Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Tim Ferriss Clones and the BS of Capitalism

Photo Credit: Anne Helmond

Photo Credit: Anne Helmond

Last night I watched a movie called Nightcrawler. It was such a good movie I actually watched it twice in a row. I’m not going to spoil anything, but Jake Gyllenhaal plays a character that finds success with three tactics.

  1. Rigorous research and planning
  2. Persistence
  3. Taking calculated risks

Now, feel free to formulate your own opinions of his (brilliant) character, but I admire a few of his qualities, even if they were questionable. Sorry to tip toe around that one, but this movie is so easy to spoil. Go see it. Right now.

That movie also made me realize there are a ton of people I see like this online. If you’re a blogger and have ever searched for tips on how to grow your audience, you’re sure to have come across this type. Or maybe you just want to make money online. You know this guy.

The Tim Ferriss clone.

These are a bunch of people with (seemingly) heaps of knowledge on how to earn money, drive traffic, or whatever else you want. They give you a bit of (seemingly) useful knowledge to show you they’re smart, but it’s never enough for you to gain some real insight. Not for free anyway. It’s odd. It’s almost like paying to learn how you were tricked to pay for information so you can do the same to others.

Capitalism is a mother f**ker.

Now mind you, this isn’t ALWAYS the tactic, but as someone who is searching for a means of earning money independently, I see a ton of these guys around. They’re sharks patiently swimming in the water, waiting for SEO to bring you within striking range. These guys all have strong, direct speech and come off a the guy who is care free and wants to share his secrets.

Remember Lost? That show was selling secrets too. We all know how that one ended.

I bought the 4 Hour Workweek a while ago and it’s insane to see how many people have adopted this methodology and are trying make knowledge a commodity. Truth be told, I’m writing this out of frustration because I’m a struggling blogger whose money is going toward starting a new life with my fiancé. I can’t bother with your class, even if it’s worth more than the $199 you’re pitching.

Great. Now we have knowledge poverty. If you read my blog (hopefully you do), you know I’m anti-establishment. I see a system taking shape right before our eyes. I’ll break it down like this:

  1. Everything starts with statistics and research. This separates success from failure. Do you think successful poker players just win by luck? That’d be silly. They know statistics. It gives them an edge in staying ahead of competition. People who take this seriously are (theoretically) always observing data. Even data gathered from the people paying to get their information.
  2. Most people suck at gathering valid statistics. I certainly do. A lot of people have ideas, but knowing key statistics makes you a valuable resource because most people just want to be told how they can win the game. But you can never “win” the game, because the game never ends. You can only increase your odds of not being a loser.
  3. Selling knowledge means you are selling people the opportunity to increase their odds. But the people doing the selling will never sell everything. They’ll sell enough and become experts in their fields because data is always changing and they are likely better at gathering stats that will keep them successful. There will always be an audience that just wants to know and some of them become repeat customers. Knowledge is power after all.

I kid you not, Nightcrawler made me think about this in an entirely different way. Now I may be wrong here, but it seems to me anyone can achieve the same if you’re smart enough. But I’m not smart enough and this market of selling knowledge is quickly becoming flooded anyway. Especially for kinda-sorta vague specialties like marketing experts.

My problem is if you never learn how to truly gather and analyze stats, you’ll never stay ahead of the curve. This holds true for EVERYTHING in business. Stats are huge. Stats are just as important to your blog growth as it is to corporations starting a new line of products. But for us common folk, we either have to learn it, pay/partner with someone who can gather stats for you. You can get services, but you still need context for numbers. How does this relate to your business? How does it relate to emerging markets? You can do so much, which is why I’m stayed up all night studying web analytics and stat interpretation. It’s amazing how incorrectly I’ve been looking at this whole thing. Now I get why data is so important and why everyone and their advertising mama wants access to it. They want that advantage. This totally relates to capitalism as a whole.

Capitalism thrives on advantages and these things run deep. Wealth, race, gender, sexuality, and nationality all have different advantages and disadvantages depending on where you fall. The internet isn’t perfect, but it definitely helps to negate some of those categories as factors. I mean, the thought of a random Jamaican from Paterson, NJ becoming a freelance writer in the 1960’s is ridiculous.

But stats and numbers are powerful. We have the world we have today partially because we have companies that study us and market toward the things to which we gravitate. That’s why we have trends. But if you never understand the science behind why things become trends and jumping on markets before it becomes flooded. Essentially, most of us don’t understand our own data. We have pictures and posts and all manner of information out there and few of us truly realize how powerful that is. Powerful enough for me to study. I hate studying, but I want to learn this, but not for the reasons you may think.

I want to figure out a way to make stat interpretation easy. Or maybe a way to give people a way of seeing how their data is relevant to companies and the world at large. There’s got to be a cool way to spread awareness on this.

Actually, that sounds like an awesome idea. Anyone want to help me build that? I can’t pay anything, but there’s no profit in this idea anyway. I’m willing to partner with whoever actually cares about this idea. I’m not smart enough to know all the ins and outs of what I want, but I’m a quick learner when motivated and there’s a fire brewing in my belly.

In the short term, I’m totally going to put this theory to test to see if stats and data analysis is the real game changer I think it is when it comes to earning money. That’s more so I have a steady flow of income while I’m over in Thailand with my beautiful future wife. Other than that, I want to partner with some people who can make this happen. Or hell, steal this idea if you want. Just do it for the right reasons. We have enough people trying to profit from us.

Hit me up in the comments if you have ideas to contribute. I’m going to talk to a couple smart people I know and return with more thoughts later, but I urge you all to learn more about data analysis and statistics. I know I will be.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Finally Creating a Financial Plan (Part 2)

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Finally Creating a Financial Plan (Part 2)

Photo Credit: Chris Potter

Photo Credit: Chris Potter

Putting a budget together sucks. Quite a way to begin a blog post,eh?

If you read part one of this piece, you know my current goal is to save $15000 (US) by July. This is a tall order for a guy who currently works part-time. I’ll go back to fulltime work if a worthwhile gig comes along. But in the meantime, I need to focus on the minimum amount of income I need in order to achieve this goal. Last time, I came up with the following numbers:

Per Month Income Goal: $4150
Per Day Income Goal: $135.50 ($150 in Feb, $140 for 30-day months)

Remember, this takes saving and bills into account. Honestly, I feel like this could be much worse. It’s by no means simple (I’m essentially starting my life over from scratch), but I’m confident I can swing this if I keep my head in the game.

Right now I make about $47 a day in part-time work. While I’ve applied this over the course of seven days, I’m actually only working about 20 hours a week. Also, I tend to make more because I log out late some days, but I don’t want to rely on that. I need to know what I’m guaranteed. I don’t know what works for you, but if some amount of money isn’t a sure thing (or a close approximation), I see no good reason to track it. It’s simply a bonus.

Like when you randomly find a 20 dollar bill in your coat pocket.

So I’m a bit more of 1/3 of the way there (depending on the month).

Awesome.

Sort of.

This puts me in a bit of a quandary. Either I need to get that fulltime job I’ve been avoiding or I need to simply earn more money. Truth be told, I became a bit spoiled over the last few months as time is a much better motivation for me than money. Earning more is awesome, but if I go that route, I want to ensure it’s an ideal situation for me. I’m not trying to be stressed out of my mind all day then take my work home so I can continue that feeling all night.

Been there, done that.

So I need to make up the rest of it with freelance work unless anything changes. This is where things get tricky.

I make my side moola freelance writing or editing. Recently I landed a somewhat steady editing gig, but I’m not getting any more than $55 a week from them. In this case, steady definitely doesn’t mean a lot of hours.Either way, let’s just reduce this to $30 a week because that $55 isn’t guaranteed. Per day, that’s about $4.29. Not much but it gets me over $50 a day.

Side note: I realize this is going to be a ballgame with a ton of singles and doubles. So be it. I should have been better at this months ago, but life (or in my case, love) became a higher priority than making money.

Yes, it’s actually true.

But with my fiancé stuck in Sweden until we have that K1 visa, I don’t mind putting forth some extra effort to reach this goal.

Anyway, if we’re talking about February, I need to make about $98 more per day to hit my goal. Actually, let’s just go with $150 per day as a nice, round goal. I realize this is totally stream of conscious and I should probably just update what I wrote before, but I’m lazy as all sin right now. Deal with it.

Most content writing gigs offer crap for pay and, quite frankly, are not worth my time. Some of them are decent if I need money in a pinch, but most of them demand a lot of effort with marginal returns. Next week I’ll dive into freelance writing more and what I’m doing to increase my odds of landing better paying gigs. But for now, let’s finish up the rest of this budget.

While income is a significant part of tracking finances, I would argue spending is far more crucial. That’s because any money that is earned will ALWAYS help. Spending, on the other hand, hinders monetary growth unless its an investment in something else that will generate revenue.

Luckily, getting laid off curtailed my loosey-goosey spending habits big time. All I need is food, honestly. I’m basically in stasis until my fiancé and I are back together. It sounds horrible, but I’m fine with limiting my outings, only spending when I end up exceeding my daily goal consistently. One or two days aren’t a green light to loosen up those purse strings.

January will end up being a proof of concept month. I will be tracking ALL of my spending. This way I’ll have a concrete idea of where money is going and where I can cut corners sans any negative repercussions. Here’s what I can estimate at the very least:

  • $25 a week on groceries (very doable living alone and being a vegetarian)
  • $5 a week on public transportation (I’m still debating selling my car. Right now it’s not on the road so I don’t have to pay for insurance)
  • $50 every two weeks miscellaneous spending

This is a strict budget. As you can see, I’m keeping it pretty minimal as I’m not factoring in much. This is because I don’t need much. This savings goal is more important than stuff I want to buy so I may as well act like it.

Okay, folks; that’s it for now. Join me next week when I start talking about things you can do to help snag more writing gigs (this should be appropriate for other types of freelance work too). I hope your journey is as exciting as mine and, as always, hit me up in the comments if you have any tip or feedback of your own!

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Finally Creating a Financial Plan (Part 1)

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Finally Creating a Financial Plan (Part 1)

Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver

Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver

I spent a lot of days hiding out and carb-loading ever since my girlfriend’s visa expired. It’s been a week now so I figured it’s time to emerge from my one-man pity party and start working toward my and my fiance’s dream. I’ll talk a little bit about that dream next, but the weekly tracking of making this happen will be in a series I’m starting called The Dream Chaser Project (every Wednesday at 11am).

So without further ado…

The Mission: Save $15K by July
Problems: School loans, various bills
Temporary Problems: Current rent,

There have been times in my life when I started something without a goal in mind. For example, I could just say I want to start saving money, but I’m not actually working toward anything. Here, I’ve set a goal, albeit a challenging one given I’m currently only working part-time

Whatever. I’m up for the challenge.

First things first, I’m moving in with family starting in February. That means I won’t have to worry about regular rent after January. Outside of that, my biggest expense is my school loans. So let’s break this down a bit. If I were to start on my goal in February, this is where I stand:

Goal: $15000
Loans and Other Bills (Per Month): $1500
Other Monthly Expenses: $150

Alright, so let’s figure out how much I need to earn per day and month:

Per Month Income Goal: $4150 (Let’s just round that up to $4200)
Per Day Income Goal: $135.50 ($150 in Feb, $140 for 30-day months)

I can totally do this with a regular full-time job, but I’m only going that route if I have to. Otherwise, I’m shooting for this with part-time, freelance, or remote work. Additionally, my fiance and I want to either travel while working or simply live outside of the US for a while. Because of this, I can also sell a bunch of belongings because, you know, stuff just weighs people down. I’m trying to keep it lightweight.

Lastly, there are two general rules I’m going to follow (more will be added as I follow this):

  1. I will not adjust my daily/monthly goals regardless if I exceed them or if I come up short. I need this data so I can adjust how I move forward in the future.
  2. ALL spending will be tracked. My other monthly expenses are just an estimate. I have no clue what they will be once I move home. I know that I’ll be going out much less only because my focus is to save.

So this is just the beginning. I’ll be giving more details as to my plan and different suggestions from various sources. I know this is “Lessons from a New Self-Earner,” so here’s the lesson I learned:

I’ve made it through life never planning anything when it comes to money. Some may see that as bad to admit, but it is what it is. I’m not here for anyone’s approval. Now, however, I know the life I want. Saving this money is a priority, but to be honest, this is a study on how I can earn money remotely with as little stress as possible. I have no idea if I’ll be able to do this without some sacrifices, but I’m more than down to try.

Let the games begin.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Admitting When You Need a Helping Hand

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Admitting When You Need a Helping Hand

marsellus wallace

Man oh man, my life is in a big transitional phase, folks. My girlfriend and I did a lot of talking last week and we decided a couple things:

  1. We’re applying for a fiance visa so we can get married next year.
  2. We’re moving the eff out of the US as soon as possible.

Not that I dislike America, but if we can have a life more suitable for us in another country, why not?

The thing with a fiance visa is it can take five to eight months for approval.

Ugh.

Then my girlfriend (and parents) made an excellent point. If our ultimate plan is to move elsewhere and start a life together, why are we going to spend money on separate apartments while we wait up to eight months (if all goes well) for a piece of paper that says we can get married. Wouldn’t it be smarter to save money in the meantime? I’m taking the opportunity to do just that.

In February, I’m going to do something I thought I’d never do in a million years (or however long I’ll be alive): I’m moving back in with my parents.

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

As I’ve said before, being a self-earner can be rough. It also didn’t help that I slacked off SIGNIFICANTLY over the last three months while my girlfriend has been here (not that I minded at all). But now it’s time to refocus.

My goal in making money is NOT to be rich. I don’t give a damn about wealth. I care more about living a worry-free life. That’s wealth to me. Is it possible? Yo no se (or ‘I don’t know’ for los Americanos out there). Here’s the thing: for the last three months, I discovered what I want the rest of my life to be. I’m not trying to kill myself and waste life by giving my time to other people/things. I know what my priorities are and they don’t involve fancy cars and designer shoes.

So I’m moving back home and I’ll be moving out as soon as my girl gets her visa. In the meantime, you better believe I’ll be saving money like a madman and using our time apart to earn as much money as possible.

I know this isn’t really a tip or suggestion, but still, it’s a lesson I had to learn. I had to learn to be alright with accepting help from my family to attain a more significant goal. I have a lot of pride and I am more than willing to struggle in order to achieve something on my own merits. That’s stupid and inefficient. My school loans are expensive as hell and paying rent and utilities doesn’t help matters. Sure, I can do it, but it doesn’t get me to my goal any more quickly. It just makes the journey unnecessarily harder.

So let’s be zen about this and take the path of least resistance. My pride is nowhere near as important as my future with my girlfriend/fiance. I don’t know if you can take anything from this post, but if you do, just know that you aren’t the only one who has that pride. Let it go. And once you get that help from someone, do your damnedest to make the most out of the opportunity.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: The Highs and Lows of Online Freelancing (Part 2)

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: The Highs and Lows of Online Freelancing (Part 2)

Photo Credit: Jeremy Lim

Photo Credit: Jeremy Lim

When I first started writing part one of this post, I really had freelance writing in mind. Very limited, right? Especially when writing isn’t where the money is. Not in comparison to other types of freelance gigs anyway. If you’re like me, you probably go for freelance writing gigs because they’re either what you love or what you do best. Maybe both. But it never hurts to have options.

According to Business Insider, these are the top ten highest paying freelance jobs on Elance and oDesk (by hourly rate):

  1. Patent Law ($112.20)
  2. Voice Acting ($72.70)
  3. Ruby Programming ($61.00)
  4. Startup Consulting ($54.00)
  5. Google Website Optimizer ($53.80)
  6. Investment Research ($53.20)
  7. Network Administration ($51.10)
  8. Statistical Analysis ($49.60)
  9. Amazon Web Services ($49.40)
  10. Legal Writing ($49.20)

Glad to see some form of writing made it into the top ten. Some other interesting ones are Database Development ($47.60), User Experience Design ($43.68), and Mobile App Testing ($32.90). I’m personally shooting for some mobile app testing and Ruby programming gigs, though I have to learn more for the latter.

So where do the writers out there stand? Craigslist, Elance, and the glut of content farm organizations would have you believe writing doesn’t pay squat. That’s true for those who are unwilling to dig deeper. That’s what we’ll explore next week. For now, explore other options! I believe everyone should follow their passion if at all possible, but if your goal is to make money, you have multiple paths as a freelancer. For example, my girlfriend’s visa expires in two weeks. I haven’t been on top of my game in terms of generating income while she’s been here so you better believe I’ll be busting my hump to earn as much as I can while I eagerly await her return.

Wish me luck.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: The Highs and Lows of Online Freelancing (Part 1)

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: The Highs and Lows of Online Freelancing (Part 1)

elance-odesk

Happy post-Thanksgiving! I hope you all enjoyed the time off. I certainly did. Let’s get down to business, shall we?

So if you haven’t already guessed with all the self-earning posts I write, I make a portion of my income from freelance work. There have been times when I’ve told people to give freelancing a shot, especially when they already have a full-time job. It’s more so they can dip their toe in the pool instead of fully diving into these treacherous waters.

Because let’s be real, freelancing, like pimpin’, ain’t easy.

The biggest problem with online freelancing is the level of competition out there. You essentially have 7 billion people who may be looking at the same gig as you. Chances are it’s not that many, but you know what I mean. Because of this, potential employers/clients have the ability to hire those with exceedingly low rates. As an American, that sucks for me. And possibly you depending on what country you’re from.

Here’s the good news: people still pay for quality, something that exists less with cheaper payment. You simply need to get over the hump of building that freelancer resume. For example, I come from an eDiscovery background, but I’m doing mostly freelance writing. When I started, I was relegated to dirt cheap gigs that pretty much weren’t worth the amount of effort I was putting in. Still, I stuck with it and have slowly fleshed out my writing resume in order to open myself up to higher paying opportunities.

Sites like Elance and oDesk are great for beginners, but just know that many folks on there are shooting for rock bottom prices. You have to sift through the noise to get some good gigs, but your best bet is to go with a dual-pronged approach: promote yourself as you hunt for gigs. Let the internet know who you are as a freelancers. Have a personal website. Use social media. Join online communities. Do what you must to raise your stock so you don’t fall prey to the surplus of bottom-feeders out there.

There is a ton to write about freelancing and I plan to do so. Tune in next week; I’ll go into more specifics and a breakdown of the highest and lowest paying types of gigs.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Multiple Revenue Streams

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Multiple Revenue Streams

money tree

During the 33 years of my life, I’ve started more ideas than I can even remember. My first business venture started when I was ten years old. My buddy Ahijah and I began drawing our Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle comics and sold them for a quarter.

Copyright infringement FTW.

Since then, I’ve had more ideas die and go nowhere than I’ve had successes. Many more. Over time, I began realizing what leads to a big part of failure: not embracing pre-existing strengths.

There was a point in my life when I was building websites as a part of a business my buddies and I started up. We got a couple clients, but I was way in over my head because I was learning as we went along. Eventually, I couldn’t fulfill requests and, unsurprisingly, the business died. This trend repeated itself numerous times until I finally broke out of it recently. Why was I trying to learn how to do things myself instead of partnering with people who could compensate for my weaker areas? Why was I even pursuing ideas that didn’t take advantage of my talents?

Every self-earner should be keenly aware of their skills and how to apply them to a money making idea. Sure, enjoyment should go into it as well, but skill is essential. Otherwise, you could easily lose momentum because you’ll eventually reach some hurdle that, for one reason or another, feels too daunting to overcome.

Embrace your strengths and exploit your skill set. If you want the challenge of learning and creating something new, good on you. I’ll worry about that later when I’m more established. For now, I’m just going to continue doing what I do best.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Embracing Your Strengths

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Embracing Your Strengths

Photo Credit: Amir Jina

Photo Credit: Amir Jina

During the 33 years of my life, I’ve started more ideas than I can even remember. My first business venture started when I was ten years old. My buddy Ahijah and I began drawing our Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle comics and sold them for a quarter.

Copyright infringement FTW.

Since then, I’ve had more ideas die and go nowhere than I’ve had successes. Many more. Over time, I began realizing what leads to a big part of failure: not embracing pre-existing strengths.

There was a point in my life when I was building websites as a part of a business my buddies and I started up. We got a couple clients, but I was way in over my head because I was learning as we went along. Eventually, I couldn’t fulfill requests and, unsurprisingly, the business died. This trend repeated itself numerous times until I finally broke out of it recently. Why was I trying to learn how to do things myself instead of partnering with people who could compensate for my weaker areas? Why was I even pursuing ideas that didn’t take advantage of my talents?

Every self-earner should be keenly aware of their skills and how to apply them to a money making idea. Sure, enjoyment should go into it as well, but skill is essential. Otherwise, you could easily lose momentum because you’ll eventually reach some hurdle that, for one reason or another, feels too daunting to overcome.

Embrace your strengths and exploit your skill set. If you want the challenge of learning and creating something new, good on you. I’ll worry about that later when I’m more established. For now, I’m just going to continue doing what I do best.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: Is Being a Self-Earner Right for You? All You Need Is One Rule

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Is Being a Self-Earner Right for You? All You Need Is One Rule

Photo Credit: Nicolas Raymond

Photo Credit: Nicolas Raymond

Good morning, potential self-earners! Let’s talk motivation, shall we?

I already spoke about the power of persistence, but that was more in reference to maintaining momentum when you already have something going. But how about folks that have yet to start on their journey? Is this right for you? If so, what’s your motivation?

Here’s the thing with being a self-earner: the road is tough. Trust me on this one. It’s not all pots of gold and sunshine as some would have you believe. It takes hard work and dedication, especially in the beginning. Therefore, there is only one rule in determining whether or not this life is right for you.

If there are other things in your life that are more important and require as much or more time than being a self-earner, don’t bother.

I’m being serious here.

I mean, you can do it, but it will be that much harder to actually make any progress. Passion has to be your motivation. Without that, this becomes a less secure version of a job. Do you really want that? If this is your passion, there’s a much greater chance of success, enjoyment, and peace of mind.

Sounds awesome, right?

Don’t buy into the hype where people try to sell you on the dream of making millions by just quitting your job and following their secret tips. Sure, some are legit, but many of them are just self-earners on their own hustle. As for you, my best advice is for you to weigh your options and if things feel right, just dive into the pool. Throw caution to the wind and chase that dream like you never have before.

Would you be okay being a half-assed parent? Probably and hopefully not. You’d do the best job possible, even if you make mistakes along the way. This is no different.

Peace out, party people.

Previously: The Art of Letting Go

Lessons from a New Self-Earner: The Art of Letting Go

Photo Credit: Keith Rowley

Photo Credit: Keith Rowley

Earlier this year, I was working on a project with my buddies Pat and Jen. Shortly thereafter, I was laid off from my job and my priorities changed. I couldn’t drop money on a developer to build an app. I had to forge my own path to some extent. As a result, Pat and I got into the first and only argument I can ever recall, and it was all due to failing to complete our idea. As we argued and debated (for hours), I began to realize we were both suffering from an inability to let go.

This post is about to journey deep into zen territory, so if you have an extreme distaste for the subject matter, it would probably be best for you to move on to another topic. For the rest of you, here is what I learned…

We’re all doing our best to make it through this life. The problem is, sometimes no matter how much much effort we put forth, our best simply isn’t enough. And that’s fine, even when it feels like it isn’t. Even when other people tell you it isn’t.

Trust me, it’s fine

As a self-earner, all one can do is try to put themselves in the best position for success and have a contingency plan for avoiding rock bottom. Other than that, even the biggest control freak has no grip on his/her fate. All you have are odds and luck (or lack thereof).

This is reality. This is also why many people opt for the safe route. You know, the one taught by society and forged by forefathers.

And foremothers.

Why isn’t that a real word?

Because sexism! Amirite?

Ehem, I digress.

If you’re going to be in the self-earning game while maintaining your general happiness and sanity, learn how to let go. Let go of high expectations. Let go of fear. Let go of negativity.Let go of ideas/projects/businesses that are not working and cannot be fixed.

Stop thinking and just be smart. As with everything in life, the stakes are only as high as we believe they are. Have some fun for Pete’s sake. If you end up clinging to all of these things, you’ll never reach your potential because you’re constantly restraining yourself.

Forget that noise.

Freeing my mind in this sense has not only helped me stay motivated while traveling this arduous road, but it has helped changed my perspective in all aspects of life. This is all a game to me – a puzzle in need of solving. It’s a challenge and I’m going to crack it or die trying. Either way, the experience is well worth it.

Maybe the same can work for you.

Peace out, party people (I so didn’t know this was the name of a Mariah Carey song until I looked up a video for this link. Please don’t judge me, although I would totally judge you if the shoe was on the other foot. Double standards FTW!).

Previously: Lessons from a New Self-Earner: Mainstream versus Niche – 7 Reasons why Less is More