The first step to succeeding in blogging is what I call the Blog Success Wheel. With this method you need to do three things in order to succeed; Those three things are to be consistent, take action, and be persistent. By doing all these things you have made it possible for you to be successful in your blogging pursuits, what ever your idea of success is. The catch is, if you don’t do any one of those things, you will fail.
Sounds easy, right? But it turns out it’s not. Other wise we wouldn’t hear so many stories of how the overwhelming majority of bloggers don’t make it. They don’t get anywhere. Why is this so? What makes the Blog Success Wheel so damn hard?
I think Yaro Starak in his book Master Your Mindset perfectly explains why (p. 54).
If I was to answer the question why most people do not succeed, I first say it is a lack of action, but I would qualify that by saying behind every lack of action is a limiting belief.
What you need to become successful in blogging and business is all in your head. You have to believe you are successful in order to be successful.
This may sound like mumbo jumbo to some, but it has proved true in my case, and from what I have observed in my years online.
I started blogging a long time ago when I don’t even know if I knew what I was doing was blogging. My most successful blogging venture was with GoddessCarlie.com, where I was blogging about Japanese culture and language from roughly 2007 to 2010. It was a great blog, it was what a lot of people would consider a successful blog. But it wasn’t successful to me. I never took it to where I wanted it to go. Here’s that question again – Why?
I had all the things I needed to succeed. I invested in courses, I knew what to do, I even did a lot of it except for the things that truly would have moved me forward, towards my definition of success. Money wasn’t a problem, neither was lack of knowledge. So why hadn’t I reached my goals with that blog?
The mental game of entrepreneurship is by far the biggest determinant of both success and failure.
Yaro again speaks truth. (Master Your Mindset, p. 7)
My mind was not in the right place. It is obvious to me now, but at the time I had no idea that it was a mindset problem. I just simply didn’t believe that I could do it. It wasn’t overt. I don’t believe actually thinking “I can’t do this”. But I can see now that was the thought behind every action I took, or what I didn’t take, was that I really didn’t believe that I something I could offer. So I didn’t ever do anything of real value, and I didn’t meet my goals because I didn’t believe that I could. And I made stupid excuses.
This is an actual comment I left back in 2007. And look at that; “If I don’t have it (a membership site) by that time, well, I’ll obviously be doing something wrong!”
Not only did I make stupid excuses (apparently there was numerous), I didn’t actually ever achieve anything towards this membership idea, except for writing it down in this comment.
It was 2007 when I knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to create memberships online. This was PERFECT for me. I had to write that in all caps. I love teaching and helping people (I have a degree in Education), I love new media and online technologies (I’ve been blogging and building websites since 1999), and I love working for myself. Doing all this online is the culmination of all I love doing, and I knew all this back in 2007. So what did I do?
I did nothing. I talked about it, I thought about it, but I didn’t actually do anything. I don’t even remember even planning anything about this membership website (maybe because I gave myself a 5 year deadline).
Why People Actually Don’t Succeed Online
Back to my Blog Success Wheel, the reason I believe that people don’t make it online is because they aren’t consistent in what they do (small actions eventually snowball), they don’t take action (without action you have nothing), and they don’t persist (so many people give up before they’ve had a chance to make a difference). And the reason, I believe, behind why people fail in any one of these is because of their mindset.
You can see from my story that my main failing isn’t consistency (I had built up a blog with a sizeable audience in its peak), and it isn’t persistence (I’m still going, it’s almost been 15 years now). My personal problem is action. I am learning to identify what is holding me back from taking action, and doing what I can to overcome this. Do you know what is holding you back? I don’t believe that it is because of any outside source. I am betting that the real thing that is holding you back is yourself.
How To Master Your Mindset
What are some things you can do to master your mindset? I believe you need to set yourself up for success.
Why not make it impossible for you to fail?
Put things in place so that it makes it really hard for you to fail. If you need to lose weight, throw out all the junk food in your house and go to bed in your exercise clothing. That sure makes it hard for you to fail (unless you are running to McDonalds each morning).
One thing that I believe is that unless you are doing it already in your every day life, you do not possess the intrinsic motivation to do it. So don’t expect that you will be able to do it for an extended period of time on willpower alone. You have to find some external motivation, that is some motivation outside of yourself, that will push you to succeed. Here’s a video I have made on the subject.
For me, I find a lot of motivation in hearing about how other people have also struggled with their mindset and self doubt, yet they have overcome it and achieved success. It helps me to feel like I could overcome it too. I also love reading about strategies that people use to master their mindset, which is why I got Yaro Starak’s book.
Achieving success is another thing that can be motivating. If you are constantly failing, then it doesn’t exactly inspire you to keep going. But, if you are constantly being successful in what you do, you believe more and more that you are successful. Set small, achievable goals that you can achieve in a short amount of time. The small things really add up.
Another way to master your mindset is to act like you already are successful. It’s the fake it til you make it mentality. Laura Roeder speaks about thinking about how a successful person acts, then you simply act like that. A successful person is not sitting around and wondering why things aren’t happening. They are out there, creating and producing, and they are networking. If you are unsure what a successful person is like, then observe someone you admire and aspire to be. What are they doing? Are they releasing products, are they on podcasts, are they producing videos? Once you’ve observed, why not approach them and say you like what they are doing? Approach them as a successful person would.
Here’s a sum up of some things you can do to master your mindset.
- Put things in place to make it hard for you to fail.
- Find external motivation.
- Set small, achievable goals so you are constantly being successful.
- Act like you are already successful and success will follow.
How Are You Mastering Your Mindset?
I’m not a master by any sorts over my mindset. I still feel the fear, I still have self doubt. But I am not letting it hold me back. In fact, by online blogging standards, I am very successful. I have now made thousands of dollars online, and I have a business which I feel is heading towards where I want it to go. I am taking things a day at a time, and I am seeing my efforts rewarded. With each small success I know I cam coming closer to building the blog and business that I want.
Let me know in the comments below about your own journey over your mindset. Are you mastering it? What do you do to keep your blog moving forward towards success?