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Matt Sun

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I can objectively say that people who think they suck don't suck if they know a lot about the subject. For example, if you're a successful swimming coach who has taught many people how to swim I know that you don't suck.

I can't objectively say that I don't suck. In fact, I know that I do suck and am at best mediocre at my "best" skills. For example, my writing skills are average. Most professional writers are better than me. My skills are nothing outstanding and each year, they seem to be worth less and less.

Obviously it's hard to say anything objectively about yourself but at whatever abilities I look in myself, I just don't have any skills I'm really good at. I know a little about many subjects but I'm not an expert in any of them.

I'm not sure it's really that useful to be a generalist as there's little value you can offer if you're not a true expert who knows answers to most questions (and has the results and credibility to back it up).

So whatever new business ideas I have now, in the end I always discard them because everyone could gain the same experience in very little time.
I remember you said that you gave you writing to a friend for review and she said you had a gift for writing. So this is quite subjective, not an objective truth that you suck.
You could let the market decide how good is your writing, IMO the best option, (just try to not burn lots of cash on ads).
 
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MTF

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I remember you said that you gave you writing to a friend for review and she said you had a gift for writing. So this is quite subjective, not an objective truth that you suck.

The thing is that she knows me and she isn't an expert in writing. So it's sort of like your mom telling you that you're great.

And that's my problem. I stopped believing even external validation.

You could let the market decide how good is your writing, IMO the best option, (just try to not burn lots of cash on ads).

As above, plus I can't find it in me to write anything new. Whatever new topic I have, I instantly shoot it down because I'm just not good enough to write it and it will fail anyway (like everything I released in the last 2-3 years).

I think I'm starting to understand why top artists of the past stop publishing new music. It's just too damn hard to keep trying to revive that spark when it simply no longer works.
 

theag

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Whatever new topic I have, I instantly shoot it down because I'm just not good enough to write it and it will fail anyway (like everything I released in the last 2-3 years).
Maybe double down on whats working instead of trying new stuff? Nothing wrong with being a one trick pony... I'm working on the same business for 7 years now and think it would be exponentially harder to start something completely new.

 

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Maybe double down on whats working instead of trying new stuff? Nothing wrong with being a one trick pony... I'm working on the same business for 7 years now and think it would be exponentially harder to start something completely new.


What would you do if the stuff you've been working on for 7 years that used to work no longer works?
 

theag

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What would you do if the stuff you've been working on for 7 years that used to work no longer works?
Good question. Is that the situation you're in?

Obviously I'd try to find something new, because there's no alternative.

I'd start with another product business that is as similar as possible to the one that worked for me to get the most out of the learnings from the first one.

To keep myself afloat financially while finding the next thing, I'd also start freelance consulting about those same learnings and skills that I built in the first one, because they are in pretty evergreen areas (performance marketing, copywriting, conversion optimization, software development).

If nothing works, move to ideas that are less and less similar to the one that worked. At some point I would probably look for an entrepreneurial job for a limited time, like in an early stage VC funded startup in an industry that interests me, to get a fresh perspective.

Regarding the validation you mentioned... I have these same problems, too, even in my existing and healthy business. Stuff like new products, new marketing campaigns etc where I spent a lot of time on it, had a great feeling and which then failed spectacularly. This really hurt my self-confidence and led to trying less stuff for some time.

What I learned from that, is to try stuff with the least amount of money, time and effort possible. So the whole market-testing/MVP clichée you read about in every third blog post. I arrogantly thought I was above it, because I had something working already, but I really wasn't.
 

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Is that the situation you're in?

Thank you for sharing your perspective. I appreciate it a lot.

Yes, that's my current situation. I mean, I get passive income from my books published years ago but pretty much nothing from anything I did in the last 2-3 years. I'm financially independent but I'd still like to grow.

I'd start with another product business that is as similar as possible to the one that worked for me to get the most out of the learnings from the first one

I think that the self-publishing industry is now broken so I'm not sure if I could do that (same with teaching others, it would be dishonest). I tried in a different niche already and with other topics and it just doesn't work. Way too much competition and a race to the bottom (or people using shady marketing). And my lack of confidence doesn't help, either.

Feels wrong to turn my back on writing but at the same time I now feel it's a low-value skill to have. In the end, every fool can write. It's selling that's incredibly hard.
 

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Thank you for sharing your perspective. I appreciate it a lot.

Yes, that's my current situation. I mean, I get passive income from my books published years ago but pretty much nothing from anything I did in the last 2-3 years. I'm financially independent but I'd still like to grow.



I think that the self-publishing industry is now broken so I'm not sure if I could do that (same with teaching others, it would be dishonest). I tried in a different niche already and with other topics and it just doesn't work. Way too much competition and a race to the bottom (or people using shady marketing). And my lack of confidence doesn't help, either.

Feels wrong to turn my back on writing but at the same time I now feel it's a low-value skill to have. In the end, every fool can write. It's selling that's incredibly hard.
I just want to shake you and kinda slap you upside the head and then hug you.. I’m that chick who looks super happy and fun until you realize I’m subtly psycho analyzing you while being a mom/bossy sister and all I want to do is give you cookies and help you see the real you.

So let’s do that.

The forum has not helped you get past this low point you seem to be having.
You’re being incredibly negative and cynical and it’s tiresome.
Your writing success is WELL above what most amateur writers would ever hope for.
You have no love for anything anymore, least of all yourself.

Well, that sucks.

What is love btw? It’s curiosity first, then a bit of admiration, then interchange, a give and take, then it deepens into commitment and work. Try being married for ten years. You have to learn how to fall in love again after you’ve heard somebody fart a lot.
Relationships take work.
You have to recommit to the thing you love even when it stops being loveable. You have to sacrifice. Our work is one of the most important relationships we have. It helps make us who we are. You either have to fall in love again..

OR… you have to go find something else (other work) to love.

But you no longer have enough energy to even be curious anymore. You have a broken heart about business. That disappointment has now seeped into a general anger and grief about everything.

You need to stop thinking about yourself all day every damn day. Resist self-pity with whatever balls you have left. (They’re big tho, I know cuz I’m kicking them.)

You need to go find something to get interested in, which means surrounding yourself with fascinating and wildly different subjects that maybe, might somehow, someway capture your curiosity. Apathy is the lowest level of energy on the planet. To get to a higher level you have to receive beauty, not logic, not information, JUST beauty.

You need to give yourself some work, some hard manual labor to give you confidence in your own sweat and blood. Hard work purges out demons.

Read a bit of Russian poetry every day, watch some YouTube videos on watercolor, check out an aquarium and make friends with a manatee, go for walks, do some math (Art of Problem Solving online is great) find some old ppl to sit next to, blindfold yourself for a day and go get a haircut.

Change the ideas that come into your life. Seek out simple effervescent moments. Look for ways to show compassion to people who can’t pay you back.

You got this man. Really. Smdh.
 

Andy Black

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How does one regain confidence in their skills? Any books, articles, suggestions, personal experiences?
Teach someone. Boy, does that highlight how much you know but take for granted.
 

Devampre

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How does one regain confidence in their skills? Any books, articles, suggestions, personal experiences?

Whatever I start these days or any new ideas I have, I quickly shoot them down. And in general, I feel like I have zero knowledge and value to share with others.

I can't get out of this cycle and can't imagine that in the past I used to just do lots of stuff without ever questioning myself. I look back and think I was one arrogant m*****ucker.

Perhaps you are holding your output to an unreasonably high standard and/or wrestling with perfectionism.

If you begin work on an idea, why do you delete it or give up on it?
 

Antifragile

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@MTF
I feel like you, I’m not great at anything. But unlike you, it doesn’t bother me. I’m no Elon Musk, so what? I have a good life, good health.
I fight my demons on being a shit writer, but with practice I’ll get better.
You’ve proven that you are capable. Now you are overthinking it, always focusing on the negative side. It blows.

Change your thinking, you deserve it. And until then, kick yourself in the nuts. You deserve it too. :)
 
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thechosen1

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How does one regain confidence in their skills? Any books, articles, suggestions, personal experiences?

Whatever I start these days or any new ideas I have, I quickly shoot them down. And in general, I feel like I have zero knowledge and value to share with others.

I can't get out of this cycle and can't imagine that in the past I used to just do lots of stuff without ever questioning myself. I look back and think I was one arrogant m*****ucker.
Maybe past success has turned you into a perfectionist?

Just give up on being perfect. Decide to make shit, and make a lot of it. Do it every day.

I’m no author, but every bit of experience I have tells me that’s the key: just keep producing, even if you don’t think it’s good. Keep doing it anyway.

It’s like a muscle you need to keep working. Produce a lot and don’t worry about it being perfect.
 

WillHurtDontCare

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How does one regain confidence in their skills? Any books, articles, suggestions, personal experiences?

Whatever I start these days or any new ideas I have, I quickly shoot them down. And in general, I feel like I have zero knowledge and value to share with others.

I can't get out of this cycle and can't imagine that in the past I used to just do lots of stuff without ever questioning myself. I look back and think I was one arrogant m*****ucker.

By lusting after your end goal and not giving a shit about what you have to do to get it.
 

WillHurtDontCare

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WillHurtDontCare

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thechosen1

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Through action, a man becomes a hero.
Through death, a hero becomes a legend.
Through time, a legend becomes a myth.

Through hearing a myth, a man takes action.
 

Timmy C

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WillHurtDontCare

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That video could be of any place in Australia.
It could be a prison that someone has filmed for propaganda prposes.
I believe nothing these days. Even talks of the NT rounding up aboriginals and putting them in camps was BS.

Probably the right mentality to have to an extent - though gaslighting people into indecision is one of the main goals of propaganda.
 

Timmy C

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Probably the right mentality to have to an extent - though gaslighting people into indecision is one of the main goals of propaganda.


The right and the left have spouted more propaganda over the last year than ever before.

Trust the experts? I don't trust the public health experts at all. They have either been wrong, or lied throughout this.
Trust the news? LOL, yeh right.
Trust some non-expert? How does that even make sense. Sure they might have some insight...
Trust dissenting voices? The consensus is against them.

Bullshit all round.
 

Raoul Duke

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thechosen1

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The right and the left have spouted more propaganda over the last year than ever before.

Trust the experts? I don't trust the public health experts at all. They have either been wrong, or lied throughout this.
Trust the news? LOL, yeh right.
Trust some non-expert? How does that even make sense. Sure they might have some insight...
Trust dissenting voices? The consensus is against them.

Bullshit all round.
Completely logical conclusion.

It’s exactly what they want of course, so their plan has been working. But the conclusion is right, based on the information given. Very sad.

Nobody knows what’s real and what isn’t, because you can’t believe the “official” sources. Doing your own research is always important, but those tools are kind of compromised too...
 

Andy Black

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How’s everyone’s Black Friday? Anyone buying any cool deals?
I’ll probably buy Wave.video from appsumo, maybe Ocoya too.
 

Fox

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How crazy do Thanksgiving dinners get with relatives? Does anyone have any funny stories??

I have seen 3 separate people online today advising how to avoid drama etc.

Please share the drama with us Europeans on the forum haha.
 

MTF

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Your writing success is WELL above what most amateur writers would ever hope for.

I got lucky. Amazon picked my books to promote and I benefited from it. If it weren't for them, I'd have nothing. So it's a similar kind of success to a guy who picked the right crypto to buy and was lucky enough to sell it at the right time. He achieved success well above what most amateur investors would ever hope for, yet you can't say he's really successful.

That's how I feel about myself. The proof is that now that Amazon isn't helping authors much anymore, my books aren't successful. I don't know shit about how to really operate this business. How else can you interpret it if despite having the biggest following you've ever had and much better writing skills than in the past you can't even make a few thousand dollars on a book (compared to six figures in the past)?

You have no love for anything anymore, least of all yourself.

Yeah, I never said I have love for myself. If anything, it's advancing self-hate.

Try being married for ten years. You have to learn how to fall in love again after you’ve heard somebody fart a lot.
Relationships take work.

I'm in a relationship that'll be ten years next year. It has never really taken that much work. Whenever I hear how hard it supposedly is, it feels like people just are in a wrong relationship.

You need to go find something to get interested in, which means surrounding yourself with fascinating and wildly different subjects that maybe, might somehow, someway capture your curiosity. Apathy is the lowest level of energy on the planet. To get to a higher level you have to receive beauty, not logic, not information, JUST beauty.

I've been traveling through the Canary Islands since the beginning of October, changing islands every two weeks or so. So I'm constantly seeing new things. I know that if I were stuck back at home I'd feel so much worse I probably wouldn't even have the energy to write this response. So at least there's this.

A couple of weeks ago I started learning how to freedive. My coach helped me regain some confidence in myself. But then we switched the islands, I started working with another coach and he promptly destroyed any confidence I had that I can ever learn how to freedive (or get good at anything for that matter).

It's sad but it seems like I'm very dependent on any self-esteem on some kind of an external accomplishment. Without it, I'm nothing.

Teach someone. Boy, does that highlight how much you know but take for granted.

I kind of wish I could teach people how to get comfortable in open water but it's impossible to do that where I live. Perhaps one day when I live in a better place for that.

Other than that, I get your point. I don't seem to be even 1/10th as empathetic as you are, though. I don't care much about teaching if I'm not getting any compensation for it.

Perhaps you are holding your output to an unreasonably high standard and/or wrestling with perfectionism.

If you begin work on an idea, why do you delete it or give up on it?

Because I feel any of the following:
  • it's shit,
  • it's useless,
  • it doesn't change anything,
  • it's too hard because I'm too stupid to understand it,
  • others do it better,
  • it's not going to produce the results I'm after,
  • it'll take too much time and effort to get it right only to see it tank anyway.

@MTF
I feel like you, I’m not great at anything. But unlike you, it doesn’t bother me. I’m no Elon Musk, so what? I have a good life, good health.
I fight my demons on being a shit writer, but with practice I’ll get better.
You’ve proven that you are capable. Now you are overthinking it, always focusing on the negative side. It blows.

Change your thinking, you deserve it. And until then, kick yourself in the nuts. You deserve it too. :)

Like I mentioned before, my skills are way worse than others think. I got lucky in this business. I see tons of new freelance writers with a distinct writing style who do know how to write well. My writing quality is primitive compared to them.

Maybe past success has turned you into a perfectionist?

Just give up on being perfect. Decide to make shit, and make a lot of it. Do it every day.

I’m no author, but every bit of experience I have tells me that’s the key: just keep producing, even if you don’t think it’s good. Keep doing it anyway.

It’s like a muscle you need to keep working. Produce a lot and don’t worry about it being perfect.

At this point I don't feel like producing only to never get anything out of it. I've wasted so much time and money on writing the last few years with nothing to show for it that I hate the thought of doing this again. Also, hard not to transmit in your writing the feelings of unworthiness and lack of confidence, which leads to a book nobody believes.

By lusting after your end goal and not giving a shit about what you have to do to get it.

That's assuming you have an end goal. If you don't have any, you don't give a shit. I've been reading autobiographies of very driven people recently and I can't relate to them. It's interesting to see that some people have this much energy as it's a foreign concept to me.
 

Lex DeVille

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How crazy do Thanksgiving dinners get with relatives? Does anyone have any funny stories??

I have seen 3 separate people online today advising how to avoid drama etc.

Please share the drama with us Europeans on the forum haha.
I struggled through it. It's mostly just one person that causes drama.

I'm trying to teach my 4-year-old good habits with things like food, behavior etc. But one person constantly undermines my parenting by rewarding negative behaviors (like fit-throwing), and by pushing every kind of sweet imaginable despite their own failing health resulting from food addiction.

It's nothing new. Happens every time I come over, and I try to be reasonable with it on holidays because I know there will be sweets. It's not like I don't let my daughter have sweets. But it is in moderation because we've reached a point where she doesn't want to eat anything else.

On Thanksgiving, this happens repeatedly across many hours, regardless of how many times I say "no" to something whether it is food, behavior, requests.

By noon I've been awake 12 hours, and introversion kicks into overdrive. At that point, every challenge to my parenting goes from minor annoyance to seething rage. I never let it out, but it sucks because even though I want to hang out with the rest of my family, one person makes it miserable for me, and the result is that I become quiet, detached, and probably miserable for others to be around. So I leave and go home before I say something that I probably won't regret, but will hurt that person all the same. History tells me that if I don't leave immediately, real drama will follow in short order.

I take pride in this enormous restraint and imagine that lesser men would give into such great temptations of emotion, thus resulting in Thanksgiving drama. :D
 
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That's how I feel about myself. The proof is that now that Amazon isn't helping authors much anymore, my books aren't successful. I don't know shit about how to really operate this business. How else can you interpret it if despite having the biggest following you've ever had and much better writing skills than in the past you can't even make a few thousand dollars on a book (compared to six figures in the past)?

You are for sure selling yourself too short.

The book you helped me put together, and promote, changed my business.
It was easily worth six figures in attracting customers and business branding.

And I am a small business - imagine helping someone with a massive audience.

You for sure have skills and they could be applied in many different ways to provide a ton of value.

If someone else was to use your current skills/savings/experience what might they do to reach the next level?
 

Andy Black

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@MTF

Read you’re own posts as if they were written by someone else.

What would you conclude?

More importantly, what would you advise?

(This works for all of us btw.)
 

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