Recently I was speaking with the son of a friend of mine, Jim. He bartends for a living and mentioned that he was launching a blog to earn money. Since I follow @problogger and have been studying blog monetization for awhile, I asked a few questions. The answers I got back, amazed me. Jim is half my age and while interestingly he is a rare non-tech in his generation, he is acting as someone twice his age would about technology and how to do this. He has a friend doing this for free (and it sounded like it was the long and hard way.) There is no deadline; he hasn’t studied how to make money from it beyond adwords (largely ineffective according to what I’ve read), and when I offered resources and solid advice he was largely uninterested. This struck me as a classic case of self sabotage.
The reality is that you can set up a blog literally in the space of an hour or two on WordPress for free. Buying a template is a nominal $60-$160, if you want one (there are several available at no charge.) Jim kept talking about how much this would cost because it is being built on an old school platform. Okay, I digress, this isn’t about setting up a blog, but it is about how to avoid and eliminate self sabotage to hasten the arrival of success. Let’s dive in!
#1 Be open to new ways of doing things. Tried and true is never the only way to do anything and may not be the best way. With the rapid advent of technology, there are almost always better, faster, and easier ways to do things than there were even 6 months ago. Let go of your resistance to new, be willing to experiment.
#2 Accept help when offered. Too often you are going out there like the Lone Ranger determined to do it all yourself. I know I do. This isn’t necessary. There are scores of people, some you know, and some you haven’t yet met, that have the knowledge, experience, and generosity to teach you or tell you how to do what you want to do.
#3 Paid is faster than free. This is a tough lesson to learn but how often do you get a friend to do something only to find it either never gets done, they don’t share your sense of urgency, they didn’t see the finished project the same way you did. Save your friendships and get a professional. They exist at all levels of the market and all levels of expertise. You may not be able to invest in the top of the market but you can surely find a way to afford the best at your level. If you are going to use barter, use a formal and professional barter network.
#4 Set a deadline. Do you find that your projects tend to keep getting pushed back? Setting a hard and fast deadline can be a challenge by yourself. It is often easy to let ourselves slide into oblivion on getting things done. Don’t. Establish a deadline and stick to it, break the project down into bite size pieces and keep track of your progress.
#5 Make the world your accountability partner. Now this can be a bit scary but the more people you share your goal with, the more you will be accountable to. Imagine having to tell everyone you didn’t get your project done, you missed the deadline. UGH! Letting as many people know as you can is a sure cure. An easy way to do this is online, tell your networks what you are working on (no secrets given away but perhaps you are writing an ebook, knocking out an article, or launching a new program) and then tell them when they can expect to see it!
#6 Mentor Someone. Mentoring is one of the fastest and most effective ways to get ahead in any field. By having a mentor you have an advocate and an example all in one. Modeling success is a superior shortcut to achieving. Don’t reinvent the wheel, instead see who else has gotten where you want to go and mentor them.
Now that you know six key ways to stop the train wreck of self sabotage, go forth and succeed! Your feedback and comments are always welcome.