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SteveO

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Ok I get being focused and pushing through barriers etc...but when do you realize you are at the end and you simply have to close up shop and re-start? It's great being persistent but when does that become deluded? It can be a fine line?
Yes, and I stated that as well. The writing is usually on the wall. The intent here is to get good at something and stay focused. That can be a challenge for many.
 

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Striver

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Yes, and I stated that as well. The writing is usually on the wall. The intent here is to get good at something and stay focused. That can be a challenge for many.
Definitely a challenge for my ADD a$$!
 

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Great Post! This is something I also struggle with, so many ideas come into my head that I don't know which to do first.

I guess you just focus on something when it works and drop the others if they don't?
 

Michael Santiago

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Good post and something that applies to most of us. In this day and age there is so much opportunity that it is hard to decide and stick to 'ONE' path. As they say, the grass is always greener on the other side. In fact, this has been studied and it is well known that humans make poorer decisions once the number of choices goes above more than 2-3.

So... pick something and stick to it!
 

WJK

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Sometimes I wonder if people are looking too many directions to try and figure out a path to take. Not that it isn't important to evaluate the options but, at some point the direction needs to narrow down.

Make your plans to move forward based on a carefully thought out plan that will take you where you want to go. If it isn't working... adjust... If it works... refine and move forward.

The rewards in real estate can be great -- but it also has a lot of bear traps. Sounds like you fell into a couple. BUT, you got out, you learned, and that is the important part. Apartments can be wonderful bridge to Passive Income, increasing net worth through both debt reduction and appreciation, coupled with really cool depreciation. Making it work is all in the day-to-day management, and cash controls. It's a skill set that is very rare. The development and rehab businesses can also be serious money makers, so keep those possibilities in the back of your mind for some future stud-card-deals. Remember, it's all part of the same pocket of gold. Good luck and God's speed!
 

Matt Hugh

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Make your plans to move forward based on a carefully thought out plan that will take you where you want to go. If it isn't working... adjust... If it works... refine and move forward.

Thanks for this post @SteveO and @MTF for pointing it out!

A reminder for me to stop thrashing around on multiple ideas and focus on building one solid plan.
 

SteveO

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Thanks for this post @SteveO and @MTF for pointing it out!

A reminder for me to stop thrashing around on multiple ideas and focus on building one solid plan.
Thanks Matt. Keep in mind that I'm not advocating that you only work on one project at a time. Get good at something that works for you and build off of it.
 

SteveO

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The rewards in real estate can be great -- but it also has a lot of bear traps. Sounds like you fell into a couple. BUT, you got out, you learned, and that is the important part. Apartments can be wonderful bridge to Passive Income, increasing net worth through both debt reduction and appreciation, coupled with really cool depreciation. Making it work is all in the day-to-day management, and cash controls. It's a skill set that is very rare. The development and rehab businesses can also be serious money makers, so keep those possibilities in the back of your mind for some future stud-card-deals. Remember, it's all part of the same pocket of gold. Good luck and God's speed!
The bear traps you talk about felt like them at the time. Moving forward from that felt like being the fastest runner in the field but wearing a 50 pound vest.

I have done development and many rehabs. My opinion is that turning rehabs to build cash is the easiest way. Once you have enough cash, buy for cashflow.

Sounds like you have a nice hybrid going on. Build cashflow through rehabs.
 

Dave Daily

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@SteveO Excellent post. Apartment investing is near the top of my list. I actually have some knowledge in the area. I also made $50K flipping a 74 unit contract to an investor at the end of 2015. I showed my valuation to the broker, who must have showed it to the investor. The investor backed out once he saw my valuation. My belief system got in my way and I bailed until now. I have a strong draw toward getting back into apartment investing.
 

SteveO

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Bump, because it's a must read.

I started this post almost 11 years ago. It was near the beginning of this forum.

The biggest challenge that I ever faced in my entire career is chronicled in this post.

Although it solidified the original point, I felt very challenged on the validity of the assertions along the way.

There have been a number of people who have successfully changed direction. There are even some that operate a primary and secondary business successfully.

My contention is not to stick with an unsuccessful path. It is to find one with potential, build your skills, and capitalize on it.

I was shaken to my core at one point. But it turned out to be part of the learning curve.

This post is not among the most valuable on the forum. It will not help you find a direction. It will not tell you which business is the best. It is simply a statement on building skills and staying on direction.
 

WJK

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I wrote a blog about this problem a couple weeks ago. Yes, the grass does look greener on the other side of the fence. READ THAT POST.
I ended it with the following:
Look Before You Leap
In short, look before you leap over that fence. Is it that much better over there than it is in your little patch? Find out why that grass appears greener. Sometimes what you’re seeing is a tall tuft of weeds growing over an old septic tank.
 

ApeRunner

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Right now I am at crossroads. My field, education, has proven very challenged lately. I'm looking at a lot of new opportunities. Considering starting a 2nd. business because the one I have is not working the way I need. Even if I have focused on it 100% the last 3 years.
 

WJK

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Right now I am at crossroads. My field, education, has proven very challenged lately. I'm looking at a lot of new opportunities. Considering starting a 2nd. business because the one I have is not working the way I need. Even if I have focused on it 100% the last 3 years.

Before you start something new, you need to figure out what has and hasn't been working for you. I'm sure you don't want to repeat your mistakes.
Then see what parts of what you have been doing which can be applied to a new or different use. I know you don't want to throw out the baby with the dirty bath water.
You need to ask yourself IF it's possible to morph your present business and change directions, so you don't have to start over again. Starting from scratch really sucks! It's enough to stop everyone but the most courageous.
Failure is our best teacher because we analyze those events much closer. What have you learned?
 

SteveO

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Right now I am at crossroads. My field, education, has proven very challenged lately. I'm looking at a lot of new opportunities. Considering starting a 2nd. business because the one I have is not working the way I need. Even if I have focused on it 100% the last 3 years.
I don't know anything about your business. 3 years with all your attention sounds like either you are not selling what people need or you are not getting it out there. Do you know why? In either case, can you start another business with the skills you have already acquired?
 

RayAndré

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My contention is not to stick with an unsuccessful path. It is to find one with potential, build your skills, and capitalize on it.
This.
 

Suzanne Bazemore

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My contention is not to stick with an unsuccessful path. It is to find one with potential, build your skills, and capitalize on it.
@SteveO, this thread is great. It really makes me think about all the skipping around in interests that I do. I think, for me, it's just an excuse not to commit.
@MTF, thanks for bumping it.
 

SteveO

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Bump for 2019.
Thanks @MTF . This post was started over 10 years ago shortly after the start of the forum. There was a BIG difference in the direction of the members back at that time. People were all over the place. This is a much more focused forum now.

It seems to me that most people are now focused on a path that leads to online stores and amazon. The world is MUCH larger than that though. Oftentimes the path to success is slapping us in the face but we don't see it.

I feel that the original premise of this post is still very relevant. But some might benefit by expanding their vision in the initial stages.
 
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Ing

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I have a question, which may seen dump, but ask it though.


I got in that thread by looking for ideas for a focus, as I have several directions, in which I look. To many.

So I have a question: I want to get the path of sourcing and selling something in a bigger style.

Is trading in general a narrow path? Or only focus on one thing to trade with?

In special : I m looking for good with a big margin. When I have one and start trading it, should I focus on getting the next thing and so on or focus on trading that single thing?
What exactly does it mean th focus on one thing?

Is „one thing“ the trading itself or trading a special thing?

btw. A great thread!
 

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SteveO

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I have a question, which may seen dump, but ask it though.


I got in that thread by looking for ideas for a focus, as I have several directions, in which I look. To many.

So I have a question: I want to get the path of sourcing and selling something in a bigger style.

Is trading in general a narrow path? Or only focus on one thing to trade with?

In special : I m looking for good with a big margin. When I have one and start trading it, should I focus on getting the next thing and so on or focus on trading that single thing?
What exactly does it mean th focus on one thing?

Is „one thing“ the trading itself or trading a special thing?

btw. A great thread!
The one thing is trading itself. If that is what you are going to do, stick with it and don't give up. Every business requires skills and expertise. The more you work it, the better you get.
 
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WJK

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I have a question, which may seen dump, but ask it though.


I got in that thread by looking for ideas for a focus, as I have several directions, in which I look. To many.

So I have a question: I want to get the path of sourcing and selling something in a bigger style.

Is trading in general a narrow path? Or only focus on one thing to trade with?

In special : I m looking for good with a big margin. When I have one and start trading it, should I focus on getting the next thing and so on or focus on trading that single thing?
What exactly does it mean th focus on one thing?

Is „one thing“ the trading itself or trading a special thing?

btw. A great thread!
You're talking about putting all your eggs in one basket?????
 

SteveO

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You're talking about putting all your eggs in one basket?????
There is a big difference between putting all your eggs in one basket and focusing on a successful business.
 

WJK

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There is a big difference between putting all your eggs in one basket and focusing on a successful business.
Yes, you're right. We must focus.. BUT, one must acknowledge that "focusing on a successful business" to the exclusion of everything else has the same fragility.
 

SteveO

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Yes, you're right. We must focus.. BUT, one must acknowledge that "focusing on a successful business" to the exclusion of everything else has the same fragility.
Not disagreeing with you. The idea here is to figure out how to make money. Once you can do that, the options really open up.
 

WJK

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Not disagreeing with you. The idea here is to figure out how to make money. Once you can do that, the options really open up.
AS long as you're willing to lose your investment nut, then run with it. I do the same with my "pie-in-the-sky" investments. If they fail, and almost all do, I will lose my entire investment. If they take off, I'll make HUGE returns that are exponential compared to my investment. BUT, I only gamble with what I know won't really hurt me to lose -- a very small percentage of my assets. And I vet those investments carefully while educating myself in that part of the market. It's one of the perks of being a qualified investor.
 

Ved Vardhan

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Few beautiful quotes on this topic:

"Concentrate your energy, thought and capital exclusively upon the business in which you are engaged... 'Don't put all your eggs in one basket' is all wrong. I tell you 'put all your eggs in one basket, and then watch that basket.'" ~ Andrew Carnegie

"Diversification is something that stock brokers came up with to protect themselves, so they wouldn't get sued for making bad investment choices for clients. Henry Ford never diversified, Bill Gates didn't diversify. The way to get rich is to put your eggs in one basket, but watch that basket very carefully. And make sure you have the right basket." ~ Jim Rogers

"Behold, the fool saith, "Put not all thine eggs in the one basket" - which is but a matter of saying, "Scatter your money and your attention"; but the wise man saith, "Pull all your eggs in the one basket and - WATCH THAT BASKET." - Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar" ~ Mark Twain

"A question that often comes up at times of strategic transformation is, should you pursue a highly focused approach, betting everything on one strategic goal, or should you hedge? ... Mark Twain hit it on the head when he said, Put all of your eggs in one basket and WATCH THAT BASKET." ~ Andy Grove

"Conventional wisdom is not to put all of your eggs in one basket. 80/20 wisdom is to choose a basket carefully, load all your eggs into it, and then watch it like a hawk." ~ Richard Koch
 

Ernman

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@SteveO am I reading the dates correctly, you started this thread in 2007? And it remains just as relevant and worthy of discussion. Awesome!

I agree with your thread and like how MJ puts it, be monogamous to your business until you're successful enough to take on other risks. (hope I paraphrased that properly) My biggest challenge at this point is finding that business to be monogamous with. I know I'll figure it out and hope to God I'm smart enough to recognize it when I do.
 

sonny_1080

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Found this thread at the perfect time.

The ideas found in this thread hit me differently. I recently (within the last few months) learned a new skill. It’s been proven successful. I’m confident I can continue to build revenue if I focus on getting it in front of the right people.

It’s still early on in my business. I’m thinking about pivoting it a little differently to help people with a very specific problem.

Part of me wants to stick with what’s proven to work. The other part wants to dedicate some time to this new pivot.

What I’ve gleaned from your post is what you said to MTF a couple years ago:

No!!!! That is the right thing to do. Build off of what you know.

You would still be working within your field of expertise.

I should clarify as well that there is nothing wrong with making changes and adjustments. Especially early on while trying to find a niche

If you are going to sell information, then understand the market and go after it


You also said:

“My contention is not to stick with an unsuccessful path. It is to find one with potential, build your skills, and capitalize on it.”

Thank you for clarifying this point.

This helps:

 

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