now then, if everyone you’re already sending to these downloads, redirects and so forth are already subscribers, then don’t use a squeeze page. Instead, redirect that domain straight to your highest converting offer of the moment. Even a handful of sales a month can translate into a thousand dollars or more per year, just for doing this one simple thing.

And since you have to place your downloads, redirects, cloaked links and everything else somewhere anyway, why not make some money from it?

3 Ways to Improve Work Performance

3 Ways to Improve Work Performance

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

There are simple ways in which you can boost your performance, and they don’t take much for you to do.

Your success in your career is determined by mostly how you feel about your chosen career and how you choose to execute it day in and day out.

Just as there is no such thing as a perfect life, there’s no such thing as a perfect career. But that shouldn’t stop you from making it as perfect for you as you can.

Tailor fitting your work to yourself is not impossible. In fact, that’s precisely how it should be.

Here are some ways you can improve your performance at work.

Be good at time management

If you get your ducks in a row first thing in the morning, you won’t be scrambling for more time at the end of the day to finish what you needed to be done.

Make it a habit to make lists of the things you need, then further index that list according to what you need to be done first, second, third, and so on.

Setting your priorities helps you improve your workflow. Your ability to react almost instinctively to knowing which ones to do first and getting those done is high on your employer’s list of premium qualities they value.

Your boss wants to know that he can delegate a task to you and walk away not worrying whether or not you can get it done right and on time.

Adopt a positive mentality

Many people fall into a routine of complaining about their job, their bosses, the commute to and from the workplace, blah blah blah. Well, if you want to be successful at your job, you best stop finding things to complain about.

Start appreciating your job! A lot of people don’t have one, for starters, so be thankful that you’re in a position of privilege.

While the day to day can be tedious, boring, and downright foul sometimes, at the end of the workday, it allows you to pay for the life you’re living. The least you could do is not badmouth what keeps you alive.

Wake up energized to seize the day! Don’t think about the slow commute; instead, think about the sites you see on your way to work.

Even if it’s just the morning traffic or people lining up for the subway, find the beauty in it.
Your output is all based on how you perceive your life.

Seek greater knowledge

In every field, there’s a constant development in techniques, in research, in materials, etc., and you need to be on top of that to stay on top.

If you’re a doctor, you need to acquaint yourself with new technology that helps you be more accurate or research that corrects a predated one. If you’re a lawyer, you need to be in the know about new laws being passed.

If you’re a food critic, you need to know the latest trends, the places to eat, the latest food craze.

Working at your craft will give you the edge you need to survive and to thrive. Always take the opportunity to learn something new.

How to Build a Business from Scratch

How to Build a Business from Scratch

Someone asked me what I would do if I had to start my business over from scratch in 3 months. And that got me thinking – if I could take the experience I have and use it to start over from scratch, how would I do it?

Mind you, I wouldn’t have my mailing list. I wouldn’t have traffic, a following, name recognition – none of that. Just my experience as to what works and what doesn’t.

And let’s say that my life depends on me having a full time income at the end of those 3 months. No pressure there, right? But a lot of people find themselves in a very similar situation – make money or else. Or else they’re in trouble, or else the bills go unpaid, or else they’re facing losing their home, or… worse.

So with that in mind, here’s what I would do:

– I would stop looking for magic ‘make money online’ products and ideas. There is no secret combo of tricks and buttons to make money. It’s not a printing press. It’s a free market. And in that free market the way to make money is to stop focusing on the money, and simply make yourself indispensable to people who need your solution to their problem. Do that and the money follows.

When you’re focused on providing solutions, you no longer get distracted by all those shiny programs that steal your time and your money. I’m not saying all programs are bad. In fact, many of the “how-to” and “step-by-step” are useful as small pieces to the large puzzle. But that’s what they are – puzzle pieces – not full blown businesses.

– I would start with the outcome first. What is my market? My product or service? My goal? What is the solution I can provide that people will gladly pay for? What is THE ONE BIG BENEFIT I can provide to my customers? This is the starting point of everything that will come next.

– Next I would build my website. Odds are it’s going to be a blog. I’m not going to spend a world of time on setting this up because I only have 3 months. I’ll spend an hour maximum choosing the URL, I’ll get the hosting, I’ll choose a simple, streamlined theme, I’ll get the autoresponder and I’ll be ready to get started.

Yes, it takes money to get started. Not a lot, but some. You’re making an investment into your future. And if you think spending a couple of hundred dollars to set up your internet business is somehow a lot of money, consider the alternative: Spending at least that much each month just to drive to and from a job, or spending thousands for a brick and mortar business.

– Time to create content for that blog. But this isn’t about running a blog, it’s about running a business. The blog is just the tool to get the business done. So here’s what I would do: Look at the big benefit I deliver, and then write down all the stumbling blocks people encounter trying to get that big benefit. Then pick out 3 of these and write stellar posts on how to overcome those barriers. Then repurpose those posts into videos and podcasts, as well as an incentive to get people to join my list.

Notice I’m only creating 3 pieces of great content, not 300. And I’m repurposing those. Some folks spend years trying to get everything just right, but I’ve only got 3 months, so forget perfect and just get it done.

– Next, I would offer a service or coaching. Do you know why? Because it’s the quickest way to make real money. Offering products is great, but it takes time to create the products and more time to build the lists to promote the product to. When your list is small, it’s best to focus on services or coaching because it’s the fastest way to profit.

The blog posts should be highly focused on getting my prospects to take the next step, which is likely going to be a free consultation. It’s not easy to sell a $300 a month coaching program or a $1,000 website optimization package online. But it can be if you get them on the phone first.

– Now I’d focus on getting as many people on the phone as I can, because I know two things: The more prospects I get on the phone, the more likely it is some of them will say yes. Plus, I’ll get better and better at finding out their needs and selling them on the solutions.

– With my first customers or clients I would deliver like a madman (or mad woman.) I’d blow them away and earn myself raving testimonials which I would then use to earn more clients.

I’d also be Mr. or Ms. Communication, with both my clients and everyone else on my list and in social media. If someone writes to me, I answer quickly. If they mention me in social media, I am thanking them the same day and so forth. This is a people business and my goal is to please the people and thus build my name and my reputation.

– As I’m servicing my clients, I’m learning what they need and want. And I’m using that information to create my first product which I will then sell to my list, and hopefully through affiliates for a long time to come.

Selling time for money is a great way to get started, but as soon as possible you want to be creating assets that you use to systematize your sales funnel and your income.

– Time to focus on traffic and more traffic. Social media, guest blog posting and paying for advertising are methods that can be used long term to drive people to your site and onto your lists. Each one has a learning curve, but as you improve you’ll see quick returns for your time and monetary investments.

And I’d build relationships with other marketers in my niche. Almost nothing drives good quality traffic faster than an expert in your niche telling their list about you or your offer.

– Lastly, I would continually strive to improve the benefits I deliver to my customers. Great today is only good tomorrow and not good enough the day after. I know I have to stay on top of my market and provide my customers with what they need and want even before they know they need and want it.

Bottom Line: By delivering the solutions people seek, I can build a fully functioning business in a short amount of time. And yes, by diligently following these steps, you too might be earning a full-time income in 3 months.

3 Reasons Why Routine is Unhealthy

3 Reasons Why Routine is Unhealthy

By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews

There is a smorgasbord of clichés for those who choose the path always taken. The safe ones are sick of hearing them over and over from friends who want to get them out of their shells.

But there is truth and beauty in those sage words.

Here are some reasons why routine might kill you sooner than jumping out of a flying plane.

#1. Routine Kills Creativity

Whether your job relies on it or not, you can’t live without a degree of creativity. Everything you do on a daily basis has some sort of creative input in it.

Baristas in coffee shops, even if the formula is already tried and tested, they inject a certain flair for how they execute your coffee.

Maybe it’s in the way they flick their wrists to put on that choco powder, or the foam art they put as a special finishing touch.

Bankers/Stockbrokers execute creativity in finding you the best way to invest your money.

Engineers or architects design and build houses using their visual intelligence.

So if you engage in a monotonous ritual, chances are, you won’t be able to expand your creative horizon.

You won’t see influences on your way to work or meet quirky new people on the streets or at parties if you choose the same route all the time.

The art of discovery can be practiced everywhere. Your neighborhood can both be your subject and your guide.

Expose yourself to different elements.

#2. Stifles Growth

If you aren’t compelled to explore new avenues of interest or at least follow through with whatever tickles your fancy even for just a moment, you will never be able to move out of your comfort zone in any aspect of your life.

For example, if you feel like you’ve already peaked in your chosen field, but you’re too afraid to venture into another career, you’ll end up choosing the path you’ve already walked.

You’ll go around in circles doing the same thing. Instead of starting from scratch and learning new things, you’ll stay stuck somewhere that stopped offering you something new for quite some time.

If this is the situation you find yourself in, you need to force yourself to branch out.

Don’t waste your time and your life being somewhere you’ve already been. Life is always opening up new opportunities.

Do yourself a solid and take chances!

#3. Gives a False Sense of Security

Everybody seems to be working for a stable future. One where money will not be a problem.

Although this is a responsible way of thinking, and it’s good to have a backup plan, it shouldn’t stop you from taking risks in the present.

Securing your future doesn’t necessarily mean anchoring yourself to something in your present.

Yes, a steady job that offers no growth can help you save up for the future, but if it’s slowly killing you now, there might not be a future to spend on.

Before you think about securing your future, secure your present first.

How do you do this?

By knowing you can never really be secure enough to start something new, something potentially risky.

If your fear of an unstable future is what’s keeping you from moving towards anything right now, then you’re creating a false send of security for yourself.

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