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EXECUTION Underdog - Attempt to earn €10k in 90 days [Journey]

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UnderdogStrategy

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For a series of reasons I need to earn €10k in 90 days.

As every journey that deserves respect, let's start with the story of my life: so, I was born...
Just kidding, I spare you that.

Strategy

Current assets:

  • Upwork profile with one 5-star review and “Rising Talent” badge
  • One real client project (full website, no upwork)
  • A bunch of “demo” websites for different niches
  • Skillset: web design, web development, Webflow, Figma, HTML/CSS/JS, SEO and I’m getting better at Google Ads (I get into it thanks to Andy Black’s course: MARKETPLACE - Andy's $15/mth Google Ads Bootcamp )

Time
I can realistically put 6 hours of pure focus (time blocking) every day, 7/7.
42hrs/week.



Activities

1. Upwork

Probably my best option.
As I mentioned, 5 star review and Rising Talent badge, hence there’s already something to work with.
With the only job I had I earned 1k in one week, that’s why I feel Upwork can make a good percentage of the results in this journey.

The current hire rate is 1 out of 40 proposals sent and had around 5 interviews so far.

Just finished Lex DeVille’s course: Advanced Upwork Proposals: Tips to 10X Client Responses Fast which I found very insightful. I'll try to apply the new knowledge to improve proposals and increase my chances to land new jobs.

Checking Upwork daily and sending around 3-5 meaningful proposals every day.

2.Web Design Leads with FB Ads
This is a quick operation.
Setting up a landing page like “Web Design for specific-niche” (leveraging the existing project and testimonial), creating FB Ads and targeting everyone who has that job title in their demographics.
Budget: up to €100 of ad spend
Time: 6 hours max


3. Lead Generation Agency: Google Ads Audits

I’m oriented towards building a local lead generation agency, so I want to start going in that direction as well.
This activity consists in finding people who are messing up with Google Ads and letting them know they’re wasting lots of money doing “X”.
I’ll then try to offer a free Audit and eventually a one month trial for management at a low fee.
I’ll start on Monday with 5-10 per day.


4. Lead Generation Agency: The Gift
Pick a niche, pick a city, if it seems exploitable, create a landing page and run the ads till I get some leads.
Try to outreach the related businesses offering the leads for free and open a conversation from there.
This activity is good because I can achieve real results and increase my confidence in selling this service.
It’s risky because I would have to invest some money upfront and no guarantees it’s going to work.



Last thoughts
I think achieving €10k/90 days is possible, but extremely difficult.
The biggest amount of money I’ve ever seen in 3 months has been around €3.5k ←three salaries from a 9 to 5 job.

It would be an extraordinary result and achieving something like that requires extraordinary actions, daily discipline and focus.

Lastly, gotta keep in check action faking and shiny objects syndrome.
I’ve been fooling myself for months. Doing stuff like rebuilding my own site 6 times and such.
I think a public diary might be helpful to stay on track.

Updating daily.
 

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UnderdogStrategy

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Day #1

Some bad stuff first.
I've completely f*cked up my schedule.
After weeks waking up at 6 AM I get back waking up at 11 AM. Gotta say I've been sick this week (not covid apparently) but it's not an excuse.

Good news.
Well, nice way to start this journey.
I got my second project on Upwork!
It's a small and short project (finished in a couple of hours) but I'm happy about it.
More five star reviews and soon I should get the Top Rated badge (hence, get more invitations and get hired more).

Other activities.
Getting organized to perform Google Ads audit and outreach from Monday.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #2
Not much to report.

Upwork was desert, just sent one proposal.
Spent the rest of the day getting organized for Google Ads outreach and watching YT videos about it (...)
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #3
Hustling on Upwork all day.

Sent 6 proposals (it took me hours).
1 interview.
0 new job landed so far.

For one of this proposal I've invested 2 hours creating a demo (giving value upfront).
I've seen the the number of people interviewed for that job post increasing hours after I sent my proposal, but I've been completely ignored.
Honestly it sucks, I felt stupid and like two precious hours have been wasted.
But nevermind.


Upwork game self-analysis.
One of the reason why i lose jobs are my rates.
I set up a job post in my same niche to check out the competition.
I don't stand a chance (on price) against people bidding $8/hr or $12/hr.
Even people from USA or Europe have prices around $15/20 per hour.
My current minimum is $25/hr but I often bid around $40 if the client has a past history of hourly payments around 30 and so.

Second reason, my portfolio sucks.
People around there probably wants to see fancy stuff that gives the "wow" effect.
I just do clean/minimalist/effective websites because I'm more oriented on results, so probably my portfolio just feel average and doesn't stand out.

I will keep pushing on sending proposals, at the end of the day I don't have much choice.
This week's goal is landing a mid-size project (between $500-$1000 minimum).
I can't control that, but I can keep sending meaningful proposals every day.

-----

I also got some ideas regarding how can i get a foot in the door in this market.

First, I can "buy" case studies running campaign for specific niches myself.
I would have to invest money upfront, but if I can generate leads and turn that into a Case Study I'll then have something to use to leverage people in that specific vertical.
And obviously I can try to sell or give away those leads.

Tomorrow I will take some time to get the Google Search Ads certification.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #4
Woke up before 8am, in a matters of few day I'll be back into the 6am morning club.

Start to track time after long time I lost this precious habit.
Tracking time IS the #1 productivity hack.
You can't fool yourself at the end of the day, because it's everything written.
Did the 6 hours of time blocking as planned.

Upwork
6 proposals sent.
Got one invitation to interview, I replied but didn't hear back. Tomorrow I'll try to follow-up having the chat open.
0 job landed.

Local Lead Gen
Got Google Search Ads certification (whatever it might worth).

Tomorrow I'll start doing some market analysis.
I need to find a good niche to start produce leads for.


Keep moving forward.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #5
Unproductive day.
Woke up between 6-7 am and been a zombie all day long.

Upwork was desert, just sent 2 proposals.
0 interview.
0 job landed.

Spent the rest of the time fighting with doubts about what I'm doing.
Not sleeping well always makes my mind weaker.
I'm not comfortable in seeking for PPC clients because I never had real results in PPC yet.
I need to get something to prove myself I can really add value to a business.



2.Web Design Leads with FB Ads
This is a quick operation.
Setting up a landing page like “Web Design for specific-niche” (leveraging the existing project and testimonial), creating FB Ads and targeting everyone who has that job title in their demographics.
Budget: up to €100 of ad spend
Time: 6 hours max
I called off this operation.
The reason is simple: I don't want to work with that niche.
I'll spare those money for a G-ads campaign.

Keep thinking how I can get into the PPC world and making money at the same time I asked myself: perhaps can I partner up with someone who's already in the field? What value can I bring to them (if any)?

With my current skillset I can create pretty good and conversion oriented Landing Pages.
Perhaps someone in PPC would benefit from outsourcing the landing page part to someone who speaks the same language?
I don't know yet. I'll explore the market thoughts about it talking to PPC people around the web.


Tomorrow I need to stick to the plan and having a campaign running by the end of the week.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #6

6 new proposals sent on Upwork.
1 interview.
0 job landed.

I think I found a niche to play with on Google Ads.
CPC is quite good, €0.6, and volumes are promising.



Content Production
Due to the short-term nature of this journey I'm completely ignoring content production.
I believe it to be one of the most valuable activity I could do to get results in the long term.
Is it probably a big mistake? Keep asking myself this question.

Self-Analysis & Harsh Truth (probably Rant)
It sucks.
Almost one week is gone and I don't see any progress, nor the light at the end of the tunnel.
I'm not disciplined. I don't stick to my own plan. I get distracted continuously.
A health issues is getting worst day by day and making things awful: infact, i'm not working out since 2 weeks and working out was the only activity that helped me let the stress out, relax and clear my mind.

Am I giving all I have? No.
Not even the barely minimum.
6 proposals per day on Upwork? And what's that? Just a more action-oriented action faking i guess.

The truth is I don't like deal with people.
I fed myself up with business/freelancing success stories and only common pattern I found is being good with people, or at least talking to people.
99% of myself just want to avoid that part of the equation.
This is the real reason why I action fake.
This is why when I see a notification on my phone, instead of being excited, I deeply hope it's not an Upwork interview, cause I might have to talk with someone on the phone/videocall.
Yeah, that's what really happens in my mind.

I've never been that brilliant in socializing but I could manage it more or less.
After 6 months of no social interactions due to lock downs I feel very very uncomfortable, even more than before.

All of this to say I better spend my days emailing hundreds of people, contacting people on social media, wherever, the point is investing time in creating connection in any way possible. There's no grow inside this comfort zone.
All the rest is fooling myself.

Let me tell you one more thing. I didn't report this.
But I said I would have posted for all the 90 days, no matter what, with honesty.
Even if this is gonna be an awful, shameful journey of daily failures.
Last Saturday I received my first inbound call. I didn't pick it up.
Figured it out later it was probably from the GMB account. I looked up at the number and it was someone with a never-heard-before profession (fb page and all). But it was an inbound lead.
Guess what? I didn't call back.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #7
Every time i rant about something, things immediately get better.
I should rant more often lol

6 proposal sent.
5 interview.
2 jobs landed.

I think the crazy increase in conversion rate is due to changing the profile picture on Upwork.
Yeah, those details can make a huge difference.

Jobs are small and quick, which is good to build more review and connect with more people.

Rest of the day I didn't do that much.
Had a good talk with some forum members and I keep thinking about slim things down, pick one single project and focus 100% on it.

Tomorrow I'll be 100% on the Upwork jobs.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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DAY #8
Focused all day long on a Upwork project (small website design).
Completed and delivered, tomorrow I gotta go through the changes.

Wanted to start the second project as well but we need to figure out some access stuff so I'll start that project on Monday.

Didn't have the time to send new proposals.

Self-Analysis (without rant today lol)
When i have a job, I'm extremely focused.
I crank hours and hours of work without any distraction.

Was a good reminder. Often I say to myself I can't focus, but that's not true: I can and pretty well.

So the reality is that I'm unfocused when i have to work just for myself.
I need to translate this skill to my own personal activities.

"Let's see what happens"
^ this is the new "mindset" i want to adopt.
I have too many ideas but I don't execute enough.
"Let's see what happens" means focus on a specific task/process without trying to calculate the outcome upfront.
Be open, be curious. Just do it and see what comes out of that.
It's "buying data" rather than planning ahead without the data (which is a paradox).

Create a landing page offering a service targeting a very specific niche and reach out to hundreds of people in that specific niche. What is gonna happen?

Contact 100 biz which are losing money on stupid mistakes and offer advice for free. What is gonna happen?

---

Tomorrow I'll try to finalize one of these Upwork projects and send new proposals.
I'll chose ONE "let's see what happens" activity to carry out next week.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Keep it up man! Interesting to see a change in your profile picture could bump your success rate up like that. Maybe its a result of your hustle with getting interviews.

Thanks.

For real, it was surprising.
It makes sense though, it's one of the first thing that people see and it has a huge impact in inspiring trustworthiness.

Perhaps was a lucky shot, let's see next week how it goes.
 

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Speed112

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Honestly it sucks, I felt stupid and like two precious hours have been wasted.

Try not to think like this. No time is wasted. You've at the very least practiced your proposal game which will improve your interview rate over time and increase the value of this groundwork.

One of the reason why i lose jobs are my rates.

If you truly believe this, then why are you in the same price range as all these people? Is that really such a big differentiating factor?

If you bid $40/hr and others bid $5/hr there needs to be a great reason why you're charging 8 times more.

Does your portfolio truly suck? Or is it pointing out a flaw in the market: most people focus on form over function. What if THEIR portfolios suck because they showcase design ability instead of practical ability?

I started off with $15/hr on oDesk writing copy many years ago. I slowly built that up to 25, then 40, then 60, 80. Eventually, I got to 150 and I deleted my account.

I came back years later and what did I do? Start at $15 again fighting for scraps with all the noobs? No, I started at $80 and I still ended up charging people ~150/hr due to charging flat fees. I got projects with 0 reviews, a crappy portfolio that is just text on an image, and really really good proposals. If I charged $30/hr I bet I would've been lost in the sea of competitors and would have had to work 10 times as hard to get those initial clients.

But I'm an expert.

Experts are in demand. I don't need to chase after clients. They should be the ones chasing after me. Giving off this vibe by half-assing certain parts (the ones that really don't matter) and doubling down on the ones that matter (what's in it for them) works just as well if not better than going hard in all areas of your outreach.

Yes, this goes against general advice, of starting off small, building up your client base, testimonials, case studies, then ramp up...

But who cares about that?

Can you offer someone thousands of dollars of value with a few hours of work? If so, then pricing yourself in the same range as the hordes of incompetents who waste people's time and spend dozens of hours building useless trash is probably inefficient.

Something to keep in mind, and probably to aim for when you've got more valuable things to do with your time than writing 2 hour long proposals for $100 projects.

In any case, awesome progress so far. You're definitely going the right way, so keep it up and things will snowball for sure.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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DAY #9
Super short daily update.

Worked on a Upwork project.

No proposals sent.
Got a new interview from a proposal of last week.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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"Your mistakes list should be longer."

Yeah.
Making mistakes is good.
Saying: "i was nervous, i sucked, but I did it" is a good feeling.
The longer is the list of mistakes, the more real action you're making.


DAY #10
This morning I had some free time, while waiting clients input to continue my current Upwork projects (all clients are from US at the moment, so mornings are silent luckily).

I decided to pick one single project from the many I have in mind, and stick to it till failure or success.

Here's how I jump on a new project from scratch.


First, I headed to Asana and create a new project there.
Created a bunch of cards in the kanban board outlining the main phases.
Went into each cards and break it down further, into small actionable activities.
That's all.
lol


I put a couple of hours of focus into it and got Wireframes & Draft of copy ready.

*About this project*
It's basically web design services for a very specific niche.
The niche is hot, trendy, in constant growth since years and kind of blowing up this year more than ever.
It's a niche that can get huge benefits from having a website.
The demand for web design services is also growing, as I observed during some research on the specific reddit threads.
I couldn't find any competitor targeting this specific niche; i mean, there are some, but more generalist and not completely focused on web design & dev for this industry.
Lastly, this niche has a lot of other "digital needs", so I sense an opportunity for growth.
It is worth a shot.

The plan is:
1. Setting up a cool and slim Landing Page (benefits, process, additional services, cta)
2. Run Reddit Ads (very big community there)

That's it. I'll spend a bit of money on reddit ads and see what comes out of that.

----

Upwork
Sent 2 quick proposals a while ago, not many interesting jobs lately.

The main focus of my day was a call with a prospect on Upwork.
It was for a mid-size project.

For who doesn't know, having calls is one the things that scares me the most.
My anxiety rises absurdly.

When the client was up I couldn't jump on the call right away (for my anxiety) so I put it off.
Eventually we had this very quick call (really felt like a job interview).
Dunno, the convo was good but didn't feel like i nailed it.
Probably the client was looking for someone a bit different. Or perhaps was my english?
He closed the call quickly at a certain point just asking to send a full proposal.

Nonetheless, I did it, I felt better after all, and this is what matters.

Here a special thanks goes to @Speed112 , thanks for setting me up lol and share your advices and experiences on the matter. I truly appreciated it.

Let's close this daily update with a good news.
Finished one of the Upwork projects: the client keeps saying he's mind-blown by the results (all his team is); he also started to ask about my availability for another project.

Tomorrow I have to focus 100% on my other Upwork project which I didn't start yet.
I'll try to finish it tomorrow itself.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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DAY #11
I forgot to mention my country's government issued a covid help benefit for small businesses so i got €1k from them.
Not really earned but now I "just" have to earn €9k.

With all the projects got from Upwork till the begin of this journey, I'm at €330 (yeah... nuts).

I can say €8670 left.


---

One Upwork project completed, got 5 stars review and a great feedback.
Client offered me another job, but the price was crazy low.
I got back asking a bit more (anyway we're talking about under minimum wage prices).
Didn't get reply. I move on and if he comes back agreeing then cool.

Almost done with the other project.
I'll finish tomorrow and deliver (ahead of deadline).
Updated the client on the status and asked permission to take care of other issues i found, without thinking about charging.
He agreed and actually offered $100 more for the task. Cool.

Tomorrow i'm 100% on this ^

6 new proposals sent.
0 interview.
0 new job landed.

---


Math, forecasting and strategic assessment


I made some math and I would never reach my goal on Upwork, neither with the best (but somewhat realistic) scenario ever (which is not gonna happen).

I have around 11 weeks left.
Let's say I can put 40 hrs/week in it.
A past project where i earned almost 1k took me 40 hrs, so let's keep 1k/40hrs as standard.

$1000 in revenue on Upwork turns into €472 in profit *gif with someone crying here*

Even being fully booked all the 11 weeks.... (11*472)+1330 = €6522
Too far. Perhaps Upwork is not the right direction.

Let's make other calcs...
Getting job outside the platform means no 20% fee and no need to charge in $.
So with a €1000 as baseline, my profit would be around €750.

It means I need to sell 12 €1000 websites to reach my goal.
I can handle the workload (I imagine these to be biz websites, no ecom or similar).


I don't have a decision yet, just throwing thoughts on the table... but it feels like what i avoided the most cannot be avoided anymore (old gold cold outreaching).
Also the "reddit ads" project can bring leads for this, i'll try that first.

Better sleep on it.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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DAY #12
Short daily update.

Completed all Upwork projects, collected all the money and got the reviews.


I'm done with Upwork.
It just doesn't make sense spent 5 days of work for €300.
I better focus on lead gen.

I'll keep having a look without much effort though, and apply if it sounds like a €1k in profit job.

---

I've started to engage with some people on Reddit, got a chat with a guy and we were discussing the possibility to partner up (him on sales, me on dev).

I'll try post my services in the job-related subreddits, who knows.

Tomorrow I'll focus on the "niche web design project" until completion.
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Day #13
Unproductive day.
I screwed up my schedule, went to bed super late and woke up at 11am.

Spent hours just reading threads here and action faking trying to solve problems that are not in front of me.

Eventually I force myself to do something and went ahead with the "webdesign niche" project, worked at it a couple of hours.

I start to doubt about it, but gotta keep going till the end and see what really happens.

Deadline for the landing page ready to go live: Saturday evening.
Ads need to start running on Sunday.

---

A Upwork's client from last week hit me back offering me another project: developing a website for $200.
I passed. I'm done with Upwork, as i mentioned yesterday.


---

Reading the forum is inspiring but it makes me feel like shit.
Sometimes it feels like everyone gets massive success and I'm not even able to make the minimum wage.

I've been living with my family for almost a year now, cause I'm not making enough money to be independent.
One of my parents lost the job so from next month things will get worst.
We've never been a rich family, I mean, we can afford eating pizza once a week, that sort of stuff, so i guess no more pizza for a while.
I know it's not my responsibility helping them but at least i can make enough to move the f*ck out of here and stop being a weight.

I'm sure there's something completely wrong I'm doing, perhaps is the mindset, or the attitude, i have to figure it out.


#just-tired-today
 

UnderdogStrategy

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DAY #14 (TL;DR: very long self-analysis)
Dark night continues.
Did nothing.

---


Random "sales talk"
Had a talk with a guy who hit me up on Reddit, because he saw a thread I opened about how to get started with Google Ads.
Basically he wants someone n00b (?) to help him out growing a mail list/community, to then get funds for his project.

We move on discord, after few messages I just say I'm not interested.
He insists and I end up having a look at his 2 websites...
They're shit and I tell him that they are shit.
We have a serious talk, I dig into his current situations, goals, etc...

In the end I offer my help to make a serious website, but not for the ads stuff, because his plan doesn't make sense and it will be a waste of money (not by my hand).

Asked for his budget, but he skipped the question.

All this story makes me realize an important thing... detachment.
Every time i have an opportunity, I daydream. Literally.
I've been burnt so many times due to this in the past months...
In this convo i was detached, didn't give a sh*t.
Did i make a sale? No. But I didn't waste hours/days stressing myself out for anxiety.
I didn't even realize it was a sales talk until a while in it.
I just asked questions to understand more and see where i could help.


---

Self Analysis (long)

:: My past is controlling my present
I noticed this.
I let singular events happened in the past expand and become a generalized prediction of what will happen again in the future.
This "ghosts" scares me so much that I don't act.


Story #1
To do an example... few months ago i used to start cold emailing lots of people.
Sure, perhaps the first attempt wasn't the best. Not my message, not my mindset, not the value i was providing (if any). But I started.
Then, i received a couple of replies.

Someone told me I was ridiculous and I had no chance to succeed in business.
Another one saying he didn't give a shit about my bullshits and i should get a real life.

I let those random strangers words getting under my skin and i didn't send a cold email since then.
Every time i think about doing it again, i hear those messages in my head...


Story #2
3 years ago I tried to get a job in sales.
The job was literally cold calling people (for a gym).
I lasted 4 hours, after that time I just stand up and said i was done. Quit. (yes, it was day 1)
I still remember a couple of people over the phone treating me like shit.
I've always had trouble with phone and calls (no idea why), and in that experience my worst nightmare about calls became reality.
So yeah, as story #1, just the idea of cold calling activates a lot of stuff inside.


Story #3
Not really a story.. my 8-5 jobs had been extremely traumatic experiences and i actually had PTSD and other issues in the past.
The reason was, obviously, sociopathic/narcissistic/toxic people... i associated business owners with the one I used to have and generally people in companies with the people i used to have as colleagues..
So, again, my feelings about connecting with those people are troublesome.


Diving deeper
When someone treat me like shit, my anger becomes unstoppable.
I can't contain it. I need to act it out. In dangerous ways.
Obviously, due to social norms or due to distance (for phones/email), this cannot be done.
What happens is that the rage, like a bomb, implodes inside me instead of outside, causing a lot of issues physically and mentally (depressive states is one of the proved effect).

So I believe my system wants to protect me from these inner implosions avoiding what it's labelled as trigger.

I need to learn how to reframe those situations and how to let it go.

Another point is certain words kind of mirror what i probably truly believe myself inside.
That's why it hurts.
It backs up limiting beliefs.

If you don't believe you can make it... and someone tells it.... it hurts and you let it go under your skin, because it's already down there.

If you believe you can make it... and someone tells you you cannot... you might ignore, have a laugh, think it's a jealous person. Then move on.

---

The world was so bad with me, wasn't it?
Yeah, well, no.

I wasn't skilled.

This is the insight of the day. I - just - wasn't - skilled.
Every personal relationships I screwed up, every time someone treated me like shit... every time things don't work out... it's easy to blame the outside.

And it's easy to blame myself.

But I just didn't have the skillset to manage that situation and to get through it in a healthy way.

Nor I had the awareness to realize this and pick the skill to learn, improve and grow.
And this is why the same shit happened over and over again.

What I can do today is learning the skills i miss so that I would be able to face similar challenges in the future.

Back to main point, which is putting myself into outreaching, sales, engage with people, here's a braindump of stuff I might need to learn or do

  • Learn how to deal with assholes without losing a sec feeling bad
  • Prepare my arguments: know what to say in front of objections, how to explain clearly what I do and how I do, explain the value I can offer... basically pitching
  • Improve my discovering skills, understand people real problems, needs
  • Set up the "mindset", which can be a list of short sentences/quotes and stick to it, thinking about it, let it sink and influence actions and attitudes
  • Get more used to talk to people and carry conversations
Is transparency a good thing?
I don't think so.
But I'll keep being transparent regardless.
It wasn't supposed to became a self-therapy diary but if this is the problem I have to overcome now... it's okay.
 

Speed112

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Bucharest, Romania
Is transparency a good thing?
I don't think so.

Why not?

I think this was very insightful and it looks like you're making a lot of great progress even in the days when you're not closing new clients or working on a practical problem you get paid for.

In this convo i was detached, didn't give a sh*t.
Did i make a sale? No. But I didn't waste hours/days stressing myself out for anxiety.

This is the key. Don't sweat it. Who cares? They're just people. Most of them are retards anyway. Some are spiteful, sad, miserable individuals who are eager to get a chance to berate someone for a random reason. Laugh at their suffering and move on, or try to help them anyway.

I still remember a couple of people over the phone treating me like shit.

I had a few calls like that when I was selling stocks when a guy immediately started yelling at me once he realized what I was pitching. He had been burned in the past and didn't follow proper trade principles or and lost... $500.

Instead of feeling bad about it, because I had done nothing wrong, I was trying to help him, so I followed through and genuinely tried to figure out his issue and try to help him. I calmed him down, we discussed his reaction, he realized he was being an a**hole, talked some more, and then ended on good terms.

It didn't lead to anything, but it prevented me from accumulating bad feelings of rejection and ruining my performance for the rest of the day, so it was a good use of time, and I felt like I helped that guy from his anger issues.

I don't know if full detachment and not caring, or being able to dial up and down the amount of attachment is better, but whatever it is I'm sure you're moving in the right direction.

People are people. You're just communicating, trying to discover and engage in win/win opportunities. If they don't appreciate that, it's their loss. They're not entitled to working with you and neither are you to working with them, so if you can't reach an agreement that's life. Next. The more time you spend with the ungratefuls is time not spent with those who appreciate what you do and can help you create the world you want around you.

What happens is that the rage, like a bomb, implodes inside me instead of outside, causing a lot of issues physically and mentally

Sounds like you need to learn to defuse the bomb before it affects you or those around you.

Keep truckin'
 

UnderdogStrategy

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Feb 6, 2021
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DAY #17
Note: super sleepy but I want to write it anyway, it would probably be in a very broken english

Did nothing in the past days, this depressive period is continuing.

Yesterday I took some time off and I met my friends after 3-4 months we didn't see each other.
I got a good lesson.

I've been so obsessed by this business journey, and yet didn't have any success in it, that i forget to press the "pause" button and just enjoy the present and the moments I have during my days.

---


"I got a call! Unwanted one.."

Got a call from a "ex" friend of mine.
He's a ghostwriter/book writer, and was actually the first person I tried to build a website for when I started my web design journey.
I offered him an entire website + seo for free and he was enthusiastic.
After I completed 80% of the project, he changed his mind (he's a very self-sabotaging person) and he just didn't want it anymore.
Useless to say I insulted him badly and closed the relationship.

He called me today after 6 months saying he has a client who needs a website.
Obviously the scope was ridiculous.
A small eCommerce for €100/200.

I said I couldn't help, he insisted so I stated my boundaries.
Minimum €500 (not for the eCom but for a static one) and all money upfront.
I would start to think about the project when I see the money in my bank account.
Of course he said €500 was impossible.
I don't think something it's gonna come out of that, and I don't care, but I left the door open.

---


Important insights (Self Analysis)
I'll try to keep it short and related to the business challenge.

Notice: everything is related to my specific personality, so it might not be same for others.

"Earning 10k", or 100k, or 1 million, is a goal that doesn't make any sense.
It's a dangerous one if you are a daydreamer and a self-judgmental person.

1. It's not action oriented; there are tons of way to earn 10k and what is happening here is I'm trying several things, going nowhere. It leaves too many options. It leaves room for action faking.
2. Everyday I'm not proceeding toward the goal or I do, but it's not enough (see my €300 earned last week), i just feel shit and a failure.

Before getting to the proper improvement mindset, I want to dive deeper into the reason behind the big goals.
Why aiming high? I don't mean the rational reasons of pursuing wealth, we all know that.
I refer to my own internal reasons, the source of a structure that set me up to constant sufferance.

Since i was very little i grew up with an unreasonable amount of pressure and high expectations, hence I developed a very strong and unrealistic self-ideal.

That "you" in your mind you want to be.
My self-ideal (aka standards) is... too much.
I always want to be the best in everything. Number one. The top in every hierarchy.
This put on me a crazy amount of pressure and it doesn't matter what I do, how i do it, it's never enough.

Why do I need to be the best?
There's not reason.. there's no sense.
I already have a girlfriend who loves me deeply for what I am now, today, the real me, not the perfect one I have in my mind.
I have friends that appreciate me for what I am.
I have a family that loves me, doesn't matter how difficult I used to be in the past.
So why do I need more? I'm the only one who sees this "perfect" me and he just makes me suffer.

I don't need more... it's just a childish energy that took shape long time ago and, still, it influences my life.
It was useful.
And I'm thankful to it.
Because in its own way, that force always pushed me to become better. Just not in a healthy & sustainable way.

The way to "heal" myself is a way of humbleness & self-acceptance.

I don't need to be the best.
I don't need to be billionaire, powerful, a superhero, batman.
It's time to let it go...
Also, the way i've been judging myself so hardly, i've been doing with others.

With people closed to me.
I thought horrible things about them, because I was comparing them to my own unrealistic ideal standards.

I'm okay the way I am.
My journey is my own journey.
Comparing with others or ideal images doesn't make sense.
Comparing myself to who I was yesterday it does. (Jordan Peterson's rule)

I might never be able to get the push up world record (random example).
But I can do my own journey with push up and end up cranking 100 in a row.
And it won't matter if it's gonna take 3 years and for someone else just 6 months.

Incremental Improvements (again JBP).
Aim at what is next.
What you aim at shapes your reality.

Pursue a constant, daily improvement instead of "earn 100k". Money are a consequence.
Face what is real, what is in front of you now.
And go from there.
 

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UnderdogStrategy

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
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Feb 6, 2021
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Day #18

No more self-analysis, back to action.

Upwork
I randomly check it out, if there's some job that fits my skillset and it's 1k+ I would apply.
Sent 1 proposal effortlessly, something like "hi, i specialize in what you need, hit me up" and I got the interview in spite of the other 20 to 50 people who applied lol
Tomorrow I'll scope it out.

Niche web design + Reddit Ads
After a bit of self-negotiation I got myself down to finish this project.
Completed the landing page, though not as well done as I planned, and set up the Reddit Ads.
Just waiting Reddit to approve it.
Budget is $80.
I don't have much expectations, let's see.

A clear and humble direction
I won't spend anymore resources in "experiments".
I will stick to do the most reasonable thing, start locally.

I used to have my own website but, due to following the wrong SEO advice, I got penalized.
I didn't even like the name I gave myself so I'll just restart again.

I would use my own name and face, can't recall a single successful person here or in other places who's known as nickname + random avatar.

This business is based on human relationship and name+face matters.

I'll focus on SEO only in my area (start small)
I'll start to create valuable content.
I'll try to get on Linkedin, engage with people and share my content.
Obviously, also, cold outreach.

This means starting small, get something and only then, expand.

The high-level priority now is got my independence back.
Being able to earn the minimum necessary to sustain myself on my own, with my own business.
That would already mean something, a massive improvement compared with where I used to be in the past, and where I am now.
Starting small.

In practical terms, it would require 3-4 website sold at €500, or 2 at €1k, monthly speaking.

"Damn, why didn't I think about this before?"
You know... i've started learning a bit of web development when I was 13yo.
It didn't last long time, like anything else in my life.
Fun fact, I sold a website from cold outreach back then. For real.
I still remember it.
I replied to some announce in a listing website (or i created one, don't recall this detail) and ended up making a website from a physical therapist somewhere in my country.
I didn't really know what I was doing, nor i had real skills, in fact was just a awful BLOGSPOT site lol
Earned €130 from that project, it's a good memory.

What's the point?
The point is the place where I got the deal, so many years ago.. listing websites.
Americans have Craiglist, here's not used but there other similar sites.

Just had a tour around there and here what I discovered:
- a guy who was offering web design services, with his announce posted 3 hours before i checked it out, already had 1k+ visitors (you can see the people who saw the ad)
- you can buy the top position for 1 week for €10. A guy who's currently in top position with the paid option has almost 15k views to his announce

It's huge visibility for little money.
Definitely going to use it.

Another thing I've noticed: lots of people without a job are around there trying to get something, as VA and similar.
I would reach them out and inform about my referral program.
This might help me workaround my poor network using other people's network (paying of course, win-win-win).


Start small, self-negotiation, fix the past
Self-negotiation is extremely important to overcome challenging tasks (anxiety) and to keep myself disciplined.

Along with "start small" I reduced my sessions' length to 40' instead of an hour.
I feel it's much less draining and more manageable.

Bought the Self Authoring program from Jordan Peterson and started it.
It's a good time to go through it and do a serious work on my past.

Tomorrow I'll focus on set everything up and ready to be shared with people (site, social profiles, etc...).
 

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