I remember the first time I looked down a river with fast rapids and big rocks. I was about fifteen and scared to death. I had only been in a canoe a few times before that, but that was in a small, calm lake. This was a river right after the snow had melted. The water was fast.
It was the local canoe race they hold in my town every year. It’s sort of a big thing and everyone lines the bridges and streets along the river route to see the idiots in the river. I was going to run the face with a friend of mine and we were borrowing an old metal canoe that had more leaks in it than the Titanic. If you were to ask us then we would have both said it was going to be a piece of cake. Today, I am not ashamed to admit I was scared.
But I did it.
I went down the river. We flipped it three times. I was completely soaked. By the time we got to the finish line we were both cold, shivering, blue lips, and ecstatic. We finished and we survived.
The last few months of my life have been pretty, well… let’s just say they haven’t been the happiest. I wouldn’t even call them miserable. It’s been worse. At times I had the same feeling I had when facing that river. Scared.
There are also times when internet marketing, affiliate marketing, running an online business, or whatever you want to call it, is also pretty scary. Challenges are waiting around the corner. Setbacks are going to happen. Frustration is going to set in. Bad decisions will be made. Money will be lost. And you will get scared. The last few months have been like that. Maybe you noticed, if you’re a regular reader, that my posts have been pretty scarce. (I know, I broke a major rule of blogging.)
It’s not because I didn’t want to blog. Didn’t have anything to say. Or didn’t think about it all the time. It was because of some challenges I had to face. Challenges I am now glad came my way for it opened my eyes, instilled some character, taught me a great deal and showed me where I was weak.
However, that’s really not the point of this post. The point of this post is that in everything we do in our lives there are going to be times when things don’t go right. They don’t go as we planned them to go. There are going to be challenges. Unforeseen things just waiting for you.
Internet marketing is always a challenge. Even when you think you’ve got it figured out. It’s like facing a raging river in a leaky canoe. It’s scary.
The best thing you can do is to weather it out. Put one foot in front of the other and continue going in a forward direction. It’s a natural reaction to shy away from something that hurts. Or something that we know is going to be painful. Setbacks, frustrations, depressions, and failed expectancies are going to be places you will periodically visit. Brace yourself for them and will yourself to persevere.
Steps to defeating setbacks and frustrations while building your online business.
I’m not going to lie. I almost gave it all up.
There was an instant, very recently, when I almost stopped with my online career. Stopped writing. Stopped creating. Stopped everything. I was pretty fed up with what was going on in my life. But, I didn’t. I made a decision to keep going and it was some of theses things that helped me. While the heading of this section states these steps are for an online business you can use these steps in every area of your life.
Remember what you’re already accomplished. One of the things that helped me continue with my work online is remembering the things I’ve already been able to do. I faced one challenge in starting my writing career and many other challenges along the way. It would be silly of me to just quit.
Surround yourself with people who care. My family was a major help the last few months. Friends I’ve had for a long time were there when I needed a little cheering up. People I’ve met online, I’ve worked for, and have connected with in some way or another, were understanding and patient. It’s a major benefit, and incredible boost, to have friends and family around you who care.
Be thinking of the future. When you dwell on your problems you most likely stay in that problem. I have several notebooks full of dreams and ideas. I am always thinking of what could be and what I’d like to do. One day when I was feeling particularly down I bought a brand new notebook. Nothing fancy. It was just a regular, run of the mill, spiral notebook. And I started thinking, dreaming, and planning for a future. I actually forgot what was going on in my life. It was the beginning point to healing.
Reaffirm who you are. I don’t want this part to sound too arrogant or prideful. But to make the point I want to make I have to do this: I am good at what I do.
I can create, write, and plan advertising strategies for people so that they begin to make money online. I’ve been doing it for a while now and with each new client, each new ad campaign, each new marketing piece… I get a little bit better.
That’s what I’ve been telling myself for two months. That’s what you need to do to help you face challenges and breakthrough setbacks and frustrations. Reaffirm that you know what you’re doing. Even if you don’t! One of the biggest ways to actually do something is to believe you can. That sets the bar higher, your desire to learn greater, and your resistance to failure stronger.
Be grateful for the challenge. Challenges build character. They build strength. They create ideas and thoughts. They force you to grow a little bit. Sometimes even a lot. Don’t be depressed about the things that happen. Do just the opposite. Be grateful! That doesn’t mean you have to be happy about it. Just be thankful for the opportunity you had to learn, grow, and become much stronger because of it.
Internet marketing is a challenge. It’s full of twists, turns, setbacks, and difficulties. You will fail… a lot. You will lose money. You will waste a lot of time. You will most likely feel like quitting. Don’t.
Learn from the challenges. Learn from the mistakes. Jump into that raging river and keep paddling forward. You’re going to have calmer waters.
I hope this helps those who are fighting, struggling, and having doubts. I know that these steps were what motivated me to continue. I hope they do the same for you.