I’ve decided to make a few changes.
First, I’m killing my blogging schedule. I’ve published twice a week like clockwork for 3+ years now, and that’s plenty. I don’t know what I was trying to prove by sticking with it all this time. I’m long past the point where being faithful to a schedule was beneficial. Going forward I’ll commit only to publishing my fortnightly Momentos series and my monthly finance and traffic reports. Beyond those I’ll only post something when I feel like it.
Second, I’m pushing pause on the Foundations of Entrepreneurship series. My interview with Jen Gresham was the last for a while.
Third, I’ll be waving goodbye to my Sigma 6 income come January. That super-secret project has provided the bulk of my earnings for the past year, about $4k a month that’s been flowing passively into my bank account. Which sounds fantastic and everything, except it’s not a value-adding business that I can be proud of, I haven’t learned much in the way of solid business skills from it, and the easy money has weakened my initiative to go out and build a profitable business for myself. I was more than happy to live with those trade-offs for a while, but it’s gotten to the point now where I feel like I’m taking the piss. Resolving to drop it at the end of the year is a kick up the ass I sorely need.
I’ve also dropped a few other projects I was working on or was considering.
Why shake things up?
For the past several months I’ve been telling anyone who would listen that I’m eager to build a software business, having been inspired by the success stories coming out of The Foundation.
At the same time, I’ve been keeping myself very busy with everything but building a software business, spending significant time recording and editing interviews, writing blog posts, building mailing lists, responding to hundreds of emails, putting together a new book, and on and on and on.
Such activities are worthwhile and everything, but they’re not helping me get where I want to go. And it’s been tempting to stick with all those things because they fit this identity I’ve built up for myself the past three years, the identity of a lifestyle blogger (read: not a businessman).
Now it’s time to let that go. Because I can’t get there (businessman) from here (lifestyle blogger).
I need to blow up the old identity before I can create the new one.
Good enough isn’t good enough
These are big, scary changes for me. It’s so tempting to just continue on doing what I’ve been doing. After all, it’s been working out pretty good, right?
That “good enough” attitude is dangerous though. It’s the same one that keeps people stuck in decent jobs and ho-hum relationships.
Could be worse, they tell themselves, I should be thankful for what I have.
Yes, you should. But that’s no excuse to settle.
The way out is to hold nothing sacred. Be willing to blow everything up and redefine yourself. It sounds silly, but I held my blogging schedule sacred for three years. It was part of my identity, and it was hard to let it go. Nobody was making me stick to it, but I’d somehow come to view it as non-negotiable. Now I can see that I was hesitant to let it go because, more than anything else, it was safe and familiar. If I gave it up, I’d have one less excuse to avoid doing some scary new shit, like building a software business.
“Being busy is most often used as a guise for avoiding the few critically important but uncomfortable actions.” – Tim Ferriss
I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who self-sabotages like this, busying myself with the familiar good at the expense of the unknown great. You’ve probably got something like that yourself. What is it?
Keep this in mind: Do what you’ve always done, and you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.
If this is resonating with you, have a read of these older articles of mine (yes, I’ve been through this before):
Around the world without flying
I should mention my RTW trip before wrapping this up. I’ve been traveling around the world without flying for two years now, and still have a couple of big oceans to cross before I can chalk it up as mission accomplished. Admittedly, I hold this journey more sacred than I should. It’s a huge part of my identity, something I take a lot of pride in. And I know that’s dangerous. I sometimes wonder if I’m sticking to it as an excuse to avoid doing other scary shit, as a handicap I can point to should I fail to succeed at other things, thus absolving me of responsibility (or so my brain would like to believe).
I’ve thought long and hard about that, and for now at least, I’ve decided to continue on. The trade-off is still worth it, and I like to think I’ll have the intelligence to drop it if at any point that ceases to be the case.
Comments are open. Let me know where you’re heading, and how you plan to get there from here.