Okay maybe it’s more than a few…
BUT today I’m only going to talk about one of them… naivety.
There’s this virus permeating the internet business community. It’s a typical virus in that it’s contagious, so other people can get it and spread it. It has several obvious symptoms: disconnected, naivety, a hint of narcissism, and Pinocchio-like nose growth.
The symptoms aren’t obvious at first but if you listen closely you can tell when someone has been infected.
You’ll hear things like:
“I want to help as many people as possible so I’ve raised my rates 400%.”
“My ebook is only $6 because I want to help people who can’t afford my $800 coaching rate.”
“I’m different than everyone else out there, I’m real.”
You’ll see things like:
Random and thin testimonials or none.
Completely random and disconnected services, like copywriting and massage therapy.
No evidence of results, like case studies of clients.
The most obvious thing you’ll notice is that it isn’t a progressive virus, nope, there’s no sneezing then fever, then chills, then coughing, etc.
Nope it’s all… “I’m fine”… then bleeding ebola eyes.
One minute they are charging a humble $99 an hour, next day, *bam* $600.
I know very few business professionals who make $600 an hour. I know managing partners at large law firms who don’t charge that for an hour. So how does someone who’s been “in business” for 18 months make that leap?
Run as far and as fast as you can. Seriously. It’s a fraud.
It’s a fraud on your better judgment. It’s a fraud to your business growth.
For $600 an hour I better make that back in one month and someone better be standing over me fanning me while I do it.
There are simply very few people competent and experienced enough to demand that kind of rate. I know of one off hand, Ramit Sethi. He claims he charges $1200 an hour. His website is filled with case studies. His content is pages long. His content is supported by example and references. He cites sources. He interviews his success stories. He never stops working. I honestly am truly impressed by the amount of content he pumps out and the quality. More importantly, he shows you how to “start” earning money 1k at a time. There’s no hype. He isn’t going to teach you to make a million dollars your first year in business. He is going to teach you to start making a little money now. Even more importantly, he’s been doing this same thing for years. He hasn’t jumped from copywriting to marketing to social media back to copywriting. Nope, same business, six years.
Why is that important?
Because that is where every business starts; Apple and Microsoft started in garages. It took years of work to become the powerhouses they are today, not 18 months.
Every business starts with $1. The first dollar. Then there’s another. Then another. Businesses don’t start out with gross income of $20,000 in the first year and then suddenly deserve $20,000 a month. It doesn’t work that way in the real world.
In the real world it starts with one transaction, one happy customer, one great experience. And then another.
Does this mean you shouldn’t dream big? Nope, not at all. I truly believe you should dream big but everything is a process, everything takes time.
Your Big Dream
Your dream should lie at the base of everything you do every day. It should be the end game, the thing you work towards every day. To think that it is achieved in a month is a false truth that will only serve to disappoint you each and every day.
Your dream should be at the heart of each goal you set. As you reach each goal you step closer to making your dream a reality.
There simply is no magic potion or pill or hour filled with advice that can do that.
A coaching client said something to me I hadn’t thought of before, she said that she didn’t pay for coaching because she thought it would solve her problems. She paid for coaching because she wants and needs the support, the sounding board, the idea generation, the solution suggestions, etc. She knows the path to success and achieving it lies within her.
Should you pay for coaching and consulting and classes and ebooks? Sure if you believe that they can help you make better choices because ultimately it comes down to you.
But before you invest your money in anyone or anything, I would encourage you to look for experience, look for those people who are confirming that this journey is not for everyone, look for those people who will tell you the truth about what it takes and how it works.
If you are simply paying someone to make you feel good, just realize that it wears off, it doesn’t last.
So how do you fight the virus? How do you avoid being infected?
First, don’t buy into someone else’s dream. Work your own dream.
Second, find someone or someones who share the desire to achieve their dreams and connect with them. Hang out with them on Skype, talk on the phone, and meet in person if you can. Share your trials and tribulations together and help one another.
Third, before you spend another dime, get a referral, a real referral. Not a testimonial. Call someone you know who has used the service or product and get their honest take. Ask for a free call to meet the person and chat. Tell them what you hope to achieve and ask if they can help you. Make sure it’s a good fit. Run away if they start to hard sell you.
Remember that in ancient Egypt, many times a Pharoh would start a major construction project… think Pyramids, knowing they would die before ever seeing them finished. They knew it was a process, it was something they worked toward every day, it was the dream. They knew that there was no magic elixir that could change the process. It was going to take time and they were okay with it.
Before you get caught up, before you get infected, remember what you are trying to achieve ultimately and decide whether or not you really need the advice of an infected person.
Infected folks tend to have businesses that flip and flounder, the go up and down. They have pay what you can sales to generate income because their business revenue is uneven, shaky and thin.
Many very famous personal development speakers have lived in debt up to their eyeballs all the while telling you about ultimate personal achievement. Napoleon Hill died broke.
And finally, before you get sucked in, if you are convinced you need to follow the potentially infected give it a day or two… then check the eyes for bleeding.