Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Welcome, welcome! Thank you for visiting my blog. This week I had a revelation concerning my mindset. It changed everything about the way I approach my goals.

Advice from a Sage

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Don’t compare apples to oranges.” Dean Holland encouraged us likewise not to compare ourselves to others this week. I shouldn’t compare my progress in online marketing to someone who is not me. After all, someone else may have more experience, time to spend on their business, money to spend on an ad budget, etc. We should only compare ourselves to our past selves and consider our progress.

I took this to heart. In part because I realized the expectations I have for myself are not based on me. They are based on an idealized vision of me. In high school, I could do anything I set my mind to. This poses a problem. For example, consider this week’s progress. Monday was a holiday. My family had a special bonding day together. I had a terrible migraine Tuesday through Thursday and couldn’t accomplish anything. Finally, Friday came along, and I was devastated. My thoughts were, “I write my blog Saturday, and I haven’t accomplished anything this week. What progress can I share with you?”

This is where Dean’s advice cut to the quick. The expectations I have for myself are not based on my current reality. I started this business because my health is unreliable. I cannot work a  regularly scheduled 9-5 job. So I shouldn’t expect to meet a daily schedule in this business. It’s not possible. I’ll repeat that for my own sake: It’s not possible.

And the key is: that’s okay. An apple should be an apple, and an orange should be an orange! It’s okay to expect me to do what I can only when I can. The beauty of this job, which attracts me to it, is I will be able to work on it only when I can and still make a good income. So my expectations should be to do what I can each day and, little by little secure a very secure financial future.

But my dreams go a little further! Mr. Keats (my dog) could have five brothers and sisters to play with! And such a yard! He’d be so happy. Lol! That’s just the beginning.

 

And that’s worth some patience. I must be humble and accept when I can’t do what I want.

After all, if I were a strawberry, I’d be limited to being a strawberry. Strawberry pies are extraordinary.

Apple pie definitely has a place. And orange sherbet ice cream pops are delightful. But strawberry pie is special. I’m letting the idea sink in… My uniqueness has its place and isn’t any less because it’s not what I’d choose. I’m not an apple or an orange. I’ll work at my own pace and do what I can extraordinarily. I’ll be a strawberry.

Why Am I Sharing This?

I’ve heard people struggle similarly starting affiliate marketing. There’s an undefined struggle that goes on inside. There’s a sense of desperation to succeed now, how long is this going to take, what am I doing wrong that it’s taking so long, should I be doing things differently… etc. I can relate to that sensation of angst. Starting this new endeavor, I knew my mindset wasn’t right, but I didn’t know how to change my expectations, so they didn’t choke me.

For me, it was the pressure I was putting on myself. I’m not exactly a perfectionist at this point in life, but I do hold myself to very high expectations. I set finite goals for myself and then accomplished them. At least, that’s the way I’ve always operated. My mind is finally wrapped around some ideas that won’t hinder me. To sum it up, the light bulb clicked on! I’m going to focus on what I’m able to do: follow the defined plan. I will start with an open mind and see how to pace myself. I will focus on working on the plan rather than holding myself to accomplishing a finite goal each day.

Sounds simple enough.

Also, I hope to give hope to those in a similar life situation. If, for whatever reason, it would be better for you to get your primary source of income online, I want to show you it is possible. I always thought affiliate marketing was too good to be true. I thought it was a scam when my husband started looking into it. But I found out I was wrong, thanks to Dean Holland’s book. It described the backbone of affiliate marketing success succinctly. The book described a method to follow and didn’t try to sell anything. I was impressed. Making money online is a real opportunity I can take. I’ll share my experiences along the way. I can be a case study for someone wondering if real people can make an income online. And for those already well on their way, we can encourage each other!

Reassessing Reality- acknowledging my challenges

I’m encouraged that this time-the, getting started working- is the hardest part of my business I’ll ever have. I keep reminding myself I’m also working my day job 4 hours daily, Monday through Friday. No wonder I’m having trouble! My regular job is a set schedule, and I do my best not to miss it no matter what. It takes tremendous effort to also work on my business in the afternoon. Once I’m up and running, I can cut down on my action. It’ll be much easier to make substantial progress in my dream job.

And I’m very encouraged that since I’m only working part-time, I don’t have to make much in my business before I can quit and focus all my energy on making that dream come true. So it’s good to remember it’s going to get easier. I will only need the intensity at this level for a short time.

Moving Forward

As I said last week, I have two main goals in June. First, I still need to set up my lead magnet on my blog. Second, I haven’t yet devoted even 30 hours per month to Quora. I come up with that number because Dean always says if we devote one hour a day to our business doing the right things, we will make progress. Thirty days, thirty hours. I aim to complete these tasks in June: 30 hours answering questions on Quora and my lead magnet setup. Comparing myself just to me, these two actions would be a tremendous leap forward. And, of course, a blog post each week. So, in truth, there are three goals.

Conclusion

I don’t think it’s realistic to expect to hold myself fast to a schedule of accomplishing specific tasks each afternoon. If I can, great! On the days I don’t, I will redirect my mind. Realize I’m doing my best, and allow that to be okay. There will be good days and weekends; I can often work easily and for hours on my business. I’ll focus on having a great month rather than a bunch of individual good days. And, if not, I won’t put myself down or feel defeated. Perhaps I’ll remind myself to avoid false expectations by eating some strawberries!

This is how I will make progress: Do what I can to follow my plan. I have great hopes and expectations!

I hope this encourages you on your own path.

By the way, if you’re interested, you can get Dean’s book, The Iceberg Effect, for the cost of shipping and handling. You get immediate access to the free audiobook at the same time. I just listened to most of mine using my phone and then reviewed using the hard copy of the book. I highly recommend the book if you’re still searching for a plan to begin or be successful at affiliate marketing. What impressed me most is that Dean wasn’t trying to sell anything else. It was just a lot of good information and a plan to follow each day in your business.

How do you stay centered and realistic about your goals? What do you think of my approach? Would you add anything?

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