I love sweets. Crave chocolate. Can’t get enough candy. It is the reason why I can’t have any sweets in my home. If I did, food would go untouched.
Yes. I know. Eating so many sweets is not healthy. I’ll get fat, my teeth will rot, and I’d be lucky to avoid diabetes. Or so my mother says.
Yet… it’s almost as if the candy bowl has an irresistible, invisible attraction over me. It beckons me to enjoy the high that follows the sugary dose.
Why do I bring this up? Recently, I caught myself in an emotional roller-coaster. You see, I was caught up in a blog-reading frenzy.
You know the deal. You open up your e-mail just for “a quick check“, or maybe you take a peek at your Twitter account and there they are. Tons of RSS feeds in your inbox, or more than a few unread Twitter posts by your favorite bloggers.
What to do, what to do?
You scan the subject lines and there are a few interesting posts. Or maybe a funny/controversial/insightful/etc. tweet catches your eye. Well, you’ve got to click it and see what it’s about, right?
And there we are. Caught up reading the comments, digesting the ideas, and enjoying the banter. And there we are… again… building somebody else’s brand but our own.
Turns out, being an entrepreneur is exciting. But it is also filled with hard work. Don’t let the success of others fool you. They worked just as hard to get to where they are. The key is that you must enjoy what you do, or else it becomes a chore. But I digress.
Anyone that tells you that it’s easy, either hasn’t done it, or has enough money to pay someone else to do the hard work for them. No lie, I’d rather be in the second group, but I suspect most of us are all in the first boat together out of necessity, not choice.
Whenever you read an excellent post or article, remember that it did not write itself. The author, more than likely, put a lot of effort into delivering high-value content.
Unless you have God-given talent to communicate your ideas off-the-cuff, or have substantial matter expertise, more often than not you will have to organize your thoughts, type them up, format it, rearrange, rewrite, sleep on it, rewrite again, until a finished product that you are proud of emerges.
This is great and all, but what does this have to do with chocolates? As I said initially, I got caught up reading the 1,001 blogs out there. Some were uplifting, some were entertaining, some where downright demoralizing.
Demoralizing?? How so?
As you already know, there are quite a few ways to start a business online, or have a web presence that drives your business adventures. As such, there are a million opinions about what to do or how you should go about it.
There are specific goals I’d like to accomplish and have a plan in mind as to what I want to do. If I were to ask 10 people out there how I should do it, I’d get 11 different answers. All sorts of opinions on what I should or shouldn’t do, how, when, why, etc., started creating doubts that I had no idea what I was doing. Maybe… it was all a big waste of time?
This doubt creeping in was untrue. I have some idea of what to do, as do many of you, and even more so than I do.
The worst thing that you can do is change course with the slightest bit of wind. I realized I was getting caught up in all the different shifting winds until I started questioning whether what I was doing was even worth doing at all.
That’s when I came to the realization that each person was speaking from their point of view, drawing from their own experiences. Sure, I might achieve some success by copying exactly what they do, but that would mean I would not be true to myself. Just an impersonator, trying to emulate someone else’s success.
The best thing you can do to achieve your goals is to be consistent. Most people give up shortly after starting. But if you persevere, if you stick true to achieving the goals you have set for yourself, you will achieve them or even surpass them. The key is to never stop pushing forward. Do not lose momentum. Keep those feet moving!
I can write the most uplifting post, give you step-by-step directions, yet it will not help you move forward one bit if you don’t use that motivation or the guidance provided and apply it to your business to get the ball rolling. Do your own thing, be true to yourself, and reap the rewards of your work.
Understand that consuming the information is useless if you do not put it into practice. Read the blogs, but remember that most are like candy. Tasty and enjoyable, but ultimately too much candy will give you a stomach ache.
I can already hear it now: “Well, I won’t read your blog then, Mister SmartyPants!” Not at all what I mean. Need I restate how much I love candy? The word of the day is moderation.
Remember that reading other blogs out there, participating, engaging the community in thoughtful discussion is part of any sound Internet business strategy. You have to be out there to see what is trending, what fresh ideas are out there (and there are many).
But it is only part of your strategy and should be treated as such, with appointed time limits. At the end of the day, if you are not working hard to produce great content that builds your personal brand, all the networking in the world is not going to get your business to the next level.
Engage, participate, but don’t forget that what you DO is what moves you forward.
Build the best business that you can.