When you decide to do something big, it has a serious impact on your life. It changes who you are, and the lessons you learn from such a huge experience become invaluable to you.
When I started blogging all of those years ago, I had no idea what I truly had in store for me. I have changed so much as a person, and I have no doubt that I would not be the person I am today if I had never began this journey.
As I’ve taken time to reflect on this year, I’ve realized that there is a lot blogging has taught me about life – very important lessons that are universal to all of us as human beings.
While you read through this list, I want you to really think about the lessons I share with you. Think about how they’ve arose in your lifetime. Tie them to your own unique experiences. We are all different individuals, and some of these will pop out to you more than others. Some will become more apparent in the future.
Understand the significance of these 7 truths, and you will find much more success in both your professional and your personal life.
1. You Must Operate In Reality, Or You Will Fail
Look around, and you’ll find many of the people you know and love so much do not operate in reality. Instead, they base their decisions based on their emotions, beliefs, or what they feel reality should be.
There is no bigger smack in the face than wanting something so badly, working hard to make it happen, and then having to confront reality head on. Think back to your early days as a blogger. Chances are, things didn’t go exactly the way you wanted them to right away.
I know this was certainly the case for me. My first blog that I tried to monetize was a general technology blog. It had no refined niche, and attempted to cover one of the world’s largest markets. Needless to say, the blog failed miserably, but it served as a great learning experience.
Business has no emotions. The free market doesn’t care how you feel about something. It doesn’t matter how much you love pink fluffy camels or something silly like that, if the demand isn’t there, you are never going to make any money building a blog around that.
This is likely extremely apparent in your personal life as well, especially from people who complain a lot without making any attempt to solve their problems. Complaining does not solve a problem, action does. No luck in the dating world? Hit the gym. Not making enough money? Build your skillset, tackle a new project and work harder.
Embrace reality and you’ll find your problems suddenly start getting solved a lot quicker, leaving you happier and more successful as a result.
2. Make Yourself Known
The powers of making yourself known are practically limitless.
In business, it’s obvious – when more people know you, you make more money. And even if one product or idea flops, if you are well known for something, people will continue to follow you around and support you wherever you go.
Throw as much as you can into promotion, and I promise your level of success will skyrocket. This is one of the greatest reinvestments you can make back into your business and growing your personal brand. On top of the money promotion makes you directly, there are many benefits to having people thinking about you. I can’t tell you how many people have chosen to buy one of my products rather than a competitor’s simply because they had ‘seen me around.’
When people see you doing something, when they know you for something, that imprints you in their mind, something that yields you dividends far into the future.
This is true in your personal life as well. Make it a habit of networking wherever you go. You never know who you’ll meet that will end up impacting your life sometime later down the line, or what opportunities will come your way when people know who you are and what you stand for.
3. You Get What You Give
You know the old saying – give lots of value, and you will receive a lot in return. Treat others like you want to be treated. What goes around comes around.
It’s a cliché, but it’s true. And in the blogging world, it proves itself true over, and over, and over again.
If you want people to provide value for you in some way, be it with money, favors, respect, etc, you must first provide some sort of value to them. In blogging, this is usually by delivering high quality free content that actually benefits the reader in some way. Networking and doing favors for other bloggers is another great one.
Make it a habit of going out of the way to provide value to people in your everyday life in some way. This will invoke what’s known as the reciprocity principle, a psychological phenomenon that compels you to repay a debt to somebody.
Now I’m not saying you should do nice things just so people will do nice things for you, but let’s be real here. The more you do for other people, the more other people will do for you. It’s a win-win.
4. Opportunity Must Be Created
People who believe that opportunity will magically show up one day and take them to their dreams are not operating in reality. The truth is, if you want something, you can not wait for it to come to you. Do that, and you’ll be waiting forever.
Instead, opportunity must be created. You must take action and do whatever it takes to achieve whatever it is you want to achieve.
I started blogging for money at the age of 14. I had stumbled upon a video on the topic and saw the potential. I was too young to get a traditional job and I needed money. So what did I do?
I created the opportunity by sacrificing a monthly payment for a video game I was addicted to at the time, and instead used that money to pay for web hosting.
That decision changed my life.
Successful people do not wait around for the perfect moment to arise. They find something they want, and they develop a plan to get there. Then, they do whatever it takes to make it happen.
Do whatever it takes. Create opportunity. Take charge and take action. You can do this.
5. Success Doesn’t Create Happiness On Its Own
In the eyes of society, I was such a loser before I had started blogging for business purposes.
Not only was I doing poorly in school, but I was overweight, nerdy, and thought I’d be too lazy to ever get a job.
It was only a few years ago where I shifted from somebody that was laughed at to somebody to look up to in the eyes of my peers. In their mind, I had become a ‘success.’ Whatever that means.
Even I had started feeling fairly successful with the achievements I had gathered, but of course, I always continue to look up. Anyway, as I have gathered success in certain areas of my life, I have discovered that while ‘success’ can make you feel good, it on its own does not inherently bring happiness.
Sure, success is nice, and it can certainly make it easier to be happy, but there needs to be more. I am happier than I was all those years ago, but it is because I’ve learned how to create real happiness within myself, not because I fit some preconceived image of ‘success.’
6. Having A Purpose Can Drive You Unlike Anything Else
What motivates you?
I know it’s not noble, but I have to tell the truth – when I was first starting out, I just wanted money. I grew up in a very poor family. While I never considered myself to be living in poverty, I grew up not knowing if we’d have warm water that day, and seeing my breath at night was not uncommon because we often had no heat.
The problem with chasing money is one of two things. Either you don’t do well right away and you give up because you aren’t feeling rewarded for your work, or you succeed in achieving your goal and make more than enough money than you desire. But then what?
You lose the will to keep working, because more money no longer feels rewarding as it did earlier on in your blogging career.
Because you’re here reading an article about life lessons, I think it’s fair to assume you’re a bigger thinker than most people. That’s why I know you’ll take it to heart when I tell you that you need a bigger purpose.
Having a deep, meaningful purpose will drive you to unbelievable levels.
I am fortunate enough to be in a position most people are not in. I feel it is my duty to make the most out of the situation I’m in and help as many people as possible. I have an obligation to everybody in my life – my parents, my future children, and humanity as a whole, to become successful and improve as many lives as I possibly can.
Do I still want to make money? Absolutely – I am running a business after all. However, it’s no longer the main driving factor behind my work. My purpose is much bigger than that, and it’s what keeps me going day in, and day out.
What’s your purpose?
7. Anything Can Happen
If there’s anything I’ve learned throughout this journey, it’s that there is so much I do not and can not possibly know.
Really, anything can happen. Anything can happen. You have no idea what’s in store for today, tomorrow, next year, and so on. Something could happen today that could completely change your life, just as discovering the power of blogging did for me all those years ago.
If you would have told me 10 years ago that I would own several successful businesses, reach a million people, and never end up working a regular job, I would have thought you were insane. Nobody could have ever of possibly predicted this.
I’m willing to bet you that most successful bloggers feel the same way. When they were starting out, they had no idea what it would turn into.
Always remember when you are feeling down that anything can happen at any time. Your life today will not be the same as it will be 10 years from now. This sort of uncertainty can seem scary, but at the same time it is also very liberating because it puts you in control.
Life will throw you surprises. Things will go off track from time to time. Think back to your purpose, and use it to guide you.
The fact of the matter is, when you create opportunities and take action in large enough quantities, your life will inevitably change in ways you can not even fathom.
I know with absolute certainty there are more life lessons blogging teaches us than those mentioned here, and like anything in life, we will continue to learn and discover more as life goes on.
I would like you to really think back, and share any lessons you have discovered yourself. The knowledge you share with us has the capability to completely change our way of thinking. Really, you never know how big of an impact your words will have on someone, so do not hesitate to share.
Looking forward to hearing from you,
So true what you write! I have made MANY mistakes to get to where I am today, and I’m nowhere near where I want to be yet…. but I’m much further on than I was when I started, and I’m not quitting.
My first blog was completely DIRE, TRIPE, RUBBISH!! I was pleased to be rid of it, but it served the purpose of showing me what NOT to do, and teaching me WordPress. Subsequent blogs also came and went with varying degrees of success and I’m still ditching old sites that didn’t do brilliantly, to clear the decks for my current site.
As for my “why” – surprisingly enough it’s not that I’m desperate for the money. It will fund extras, but I could get along OK without them. Two big reasons:
1) Something to get out of bed for each day (other than being a “lady who lunches” LOL)
2) To prove the “doubters” in my family wrong
Let’s show ’em all in 2016 🙂
Joy Healey recently posted…Internet Marketing Goals For 2016
Hey Joy that’s awesome! When we’re so focused on where we’re going it’s sometimes hard to acknowledge how far we’ve already come, but success tends to compound and I have no doubt you’ll continue to grow drastically in the future as long as you keep persisting..
Yep, my first blog was terrible also. It amazes me how many people blame everyone else for their failure. The fact of the matter is that the blog did not adhere to basic business principals. It was only my fault that it failed. Being able to take responsibility for that was so important because it allowed me to recognize that I could make changes and come back stronger.
Love those reasons. No better way to get revenge on somebody who doubted or criticized you than to become extremely successful, am I right?
Here’s to making 2016 great!
James McAllister recently posted…2016: Goals, Plans, And Outlook