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EXECUTION Hitting a wall in the desert of desertion

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Juke

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Can you relate to this scenario?

I started my journey in to entrepreneurship in early 2020, just before the global pandemic started. I had been getting more and more sick and tired of my job as a sales rep for a software company for some time and decided to design my own product in the industry I was familiar with. I had no experience in product design but a lot of experience in the industry and confident in what it needed. I had to teach myself how to design software through online courses and books but got myself to a level where I could design the first version of our MVP and send to a friend to code.

This whole process took some time but throughout, I remained extremely motivated, investing many hours of my time and a good chunk of money on the web design, logo design, legal advice and web hosting. Until…

It’s now been months since I made any real progress on getting the MVP live. The initial excitement of launching my own business seems to have dissipated, and I am really struggling to find the motivation to work on it. I am still doing well in my job but with limited motivation there too and it is quite demanding mentally. I feel too tired to work on my business in the evenings and weekends. I am finding myself becoming more distractible by things like TV, video games, the internet or reading books. Anything that doesn’t take too much brain power or creativity outside work hours.

I know MJ calls this period the desert of desertion in his books and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced it.

Is anyone else here able to share their story about travelling through the desert? Does my story sound familiar? What did you find helped you make it through the journey?

Any insight from anyone with this experience would be much appreciated.

I know everyone is different, and so I'm not asking for a prescription from anyone but at the very least I hope this to be an interesting topic of discussion.

Many thanks in advance.
 
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Parks

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Can or have you already gauged/test the market on the product your working on?

Seeing good results and having customers ready to buy can be a good motivator to get out of the desert. Just gotta keep pushing and start kicking in the discipline.
 

Juke

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Can or have you already gauged/test the market on the product your working on?

Seeing good results and having customers ready to buy can be a good motivator to get out of the desert. Just gotta keep pushing and start kicking in the discipline.
I haven't tested it to be honest but I have seen very similar products do well in the market (or well enough) to know it should work.

I would love to get some customers ready to buy, however I am in a tricky situation to be honest. There will be a conflict of interest with my employer if I launch while still employed so the plan is to quit my job as soon as the product is ready and then start selling.

The problem now is getting the product ready to sell, which is taking some time and effort.

Thanks for your comment and encouragement. I know I need to keep pushing. I think perhaps that deep down this post is a shameless plea for encouragement. We salespeople are sensitive creatures ha
 

Itizn

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We've all been there.

Sounds like you are more adept at the sales aspect than the technical aspect of your business.

In my opinion, that is a better problem to have. If you are stuck in the building phase, then all I can suggest is to change up something in your day-to-day (scheduling, environment, maybe even diet) to break out of that rut and get your creative juices rejuvenated.

As a salesman, you and I both know prospecting is key, and any day where you talk to or meet a valuable contact to build a relationship with, is a good day in sales.

Keep going.
 

Juke

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In my opinion, that is a better problem to have. If you are stuck in the building phase, then all I can suggest is to change up something in your day-to-day (scheduling, environment, maybe even diet) to break out of that rut and get your creative juices rejuvenated.

Great advice, thanks Itizn!
 

Kevin88660

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Can you relate to this scenario?

I started my journey in to entrepreneurship in early 2020, just before the global pandemic started. I had been getting more and more sick and tired of my job as a sales rep for a software company for some time and decided to design my own product in the industry I was familiar with. I had no experience in product design but a lot of experience in the industry and confident in what it needed. I had to teach myself how to design software through online courses and books but got myself to a level where I could design the first version of our MVP and send to a friend to code.

This whole process took some time but throughout, I remained extremely motivated, investing many hours of my time and a good chunk of money on the web design, logo design, legal advice and web hosting. Until…

It’s now been months since I made any real progress on getting the MVP live. The initial excitement of launching my own business seems to have dissipated, and I am really struggling to find the motivation to work on it. I am still doing well in my job but with limited motivation there too and it is quite demanding mentally. I feel too tired to work on my business in the evenings and weekends. I am finding myself becoming more distractible by things like TV, video games, the internet or reading books. Anything that doesn’t take too much brain power or creativity outside work hours.

I know MJ calls this period the desert of desertion in his books and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced it.

Is anyone else here able to share their story about travelling through the desert? Does my story sound familiar? What did you find helped you make it through the journey?

Any insight from anyone with this experience would be much appreciated.

I know everyone is different, and so I'm not asking for a prescription from anyone but at the very least I hope this to be an interesting topic of discussion.

Many thanks in advance.
I work in financial sales and most financial firms have horrible crm software. Full of bugs.

I will set clearly defined parameters on when to exit project. How much to invest…Trying different ways (5-10?) to test market demand or solve the problem…

This is contentious and many will disagree. Which is to not fall in love with original idea. It is your goal to eventually be successful in business but not to make that idea work. You have your own initial reason to get into the market/sector. It is also important to set a goal that will nullify your hypothesis. You can list of possible 3-4 ways to solve the problem and 3-4 channels to test the market response. And also decide your time and money budget for this project. At one point you need to say im going to test two more ways to solves the problem and one last channel to market my product and if I get sales below this threashold I am out.

It definitely more art than science. But if your goal is to make it in 5-10 years the biggest danger is have money and time opportunity cost tied to dead end projects.

If you quit digging a good idea too early (subjective though) you might be just missing the gold that is only a few inches away..Conversely you do not want to be a barely profitable project for four years and think something might change on fifth year.

My point is not to take lack of progress too personally. As long you set your “stop loss” limit in place you are either on your way to succeed in this project or future project. No progress is essentially part of the progress itself. Many founders achieved success using skilled developed in early failed ventures.
 
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Mike Stoian

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I'm gonna throw some stuff out here. Let me know if this is you:

I don't think you lack motivation. You're just more motivated towards TV, video games, the internet or reading books.

And it's easy to understand why. In the beginning it's easier to keep going since the vision is fresh in your mind. As time goes on your brain learns that doing another hour of work won't bring you anything pleasurable. But 1 hour of TV or video games does bring pleasure => brain actively works against your goals.

So you've been grinding away at the work by using your willpower and keeping the vision clear in your mind but over time those fade away. So you can:
1 ) regularly take some time off guilt free and redraw the vision and the 'why' -> maybe you will come back with renewed "motivation"
2 ) find a way to make the whole process somewhat enjoyable.
 

Martin Z

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I'm gonna throw some stuff out here. Let me know if this is you:

I don't think you lack motivation. You're just more motivated towards TV, video games, the internet or reading books.

And it's easy to understand why. In the beginning it's easier to keep going since the vision is fresh in your mind. As time goes on your brain learns that doing another hour of work won't bring you anything pleasurable. But 1 hour of TV or video games does bring pleasure => brain actively works against your goals.

So you've been grinding away at the work by using your willpower and keeping the vision clear in your mind but over time those fade away. So you can:
1 ) regularly take some time off guilt free and redraw the vision and the 'why' -> maybe you will come back with renewed "motivation"
2 ) find a way to make the whole process somewhat enjoyable.
It's crazy how this stuff works. In 5-10 years you'll be like; "Wow, I made incredible progress".
 

Martin Z

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Read Rat-Race Escape!
Read Millionaire Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Oct 11, 2021
202
126
73
Stavanger, Norway
Can you relate to this scenario?

I started my journey in to entrepreneurship in early 2020, just before the global pandemic started. I had been getting more and more sick and tired of my job as a sales rep for a software company for some time and decided to design my own product in the industry I was familiar with. I had no experience in product design but a lot of experience in the industry and confident in what it needed. I had to teach myself how to design software through online courses and books but got myself to a level where I could design the first version of our MVP and send to a friend to code.

This whole process took some time but throughout, I remained extremely motivated, investing many hours of my time and a good chunk of money on the web design, logo design, legal advice and web hosting. Until…

It’s now been months since I made any real progress on getting the MVP live. The initial excitement of launching my own business seems to have dissipated, and I am really struggling to find the motivation to work on it. I am still doing well in my job but with limited motivation there too and it is quite demanding mentally. I feel too tired to work on my business in the evenings and weekends. I am finding myself becoming more distractible by things like TV, video games, the internet or reading books. Anything that doesn’t take too much brain power or creativity outside work hours.

I know MJ calls this period the desert of desertion in his books and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced it.

Is anyone else here able to share their story about travelling through the desert? Does my story sound familiar? What did you find helped you make it through the journey?

Any insight from anyone with this experience would be much appreciated.

I know everyone is different, and so I'm not asking for a prescription from anyone but at the very least I hope this to be an interesting topic of discussion.

Many thanks in advance.
I can relate to this as well. I've had several moments this year when I wanted to quit, especially in October and throw everything out the door but some guys on this forum gave me some quality advice. Sometimes this road can be very lonely. This is going to sound very guruish but you got to enjoy the struggle and find positives in it. People underestimate how important experience is in business and how years of knowledge(even if you sucked) compound over time. That's why you see these huge successful serial entrepreneurs who are able to create big things consistently. It's not accident, they have tons of experience in what they do hence why the so called average people think it's due to luck.

I think the main reason why you're feeling this way is because one of 2 things:

1. You aren't clear about what it is that you REALLY want. Precisely to the detail. OR

2. You know what you want but you don't know how to get there. Which is almost the same thing as the previous point. You haven't mapped all the possible ways to get to your goal, which means that if you notice something isn't working very well, all you need to do is take a different strategy from your existing map. Our brain is very smart, if you give it clues and directions of your target, it's going to follow it easily. It's crazy how our brain works.

Let me tell you this. You aren't bad, you just haven't found something that works. Because if you don't do it, then it's easy to procrastinate if you haven't planned your day which is the case for the majority of the population, and it's why they don't achieve nothing significant in life. Manny Khosbin had a great quote on this: "You are already succeeding, it just hasn't happened yet".

I would also recommend surrounding yourself with people who are 20-30 years ahead of where you are. I'm not talking about the gurus who make $10,000-$20,000 a month from YouTube ads or selling courses, you know who I'm talking about. The guys pretending to be successful, the guys who think $500-$1000 is a lot of money.

Instead, learn from guys who have built real companies and who can give you quality advice because they've been where you were. They can give you directions because they know what works and more importantly, what DOESN'T. These guys can see emerging patterns instantly.

I'm still pretty young myself. It's very difficult to find people who are like minded and who have the same ambition as me in my country(especially in my age group, people who are in college or just graduating college). What helps me is listening to podcasts, particularly podcasts from Andy Frisella and Ed Mylett as it's very impressive what they've done in their lives, especially Andy who's got a company that's making $500-600 million annually. His story is unbelievable, how he wasn't making any money for about his first 10 years in business. He's someone who I personally admire a lot. Manny Khosbin is also a very good one, especially if you're into real estate. His personal development stuff is also very good.

These people will push your limits of belief and will motivate you despite adversities. You'll look at life: "Wow, if they have done it in such circumstances, so can I!". You build a new belief system.

There's also a guy in my city who has a net worth of almost $500 million and just by listening to this guy, I start to see why he is where he is. His way of thinking is extraordinary.
 
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robertwills

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Can you relate to this scenario?

I started my journey in to entrepreneurship in early 2020, just before the global pandemic started. I had been getting more and more sick and tired of my job as a sales rep for a software company for some time and decided to design my own product in the industry I was familiar with. I had no experience in product design but a lot of experience in the industry and confident in what it needed. I had to teach myself how to design software through online courses and books but got myself to a level where I could design the first version of our MVP and send to a friend to code.

This whole process took some time but throughout, I remained extremely motivated, investing many hours of my time and a good chunk of money on the web design, logo design, legal advice and web hosting. Until…

It’s now been months since I made any real progress on getting the MVP live. The initial excitement of launching my own business seems to have dissipated, and I am really struggling to find the motivation to work on it. I am still doing well in my job but with limited motivation there too and it is quite demanding mentally. I feel too tired to work on my business in the evenings and weekends. I am finding myself becoming more distractible by things like TV, video games, the internet or reading books. Anything that doesn’t take too much brain power or creativity outside work hours.

I know MJ calls this period the desert of desertion in his books and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced it.

Is anyone else here able to share their story about travelling through the desert? Does my story sound familiar? What did you find helped you make it through the journey?

Any insight from anyone with this experience would be much appreciated.

I know everyone is different, and so I'm not asking for a prescription from anyone but at the very least I hope this to be an interesting topic of discussion.

Many thanks in advance.
If you made some money, rather profit, would that be motivation enough? I meam if you starting netting $20K per month would that get you excited and looking forward to a whole day, and night, of working on your business? For me the answer is YES! Now would I just jump out of bed in the morning if I had no sales, no prospects and no idea of how to earn money in my business? The answer is NO! So maybe focus on brining in some substantial money and you'll be your own boss and have fun doing it. I'm not saying it's easy or it will always be easy but once you can do that at least it's easy to keep the motivation level very high.
 

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