I remember when I had first started seriously considering the opportunities available to me of making a few dollars with my online properties and my blogs and thinking to myself “Wow, it looks so amazing! It would be the perfect lifestyle!”
I had these crazy thoughts that somehow it would change everything and life would be so much better this way – it was a bit like a Japanese Anime cartoon where everything is bigger, more pronounced (like their hair and eyes) and everything just is fine and dandy with big peace signs and buckets of cash.
… I honestly thought it would be like I was living on a different planet. I had no idea what I was thinking.
What I failed to realize and what I eventually found to be true was that making money online or making money with your blog is just like anything else: It’s work. It’s good old fashioned work. You “do” it just like you do many other things – you sit there in a chair and trade your hours for dollar bills (maybe, hopefully, sometimes).
Using your online properties to generate an income isn’t glamorous – it’s just a different type of J.O.B. I don’t want to burst your bubble but there’s nothing really special or unique about it either. I’m not downplaying it or Debbie Downing it (or Negative Nancy?) – I’m just putting it on the same playing field as any other job and any other profession.
The genesis of this post was that I happened to encounter yet another starry-eyed and very green blogger who had somehow figured out that making money online was like winning the lottery – or that’s how he described it. It was fantastical, whimsical, hyper-romantic, and very emotional.
I gently brought him down to earth and asked him what he thought a “typical” day looked like for a full time blogger or for an internet marketer or for someone who spends the majority of his money online. He looked puzzled. I asked again and I could see the wheels turning around in his mind about what it really looks like:
I guess… it’s like… writing stuff and talking to other people a lot and business-y stuff.
“Exactly.” I told him, “Just like 99% of all other jobs out there.”
I could tell he was a bit deflated so I encouraged him to pursue it, experiment with it, and see what happens as there is nothing wrong with “trying it on” for a bit and seeing what sticks. But reality had sunk in – the glitz, the glam, the glory, it was all in his head.
We spoke for a bit more and then he excused himself to get some work done on the other side of the coffee shop – I felt ambivalent about the encounter but I knew that I had spoke the truth – blogging, building online products and applications, it’s all the same as doing other types of work. It’s great work, for sure, and I love what I do, but if I don’t work then I don’t eat.
This ain’t the movies kid!
[This is part of the Escaping the 9-5: My Road to ProBlogging series.]