Four Bleeping Hours! Daily!

Just to keep up with your emails!

I recently had a discussion with a colleague — someone new to the world of Internet Marketing. Like so many newbies, she had subscribed to several guru newsletters and had bought a course or two, OK, make that three or four and maybe more. What this means of course is a very active Inbox. In the course of our conversation she fessed up that going through the emails took as much as four hours every day. Four hours? Four bleeping hours! She was frustrated that after half a year the results were abysmal and was wondering if she shouldn’t throw in the towel with this latest venture of building a blog income and try something else.

Ok, four hours may be a bit on the high end of the spectrum for just “managing” your inbox, but honestly, don’t all of us fall victim to doing exactly what my friend did? Lets do a quick inventory. How many newsletter subscriptions do you have? How many courses have you signed up for – the freebie ones, the cheapie ones, and the not so cheapies? You get emails from all of those too even after the course has run its course (yes pun intended … ok, I just couldn’t help myself). Never mind the plethora of jokes from friends who obviously have no intention of making money on the internet. Then of course those jokes have to be forwarded to your own special inner joke circle.

STOP! This is insanity! If you’re serious about becoming an Internet Marketer – one that makes money that is – then you have to declutter, unsubscribe, don’t open the jokes – or at least save them for “break” time. I save mine for the weekends, and if some don’t get opened, so what.

The first thing that newbies need to know is that the internet is not a free ride. It is a continuous process of learning, and, unless you have the basics down pat, you’re never going to join the ranks of the gurus whose newsletters you so readily subscribed to and from whom you bought the courses and for which you now have no time because it takes you four bleeping hours every day just to read all that good stuff that comes into your inbox. FOUR HOURS!!! … and there is so much information you don’t know where to start and then you get frustrated because nothing is working and you throw up your hands in frustration and start looking for the holy grail of the internet and you can’t find it! Whew! Months go by, even years.

Don’t fall victim to this trap.

I bet you have emails in your Inbox that have not been opened.  I would even go so far as to say that some have been sitting there for over a week, maybe even a month!  Be ruthless with the stale dated ones – open and unsubscribe.  Don’t start reading!  If you haven’t read something for a month don’t read it now!  If you really like the newsletters save the links.  You can always resubscribe at some future date when you are ready for more and have learned how to manage your online time better.

Good News/Bad News. The good news is that you know more about the internet than you think you do. You’ve gone through kindergarten. You know the basics of being on the computer: open, close, send & receive emails, browse, Google something. You might even be active on some social marketing sites … you know, Facebook, Twitter and perhaps niche specific social media sites. Later on you will learn how to use these sites as valuable marketing tools, but for now, put your time into the action packed basics that will help you towards earning an online income.

Take these steps immediately:

1.  Email all your joke buddies. Tell them that you love them and appreciate their jokes but could they put them on hold for several months. Tell them that you are working on a very important project to build a blog income and much as you love a good laugh here and there, for the time being the Ha Ha’s have to stop.

2.  Love em and leave em. Unsubscribe to all but 5 of the top newsletters you receive.  Make sure that the ones you decide to keep will add value to your online income career.  I would suggest that you keep one or two that give information on how to maximize your blog, the others should be about your niche so that you can broaden your own expertise in your field.

3.  Those course gather dust on the shelves are never going to do you any good unless you crack them open and start in on them.  If you more than one still sitting there (or downloaded into your computer), choose one to work on now.  Calendar time to work on it.  . Whether you decide to devote 3 or 4 hours a day or a week, schedule it. This is very important. I would recommend scheduling some time on a daily basis, but if the weekend is all that you can realistically devote to your course, then bunch up the hours, four or five on Saturday and another four or five on Sunday. 

4.   Resist the temptation to check on your Inbox all the time.  I used to check three times a day, now I check only twice a day.  Once in the morning and again at close of my official business hours.

5.  Small consistent steps will pay off.  Do whatever you can to free up more time to do that which is a high gain activity … write daily.  You don’t have to publish daily, but by putting in even 30 minutes a day on writing, you will be building your blogging muscles and will always have articles on the go.

this post was first published in December 2008.

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