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Three Years of Entrepreneurship... Stuck In A Rut... Now What?

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Jonathan Boyd

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(Qualified) advice needed: I'll bring you "up to speed" as concisely as possible...

I got a degree in Mechanical Engineering (and hated it). Then went to grad school (in engineering - and hated it). Long story short, I dropped out...

I joined another program more focused on entrepreneurship, and quickly decided I could do it on my own without blowing 5-figures on tuition. So I dropped out... again...

To do what? I started a guitar school by walking door to door delivering flyers and putting out yard signs...

Fast forward a few months later, I discovered copywriting, landing pages, direct mail, and Google Adwords. Now I could sit at home (or the office) and have students come to me automatically...

Then I read The Millionaire Fastlane. I realized the direction I was heading wasn't a fit for my personality, and the business model was going to make it difficult to achieve my longer term goals. I wanted an internet business…

So while still "running" the school, I decided to start an "agency" doing Google and FB ads for clients (because apparently you could make the big $$ and not do the work). After working with a handful of clients and cold-calling CEOs every morning, eventually I dreaded getting out of bed. Lesson learned: doing it "for the money" isn't worth it...

So I turned my focus back to what I knew, what I was good at, and the "need" that was staring me in the face (students were coming to me because they weren't finding solutions to their problems elsewhere - and I knew how to solve them - and people were already buying solutions online)...

So I put 100% focus into building an online brand of advanced guitar training courses for those who want to freely improvise and write their own music...

For the past 9 months or so, I've been studying and working my a$$ off, and recently began testing the "launch" of my first training program...

…until my websites got hacked and shut down (for the 2nd time) a few days ago...at which point the results of the last 3-4 years of life choices have converged and hit me at once with a crushing weight...

Here's the harsh, embarrassing truth (and where I need your help)...

I've been working ALONE for over 3 years. I've alienated old friends and given up most hobbies and fun activities. My girlfriend of 3 years and I broke up 6 months ago. I've been on the computer 24/7 trying to get this new business cash-flowing (which I realize now is going to take much longer than expected). As a result, I've found myself in a place with almost no social interaction, almost no income, and I feel like it's really starting to affect my mental health...

I wake up to me and only me every day. All day. I've lived in this city all my life (and have outgrown it), but I feel like I just moved here and don't know anyone. I have no debt and a very modest 5-figure savings, but only enough income to pay rent...

I’m almost 30, and my close friends have all gotten jobs, are married, have a house and/or kids, and seem to be doing well right now. And the pressure is weighing on me heavily. I feel “left behind”. It may sound ridiculous, but that’s how I feel nonetheless...

I’ve been considering getting a full-time job 1) to have some social interaction and 2) so I can take a “breath” - to take the pressure off of needing to get my online business off the ground RIGHT NOW, and 3) learn some new skills…

I’ve also considered the negative consequences of a full-time job - most importantly the TIME aspect. However, I feel like the most important thing for me right now is a CHANGE and some level of variety in life. So I’ve considered looking for jobs in a new city...

Knowing my future goals lie in entrepreneurship, location independence, and a family, what are possible solutions to this situation right now? What am I overlooking? What questions should I be asking? How should/can I change my thinking to get out of this place in life?
 

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Dunkafelics

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Where are you at right now with regards to generating income?

I am 30 as well right now, have full-time employment and am working on a side business/high-ticket skill at the same time. Ideally, if you can I would recommend working on your business full-time, but if you don't have a source of income I would put your full focus on generating money for a period of time.

One of the best points I've heard on this forum is that sometimes as we go down this path, we start to think we are better than the friends and family that are/were in our lives. If you can, continue to surround yourself with high-level people but look to connect with the people that really matter in your life, or from the past.

The worst thing you can do to yourself right now is to continue down this path alone. If you aren't having success and then are also in a place where you are alone, I can't see that being a positive going forward.

Fast forward a few months later, I discovered copywriting, landing pages, direct mail, and Google Adwords. Now I could sit at home (or the office) and have students come to me automatically...

Which of these skills could you start to capitalize on and use right now?
 

LeoistheSun

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1. You sound like someone who is jumping from thing-to-thing
2. You have NO idea what people are going through- IE: Your friends "look" successful but maybe they hate their lives.
3. You can have relationships women at any age. 30 is just a number.
4. Move if you feel like it. Go somewhere new, get a job and retrain your brain with positive habits.
 

ruzara5

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Knowing my future goals lie in entrepreneurship, location independence, and a family, what are possible solutions to this situation right now? What am I overlooking? What questions should I be asking? How should/can I change my thinking to get out of this place in life?
Focus is important. Sounds like the desert of desertion at the far end of the tipping point. Asking questions here is good. Solutions. You answered one. Maybe get a job for the moment. Sometimes it can assist and eleviate until you get scale on your online business. A shift in thinking is important. Read. Breath. Repeat. Execute. Action. Move where the data reveals response to the value message.
 

Maxboost

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Have you considered doing youtube? Creating a youtube channel showing your talent and then selling the course, seems more logical than just pushing out a product on the internet..
 

Nahuelcassino

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Hello,

here is my personal opinion without knowing you or your situation.

I think that the road we decided to take is a difficult one, like the slowlane or sidewalk road, but when you are a fastlaner you look thing like most people dont and you sacrifice the now for a better future. You must disconect of slowlaners or sidewalker realitys, they live their live like everyone, and you cant compare yourself with them, because they had things now, but the things that the world give them. but we are looking and working for having the things and the live WE WANT, anything is given to us, we are fighting everyday, with ourselves and with the world. FIghting our thoughts of giving up, fighting everyones thoughts about us and our madness... Why you dont enjoy now? my friends asked to me...

You must evaluate your life, your skills, and your strengths and take a decission by yourself. Because anyone here can give you good advise, we dont know you, and we dont know your mind. You must take responsability and accountability and take decissions by yourself, so if you fail is yours and if you success also ir yours.

If you want support and people that understand you, here we are, but seeking advice about what decissions you should take and what direction you must follow, it is only yours.

PD:Sorry for my english, it is not my first lenguage.
 

Kung Fu Steve

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(Qualified) advice needed: I'll bring you "up to speed" as concisely as possible...

I got a degree in Mechanical Engineering (and hated it). Then went to grad school (in engineering - and hated it). Long story short, I dropped out...

I joined another program more focused on entrepreneurship, and quickly decided I could do it on my own without blowing 5-figures on tuition. So I dropped out... again...

To do what? I started a guitar school by walking door to door delivering flyers and putting out yard signs...

Fast forward a few months later, I discovered copywriting, landing pages, direct mail, and Google Adwords. Now I could sit at home (or the office) and have students come to me automatically...

Then I read The Millionaire Fastlane. I realized the direction I was heading wasn't a fit for my personality, and the business model was going to make it difficult to achieve my longer term goals. I wanted an internet business…

So while still "running" the school, I decided to start an "agency" doing Google and FB ads for clients (because apparently you could make the big $$ and not do the work). After working with a handful of clients and cold-calling CEOs every morning, eventually I dreaded getting out of bed. Lesson learned: doing it "for the money" isn't worth it...

So I turned my focus back to what I knew, what I was good at, and the "need" that was staring me in the face (students were coming to me because they weren't finding solutions to their problems elsewhere - and I knew how to solve them - and people were already buying solutions online)...

So I put 100% focus into building an online brand of advanced guitar training courses for those who want to freely improvise and write their own music...

For the past 9 months or so, I've been studying and working my a$$ off, and recently began testing the "launch" of my first training program...

…until my websites got hacked and shut down (for the 2nd time) a few days ago...at which point the results of the last 3-4 years of life choices have converged and hit me at once with a crushing weight...

Remember, the past does not equal the future... unless you choose to live there.

Here's the harsh, embarrassing truth (and where I need your help)...

I've been working ALONE for over 3 years. I've alienated old friends and given up most hobbies and fun activities. My girlfriend of 3 years and I broke up 6 months ago. I've been on the computer 24/7 trying to get this new business cash-flowing (which I realize now is going to take much longer than expected). As a result, I've found myself in a place with almost no social interaction, almost no income, and I feel like it's really starting to affect my mental health...

I wake up to me and only me every day. All day. I've lived in this city all my life (and have outgrown it), but I feel like I just moved here and don't know anyone. I have no debt and a very modest 5-figure savings, but only enough income to pay rent...

So the real reason I left Europe was 1.) yes, my visa was up... but I could have went back within 90 days... but 2.) I was in my apartment all day every day writing sales copy and chasing money that people owed me. It was a miserable way for me to live. So I completely understand what you're going through.

The truth will set you free. If you need to be around people -- go be around people! ... however I will say do some introspection. I didn't want a job. I've never wanted a job. My intent in taking my job here was to become one of the top players in the industry.

I wanted to be in personal development. Coaching and training has always been my skillset and passion. Teaching martial arts, teaching marketing, teaching offshore stuff -- whatever it was. That's my skillset. Every time in my life I got good at something was from the question "who is the best in the world at this and how do I get around them to learn their skillset?"

I’m almost 30, and my close friends have all gotten jobs, are married, have a house and/or kids, and seem to be doing well right now. And the pressure is weighing on me heavily. I feel “left behind”. It may sound ridiculous, but that’s how I feel nonetheless...

Time to go back to your UPW handbook!

Only 2 ways to change your life: change your life conditions or change your blueprint.

If you consistently think "life should be THIS way" and life ISN'T that way -- you're going to feel miserable. So change the conditions of your life or edit what you think life SHOULD be.

I’ve been considering getting a full-time job 1) to have some social interaction and 2) so I can take a “breath” - to take the pressure off of needing to get my online business off the ground RIGHT NOW, and 3) learn some new skills…

You have a bigger and better skillset than any typical employee. It would be very easy walking into a company, start producing results, and earn what you're worth... from my own experience -- I would only say "if you had to work for someone... who would it be?" or "if you WANTED to work for someone, who would it be?" and "if you were going to work for someone, what do you really want to earn?"

The number 50 employee at Facebook made a shitton more money than most of the people we know...

I’ve also considered the negative consequences of a full-time job - most importantly the TIME aspect. However, I feel like the most important thing for me right now is a CHANGE and some level of variety in life. So I’ve considered looking for jobs in a new city...

What is the negative consequence of time? You won't have enough? You won't experience life? What's the hope? To cash out billions and sit around all day?

Knowing my future goals lie in entrepreneurship, location independence, and a family, what are possible solutions to this situation right now? What am I overlooking? What questions should I be asking? How should/can I change my thinking to get out of this place in life?

In the right emotional state -- you know the answer. Get in your head, you're dead. If you don't make decisions from the heart you're going to be screwing yourself again and again. Worried about what some random goofballs on an internet forum think about your life.

You should be priming daily: Priming Exercise - Tony Robbins

Get clarity on the goals. What are your goals REALLY? Entrepreneurship just for the sake of being an entrepreneur? What's the 5-year, 10-year?
 

Get Right

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Nothing wrong with a job. Most people have them. Just make sure you are getting one for the right reason.

Make sure you aren't trying to avoid the hard stuff though (the walls). In your description you mentioned dropping out twice, being alone, working too hard. These are walls. These are what keep your competitors out. Right now they are keeping YOU out.

Take care of yourself, just make sure it is YOUR decision and not just another wall. If you choose to climb the walls, just ask for help here. A lot of us have a bunch of climbing experience :)
 

Jonathan Boyd

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Where are you at right now with regards to generating income?

I am 30 as well right now, have full-time employment and am working on a side business/high-ticket skill at the same time. Ideally, if you can I would recommend working on your business full-time, but if you don't have a source of income I would put your full focus on generating money for a period of time.

One of the best points I've heard on this forum is that sometimes as we go down this path, we start to think we are better than the friends and family that are/were in our lives. If you can, continue to surround yourself with high-level people but look to connect with the people that really matter in your life, or from the past.

The worst thing you can do to yourself right now is to continue down this path alone. If you aren't having success and then are also in a place where you are alone, I can't see that being a positive going forward.

Which of these skills could you start to capitalize on and use right now?

Dunkafelics, thanks for your input. As far as generating income, I still teach a handful of students. Ironically, teaching more ADDs to the "isolation" issue.

I've been working on this business full time for a few months. The situation I'm at now though is that I need more income to 1) live and 2) test ads.

As far as working full-time and working on your business on the side, what have you done to increase/maximize your productivity and time you can spend on your side business?

You made a good point about "going down this path and we think we're better"... I've already made that mistake and am learning to reconnect with people.

Again, you're right about going down this path alone; it's taking longer than expected to get up and running (because it's all a SKILL of course), and it's to the point where I have to change what I'm doing to continue moving forward.

>>>Which of those skills can I capitalize on right now?
I'm using all of them now with the new business. But it hit me that I could leverage these skills to find a job part-time (or full time) to work for an agency (or some other internet marketing position). That way I could learn more applicable skills on the job, potentially get more selling experience, friggin' TALK TO PEOPLE haha, and maybe even get paid to go to conferences (that I already go to). BOOM! Thanks for the question.
 

Jonathan Boyd

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1. You sound like someone who is jumping from thing-to-thing
2. You have NO idea what people are going through- IE: Your friends "look" successful but maybe they hate their lives.
3. You can have relationships women at any age. 30 is just a number.
4. Move if you feel like it. Go somewhere new, get a job and retrain your brain with positive habits.

1. I told the "condensed" version of the story, so it seems like I'm "jumping around" more than I am/did. (However, I DID go through that phase at the beginning). I can assure you now I'm focused on ONE business and ONE goal.
2. You're totally right. And I try to remind myself of that.
3. Again, good point. I've just been stuck in a loop of "stinkin' thinkin'" as Zig Ziglar called it.
4. Feels like that may be a good call. I've got to break these negative patterns. That's all it is.
 

Dunkafelics

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Dunkafelics, thanks for your input. As far as generating income, I still teach a handful of students. Ironically, teaching more ADDs to the "isolation" issue.

I've been working on this business full time for a few months. The situation I'm at now though is that I need more income to 1) live and 2) test ads.

As far as working full-time and working on your business on the side, what have you done to increase/maximize your productivity and time you can spend on your side business?

You made a good point about "going down this path and we think we're better"... I've already made that mistake and am learning to reconnect with people.

Again, you're right about going down this path alone; it's taking longer than expected to get up and running (because it's all a SKILL of course), and it's to the point where I have to change what I'm doing to continue moving forward.

>>>Which of those skills can I capitalize on right now?
I'm using all of them now with the new business. But it hit me that I could leverage these skills to find a job part-time (or full time) to work for an agency (or some other internet marketing position). That way I could learn more applicable skills on the job, potentially get more selling experience, friggin' TALK TO PEOPLE haha, and maybe even get paid to go to conferences (that I already go to). BOOM! Thanks for the question.

There are definitely people on this forum who can provide better answers with regards to the specific path you are going down for sure. It would be great if a few others at a higher level could provide some input here.

With regards to productivity, I'll throw another curve ball in and say that I also have a family so my time is limited.

It has been a learning process, but I get up at 4 AM before my wife and child are awake and work for about three hours. I then get periods throughout the day that I can put in some extra time and at night. It is definitely not the ideal strategy, but it is working now and keeps everyone happy and onboard.

The piece that keeps me productive is that I have specific goals in place and also utilize the Pomodoro Technique for staying focused and on-task because every minute in my life counts right now.

With regards to your skills, could you utilize the copywriting and landing page development and sell it as a service? I am pretty sure with a little prospecting and networking, you could turn into a profitable skill for the time being to generate income.

Take some serious consideration with regards to getting a JOB. It is great for earning the income, but it may get in the way of your business aspirations. Either way, I am sure that you will make the decision that is best for you.
 

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Jonathan Boyd

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Have you considered doing youtube? Creating a youtube channel showing your talent and then selling the course, seems more logical than just pushing out a product on the internet..
Yes, YouTube would be part of my marketing mix in the long run. If you "push out" a product on the internet, no one will ever see it. I've been running Facebook traffic (because the targeting is so awesome) to a webinar funnel which sells my program (and builds my list).
 

Jonathan Boyd

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Hello,

here is my personal opinion without knowing you or your situation.

I think that the road we decided to take is a difficult one, like the slowlane or sidewalk road, but when you are a fastlaner you look thing like most people dont and you sacrifice the now for a better future. You must disconect of slowlaners or sidewalker realitys, they live their live like everyone, and you cant compare yourself with them, because they had things now, but the things that the world give them. but we are looking and working for having the things and the live WE WANT, anything is given to us, we are fighting everyday, with ourselves and with the world. FIghting our thoughts of giving up, fighting everyones thoughts about us and our madness... Why you dont enjoy now? my friends asked to me...

You must evaluate your life, your skills, and your strengths and take a decission by yourself. Because anyone here can give you good advise, we dont know you, and we dont know your mind. You must take responsability and accountability and take decissions by yourself, so if you fail is yours and if you success also ir yours.

If you want support and people that understand you, here we are, but seeking advice about what decissions you should take and what direction you must follow, it is only yours.

PD:Sorry for my english, it is not my first lenguage.

Thanks for your input. To be clear, I make my own decisions. I knew that this forum is full of people who may understand my situation (much better than "normal people" in everyday life), and I'm simply here to change my thinking. Others have better/different strategies and ideas that I haven't thought of. They can call me on my BS (which is what we need sometimes). And they can bring up new ideas and options I'm not able to see from my current perspective.

This forum is a fantastic resource full of resourceful people. So I'm using it. And also squashing any stupid fear of embarrassment. I'm here to solve problems, not look cool. :) Thanks for your words.
 

Jonathan Boyd

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Remember, the past does not equal the future... unless you choose to live there.

So the real reason I left Europe was 1.) yes, my visa was up... but I could have went back within 90 days... but 2.) I was in my apartment all day every day writing sales copy and chasing money that people owed me. It was a miserable way for me to live. So I completely understand what you're going through.

The truth will set you free. If you need to be around people -- go be around people! ... however I will say do some introspection. I didn't want a job. I've never wanted a job. My intent in taking my job here was to become one of the top players in the industry.

I wanted to be in personal development. Coaching and training has always been my skillset and passion. Teaching martial arts, teaching marketing, teaching offshore stuff -- whatever it was. That's my skillset. Every time in my life I got good at something was from the question "who is the best in the world at this and how do I get around them to learn their skillset?"

Time to go back to your UPW handbook!

Only 2 ways to change your life: change your life conditions or change your blueprint.

If you consistently think "life should be THIS way" and life ISN'T that way -- you're going to feel miserable. So change the conditions of your life or edit what you think life SHOULD be.

You have a bigger and better skillset than any typical employee. It would be very easy walking into a company, start producing results, and earn what you're worth... from my own experience -- I would only say "if you had to work for someone... who would it be?" or "if you WANTED to work for someone, who would it be?" and "if you were going to work for someone, what do you really want to earn?"

The number 50 employee at Facebook made a shitton more money than most of the people we know...

What is the negative consequence of time? You won't have enough? You won't experience life? What's the hope? To cash out billions and sit around all day?

In the right emotional state -- you know the answer. Get in your head, you're dead. If you don't make decisions from the heart you're going to be screwing yourself again and again. Worried about what some random goofballs on an internet forum think about your life.

You should be priming daily: Priming Exercise - Tony Robbins

Get clarity on the goals. What are your goals REALLY? Entrepreneurship just for the sake of being an entrepreneur? What's the 5-year, 10-year?

Steve! Saving the day again I see ;). Thanks for chiming in man. Good reminder - "the past does not equal the future".

I completely relate to your "apartment sales copy" life right now.

I say this jokingly, but it may be true - I think I've done more introspection than most people do in a lifetime. My intent in taking a job would be to further the SKILLS that I want to great at (direct marketing) - and as a side benefit, for now, it would alleviate the social issue, the income issue, and break some of these negative patterns, at least for the time being.

Don't worry, just pulled out my UPW handbook and put it on my pillow. Bingo.

Teaching is part of my skillset as well. And you make a great point. "Who is the best in the world, and how can I be around them." Oddly enough, before I read your post, I started asking myself this question too. And the answers are leading the way and giving me ideas and direction.

As far as having a better skillset (and more importantly - attitude and drive) as the average employee, I agree, and I fully believe that.

If I had to work for someone, who would it be: Right now, Todd Brown. If my goal was to earn income from a job only, how much would ideally want to earn? $150k - however I'd like to grow my business and earn $150k/mo... and I know it's possible with the specific business I'm in.

As far as the time question, I'd like to work with people I care about toward a common goal that I care about (impacts people in a positive way), have a family, and enjoy connecting with friends/family over everyday activities/sports/travel/etc. I don't want to sit around all day. I've already done that. And it's not what I'm after. I've never minded, and in fact even enjoy working long hours if it meets the above criteria. When I wrote that comment about time originally, I had in mind having time enough to work on my side business (outside of a job) AND having enough time to connect with people I care about (as opposed to total isolation).

I think I've been "screwing myself" again and again because logically, it makes more sense to get more students and "pound out" this new business. But my heart keeps saying that's not the way.

I AM getting back into the routine of priming. I "fell off the horse" there for a week or so and go figure... my thinking's gone down hill.

Goals? I think I'm getting over the ego trip of saying "I'm an entrepreneur". I just want my needs met of course (and to be happy) - and by needs I mean "human needs", not basic survival. At this point, if that's working with/for someone (assuming it meets my working criteria above) who cares? In fact, I'd rather work WITH people to achieve my goals. My business is just a vehicle to generate cash to fund investments. The goal 5-10 years was/is to have an asset which is feeding my investments, providing location independence, which I'm not "tied down" to on a daily basis (runs on systems). This way, I can spend more time with my family, traveling (if I want to), and working on work that's meaningful to me (whatever form that takes) which I don't have to rely on for income.

Thanks for asking these questions, they've been very helpful.
 

Real Deal Denver

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Hmmm. Lots of good advice here. I'll take a different approach.

I don't see you lacking in any way - maybe suffering burn out, but not lacking in skills or intelligence, or experience.

First of all, quit beating yourself up. You have skills that everyone would envy.

Secondly, I think you just need to regroup. If I had your skill set, I'd - wait for it - I'd - I hope you can handle the truth - I'd form a band. Or go solo. Either way - perform. I think you need to get back to your roots, and it certainly would help you to be appreciated. I don't say this lightly. I have a friend that was the lead singer for a national band. His band cut CDs - gave concerts - the whole shea bang. Lived life large. Then, he got fired. Who fires their lead singer? Talk about being slammed to the ground! What did he do? In very short order, he constructed his own band and was back in business. That feat alone verified to himself that he was not a failure, and he was not going to let someone else define him as one either! Bravo! It's in the dark moments that you find out who you are and you reach into yourself for the strength that you didn't know you had.

So, the point is this - he got back on his feet. If you are doing something you love, and getting respect, you will rebuild yourself. You can't be in the fast lane with no gas in your tank. Recharge.

Or, take a vacation. Recharge and find out all that you have that others see and admire. No matter who you are, you can't just give give give all the time. You have to have input that makes you realize that you are talented, you are worthy, and you can succeed.

You have already succeeded, so that one doesn't need to be said. When you can be HAPPY, and are stabilized in your financial life, then you can look for the path(s) to take you to the next level. But you are in no mind set right now to do that.

I have done a lot - with much less than you have. And I don't consider myself a failure, even though my skill set is many times LESS than what you have.

Focus on your goals. Everyone has fears and doubts. Those are the things that you see when you take your eyes off your goals. You can't ever get rid of them, but you can learn to ignore them.

Go back in time, when you didn't have your Mech Design degree, and were not a guitar pro. Look at yourself from THAT vantage point. You should like what you see, very much. Now, build on that. Build on what you are, not what you could have been. You are much more than you realize.
 
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Jonathan Boyd

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There are definitely people on this forum who can provide better answers with regards to the specific path you are going down for sure. It would be great if a few others at a higher level could provide some input here.

With regards to productivity, I'll throw another curve ball in and say that I also have a family so my time is limited.

It has been a learning process, but I get up at 4 AM before my wife and child are awake and work for about three hours. I then get periods throughout the day that I can put in some extra time and at night. It is definitely not the ideal strategy, but it is working now and keeps everyone happy and onboard.

The piece that keeps me productive is that I have specific goals in place and also utilize the Pomodoro Technique for staying focused and on-task because every minute in my life counts right now.

With regards to your skills, could you utilize the copywriting and landing page development and sell it as a service? I am pretty sure with a little prospecting and networking, you could turn into a profitable skill for the time being to generate income.

Take some serious consideration with regards to getting a JOB. It is great for earning the income, but it may get in the way of your business aspirations. Either way, I am sure that you will make the decision that is best for you.

It sounds like you have a good reason to be driven to get up that early.

The Pomodoro Technique definitely helps me as well (although I often forget to use it).

I agree with your idea about utilizing copywriting/page development skills for income. However the problem isn't finding a way to generate income, I can get more guitar students reasonably easily; both of those options add to the real problem for me right now which is isolation.

I literally just asked about working mornings at a coffee shop - maybe that would fulfill enough of the social need so I could get more students (if need be) and continue working on the online business.

I haven't had a "job" in 3 years, so it's interesting thinking about being on someone else's schedule to say the least.

Either way, thanks for your encouragement. Best of luck to you as well. It sounds like you're "chugging" along.
 

Jonathan Boyd

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Nothing wrong with a job. Most people have them. Just make sure you are getting one for the right reason.

Make sure you aren't trying to avoid the hard stuff though (the walls). In your description you mentioned dropping out twice, being alone, working too hard. These are walls. These are what keep your competitors out. Right now they are keeping YOU out.

Take care of yourself, just make sure it is YOUR decision and not just another wall. If you choose to climb the walls, just ask for help here. A lot of us have a bunch of climbing experience :)

Good to see this perspective. I don't consider a "job" a career if that makes sense - every time I've had one, I've always schemed a way to get out of it... which I suppose is why I am where I am today. However, in this case, I don't see it as an "out", but a supplement.

Thanks for pointing out avoiding the "walls". I've always been a great starter, but with poor follow through (entrepreneur trait, eh?). And I've been very aware this time around about catching myself subconsciously "finding a way out", another path, shiny objects, etc. But the business that I'm building now is what I wanted to build from the very beginning, but avoided it (the reasons are another topic).

I can honestly say, as another reply pointed out, I believe I'm simply burnt out, and have been trying to push the pedal further into the floor with no gas in the tank. To keep moving forward, I need to rejuvenate/replenish. I feel that.

The story of the Rower from the book "Wink and Grow Rich" comes to mind. (One of my favorite books for those who haven't read it - super short read).

I'm learning. And I can assure you I'm becoming a better climber. Thanks for "the hand up" ;)
 

Jonathan Boyd

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Hmmm. Lots of good advice here. I'll take a different approach.

I don't see you lacking in any way - maybe suffering burn out, but not lacking in skills or intelligence, or experience.

First of all, quit beating yourself up. You have skills that everyone would envy.

Secondly, I think you just need to regroup. If I had your skill set, I'd - wait for it - I'd - I hope you can handle the truth - I'd form a band. Or go solo. Either way - perform. I think you need to get back to your roots, and it certainly would help you to be appreciated. I don't say this lightly. I have a friend that was the lead singer for a national band. His band cut CDs - gave concerts - the whole shea bang. Lived life large. Then, he got fired. Who fires their lead singer? Talk about being slammed to the ground! What did he do? In very short order, he constructed his own band and was back in business. That feat alone verified to himself that he was not a failure, and he was not going to let someone else define him as one either! Bravo! It's in the dark moments that you find out who you are and you reach into yourself for the strength that you didn't know you had.

So, the point is this - he got back on his feet. If you are doing something you love, and getting respect, you will rebuild yourself. You can't be in the fast lane with no gas in your tank. Recharge.

Or, take a vacation. Recharge and find out all that you have that others see and admire. No matter who you are, you can't just give give give all the time. You have to have input that makes you realize that you are talented, you are worthy, and you can succeed.

You have already succeeded, so that one doesn't need to be said. When you can be HAPPY, and are stabilized in your financial life, then you can look for the path(s) to take you to the next level. But you are in no mind set right now to do that.

I have done a lot - with much less than you have. And I don't consider myself a failure, even though my skill set is many times LESS than what you have.

Focus on your goals. Everyone has fears and doubts. Those are the things that you see when you take your eyes off your goals. You can't ever get rid of them, but you can learn to ignore them.

Go back in time, when you didn't have your Mech Design degree, and were not a guitar pro. Look at yourself from THAT vantage point. You should like what you see, very much. Now, build on that. Build on what you are, not what you could have been. You are much more than you realize.

Man, this is great. Thanks for posting. I needed to hear it. And yes, I think you're dead on about being burned out.

Believe it or not, I've been in bands more or less for the last 12 years. And my most recent (and best and most fun) band broke up about 8-9 months ago when our drummer moved to Seattle. The bass player and I have actually talked about forming a "soul/motown" band just for fun, but I've been avoiding it so I'd have more time to work on the business. But maybe I should take him up on it.

I'll be 100% transparent here as well. I know I have skills. And as you said, I haven't been getting any input that those skills are worthy/I have talent/etc. so all I've felt is frustration because I feel like those skills aren't being used or appreciated. It's a very tough place to be in.

What I've also noticed is this: focusing on my goals... in isolation... seems to render those goals meaningless. It takes the WHY out of my "sail" and removes the motivation to accomplish those goals. Why? I suppose being alone now and being alone with a business feels about the same... with more customer support problems lol. My "whys" include, are motivated by, or necessitate other people. The word "ubuntu" comes to mind - "I am because we are".

I really appreciate your post. Responding, oddly enough, has been somewhat of a self-discovery process. Thank you.
 

Jonathan Boyd

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... Just found this in another thread:

"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. One of the quickest routes to depression is shutting yourself away from the world and not doing anything that gives you enjoyment."

Bingo.
 

Real Deal Denver

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UPDATE: Just made my first sale in my new business...while I was drinking wine and playing drums!! Perfect timing ;).
All righttttty then. No surprise to me.

We need the juicy details. What kind of business is it exactly that you made a sale in? How much was the sale? Are they tie ins that might expand this sale into more sales?

And most of all, congratulations. A big pat on the back for doing what you knew you could do all along. Even the best race horses need a rest every now and then. :thumbsup:
 

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Sanj Modha

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First and foremost - don't give up!

We've all been here and anyone who says they haven't is lying to you. 3 years is great life experience so go back and make a list of everything that worked or didn't work

I do this every quarter now and draw out a table with two columns: Worked/Didn't Work. Also, look at Tim Ferris' 'Fear Setting' because that really helped me when I was down.

Dissect the last 3 years and you'll find your path. Money isn't the destination. Money gives you options so make a list of your goals - what is it you want then work backwards to achieve it.

I know if I want to make $500 in Feb - I can offer services for $10 and I would need to close 50 sales or roughly 2 orders per day. Keep it basic and then scale up with bigger targets.

I highly recommend reading Principles by Ray Dalio - it will teach you sooooo much.
 

Nahuelcassino

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To be clear, I make my own decisions. I knew that this forum is full of people who may understand my situation (much better than "normal people" in everyday life), and I'm simply here to change my thinking. Others have better/different strategies and ideas that I haven't thought of. They can call me on my BS (which is what we need sometimes). And they can bring up new ideas and options I'm not able to see from my current perspective.

You are right, this forum is fantastic for reading opinions of others that think like us and that may have other points of view about the same decission or situation. I only want to give you my personal point of view, but only for contributing with my own experience.

This forum is a fantastic resource full of resourceful people. So I'm using it. And also squashing any stupid fear of embarrassment. I'm here to solve problems, not look cool. :) Thanks for your words.

I hope that you find your answers, and you can go out of the situation you dont like. If you need something, here we are!!

I wish you the best!!
 

Jonathan Boyd

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All righttttty then. No surprise to me.

We need the juicy details. What kind of business is it exactly that you made a sale in? How much was the sale? Are they tie ins that might expand this sale into more sales?

And most of all, congratulations. A big pat on the back for doing what you knew you could do all along. Even the best race horses need a rest every now and then. :thumbsup:

:). Juicy details: I'm selling an 8-week guitar improvisation program. The business is a brand that sells info-products: guitar training programs. This just happens to be my first product "launch" for this business.

How am I selling it? FB ads > Automated Webinar

I only spent $65 in FB ads before my sites were hacked (and I shut off traffic). The sale came a couple days later (I talked to the customer on the phone) - he left the checkout page up on his computer for a couple days while he convinced his wife. Sale was 5 payments of $67. So $67 cart value.

Presumably, more sales may come from more traffic. Just now tightening up the security issues (got the sites back up and running).

Now I'm actually looking for jobs just to have some income (to pay rent and be able to run more ads).

Thank you for the Congrats. Love the race horse analogy.

Also, today I was at a coffee shop and overheard a couple of guys talking about business. I waited until they were done then approached the oldest guy. Turns out, he ran a hugely successful Orthodontic practice, and we actually sat down and talked for about an hour. Got his number and will meet up with him periodically.
 

Jonathan Boyd

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First and foremost - don't give up!

We've all been here and anyone who says they haven't is lying to you. 3 years is great life experience so go back and make a list of everything that worked or didn't work

I do this every quarter now and draw out a table with two columns: Worked/Didn't Work. Also, look at Tim Ferris' 'Fear Setting' because that really helped me when I was down.

Dissect the last 3 years and you'll find your path. Money isn't the destination. Money gives you options so make a list of your goals - what is it you want then work backwards to achieve it.

I know if I want to make $500 in Feb - I can offer services for $10 and I would need to close 50 sales or roughly 2 orders per day. Keep it basic and then scale up with bigger targets.

I highly recommend reading Principles by Ray Dalio - it will teach you sooooo much.

Thanks man. I've just put it on my "to-do" list for tomorrow to make the list of what did and didn't work over the last three years. Excited to see the clarity that list will bring.

I'm definitely familiar with Tim Ferris' "fear setting", and will review it for good measure.

Believe it or not, Principles is currently sitting on my "coffee table", about 20% read. :)
 

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