Issue 16: Tiny Goal: Make €1 on the Internet (Part 1 of 2)

If you were to make €1 on the internet without gambling any of your own money, how would you do it? It is a lot tougher than you may think to make that first €1 but it is doable. I decided to write about this and make the Instagram post that I made because I think that making money online is something that is flaunted and promoted by those that are already doing it but to actually get to the position they’re in is very tough. Some people do it by selling people shit that they don’t need, others live the guru lifestyle convincing people that they need to do x to make money online (trying not to picture myself as this right now), and others simply lie about how they make money online. There is a minority of those who get there respectfully and in a way that doesn’t make other people’s lives worse off. 

Leveraging the internet has been a hot topic since its inception in the 90s. However, unless you’re the best in your industry or you have access to incredible resources that give you a competitive advantage it is very hard to make that first buck. But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean you have to necessarily kick the bucket on making money online. Most companies today are leveraging the internet to reach their customers and sell them stuff that they may or may not need, so why can’t you use the internet to make money in your own way? Well, one of the reasons you will find it hard is due to the amount of competition. You may then think that all you need to do is find your target audience and niche right? Well, yes but there’s a high likelihood that your niche isn’t as big of a niche as you may think. There are a lot of people who may not be doing exactly what you’re doing but something along the lines of your niche, and if they’re doing that something better than you are, well then good luck convincing their audience or customers that you’re a better choice or person to follow. 

This is where I think value comes in. If you’re dedicated to providing some sort of value to some sort of person, I think that it doesn’t matter then whether or not trying to sell them stuff or not. If by a significant enough level you can make another person’s life better off by leveraging the internet, then you’re already doing something right. You need to value-add in order to be in any way feasible of making that €1 online. So ask yourself how can you add value to other people’s lives? And then validate this, as an example when Amazon was first launching instead of making the assumption “people will want to buy books online”, they decided a better way to prove their assumption is by validating it. Amazon was better off making the statement “last month we sold 500 books online.” 

I know this may be a very abstract explanation of the concept of adding value, but I hope you understand what I’m trying to get at here. Essentially, what I’m trying to say is you’ll need to become good at something that will help others. After that depending on how much value you add you will be able to monetize. BOCTAOA

I will come back with a Part 2.

Issue 15: Seizing Opportunities.

So I haven’t been writing much recently, I’ve been appearing inactive, and haven’t been discussing my thoughts. And only today I have confirmed to myself what has been going on. 

With exams, last-minute deadlines, chores, exercise, and all other activities, I’ve been making excuses left-right-and-centre. I’ve been giving myself pretty good reasons not to do certain things and expertly justifying other things. This morning, I realised and finally accepted that I’m trying to do so many different things that I end up doing and achieving nothing significant with my days. The fleeting distractions that we can get caught up in seem like an interesting path until you realise that it’s a bit of a dead end for you and maybe the other thing that you wanted to do had a bit more sunshine on the path. 

To be frank, my dreams as of late have been really contradicting and overwhelming and I’ve noticed this in my sleeping positions too. I would dream something, then I would notice I’m dreaming, and turn over in bed leading to another dream, this would repeat itself on and on till I wake up restless. I don’t really know why I’m writing this here but sure why not? It kind of falls in line with what I’m trying to discuss here. You see, what I’ve noticed is that by procrastinating on some things we instantly free up our time to do something else; and this “something else” can either be something better or something worse. “Something better” could be classified as something closer to what you want to be doing with your life in that exact moment or something that leads you closer to whatever it is that you love to do. “Something worse” I would classify as the fleeting joys, the easy options, and things that steer us further away from our desires and passions.

It’s very easy to start something new compared to staying consistent on previously set tasks, goals, and desires. Don’t get me wrong no path is so linear that you always simply trundle onwards in a straight line, however, having ten different paths that lead in no general direction is what you need to watch out for, and this is what I’ve confirmed myself today. I can justify this situation I put myself in because I feel it has reassured me and brought me closer to the things that I actually want to do, and for this sole reason I believe getting thrown of the track is worth it. Like if you really want to do something, chances are you’re gonna do it, regardless of its highs and lows. The trick lies in the lies that you can tell yourself that “this IS what I want to do”, when really it isn’t at all. The only way you can understand whether or not you’re telling yourself that lie is to understand yourself better. And as I think I have mentioned in an issue before this discovery of self is a noble pursuit. 

Anyways that was my first rant back after a while of drifting. I do love a bit of drifting, but after a while I think it’s important to get back to shore and make sure you’re not stuck in the middle of a vast ocean with no sight of land. To finish off I leave you with your favourite thing, a quote from our homie Sun Tzu: 

“A good traveller has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” 

Issue 13: Stop Rating Things 7/10

I love making small changes that have a big impact. We are consuming so many things every single day that it would be emotionally and mentally frustrating to keep track of every single thing. Recently my personal digital consumption has been much healthier and consisted of a lot less junk. What is junk consumption? That’s something I’ll write another piece on, since it’s a big topic (i.e. I’m too lazy to write about it right now); briefly it is stuff that you know you shouldn’t be consuming but consume anyways because you like it. A physical – not digital – example would be those pastries and cookies you eat that your mama bakes for you, you know it’s not the healthiest choice, but you can’t say no to your mama’s baking. 

Keeping Track

So my digital junk consumption has gone down, why? Because I’ve been keeping track of the articles I read, the videos/movies I watch, the music I listen to, and the websites I click into; some of which can be found here. And what I’ve been doing is rating some of these, but, and there’s always a BUT, I haven’t been using the number 7 on the scale. 7/10 is the default rating we give to things that we enjoyed, but that we also know was below what we expected. Honestly, it’s the safest number you can give something and not upset anyone at the same time. 

6/10 or 8/10 Only

Take a minute and think of the last conversation you had, article/paragraph you read, video you watched, or anything you consumed and give it a rating out of 10 without using the number 7. As you’ll see there’s much less ambiguity. It’s either a “meh wouldn’t recommend to a friend” 6/10, or a “let’s do it again sometime” 8/10. Why I’m writing about this is because I’ve seen it work wonders since I’ve adopted it in my life. 

BOCTAOE

What this stands for is “but of course there are obvious exceptions”, coined by Scott Adams, so that he could write it at the end of the dodgy tweets he wanted to write that he knew would trigger others (remember this acronym, I’ll be using it a lot more). Why I write it here is because not everything needs to be labelled with a number. I repeat, not everything needs to be labelled with a number. This is for me more than anyone else as I can do this a bit too much. To conclude, why not give taking 7/10 out of your ratings a go? Also ask other people what they would rate something out of 10 without using 7, it’s great fun I must admit. 

Extra: I used subheadings for the first time in this issue in order to see if it would work or not, the only way I’ll find out is if some of you would be kind enough to let me know. You can do this by clicking this survey link, those that answer the surveys when I put them out help a bucketload, I give you a 10/10. 

Also for those who feel that this needed to be a little bit longer, so do I. However, I want to keep these sweet and short because I believe there a lot of things that could be a couple of hundred words or minutes shorter and convey the same message.

I also made a YOUTUBE VIDEO on this issue.  

Issue 11: Action and Inaction.

I’m here to address one thing today, and if I’m successful at doing this one thing then I’ll consider this issue worthwhile. Before I fire away, I want to figure out what the best way to introduce this topic would be. I want to do it in a way that I haven’t thought of doing it before, let’s use this issue to get creative. 

Watered Olives is a male 24 year-old. He wants to start a drawing but he’s not sure whether or not it will be good. What led him to the thought was an inspiration of something he could picture himself sketching down on a piece of paper. Full of enthusiasm he begins to think about whether or not he should get the piece of paper and pencil so that he can start drawing. He debates in his mind whether or not it will turn out as good as he pictures it in his mind. He also spends time thinking about how those around him will judge what he draws if they were to see it. After a prolonged back and forth in his mind, he continues to sit and scroll on his phone. 

Can you see the mistake he made? Can you pinpoint the exact moment of this short story that was Watered’s biggest obstacle?

I know that a lot of people out there have things that they want to try out for the first time or stuff they would like to do, only to be stopped by their own little voices in their heads. It’s incredible how one small little voice in your mind can be the main driver and decider of what you do if you constantly listen to it. In a crowd of 10,000 individuals screaming, if you’re determined to listen to one individual you will hear what he has to say if you listen closely enough. Why not take a step away from this one voice and maybe walk around the crowd? What are some of the other things that you might hear if you walk around the crowd? To do this try to grasp the sheer amount of different perspectives, lenses, and points of view that you can take on a particular idea, topic, or subject. 

How come whenever I have an idea to do something I’m shut down by this voice? How come I think about what other people will think if I do something? Am I doing it for myself or for other people? Will it make me more content or other people? Of course, there are exceptions to this approach of thinking. Like you definitely shouldn’t do things that will harm or negatively impact others. But if you’re inspired to do something. If you can even sense a spark of inspiration, I ask, why don’t you add lighter fluid to the spark and do something great and beautiful with that inspiration? Why don’t you take action rather contemplate it next time you’re inspired? 

et’s make a deal now. I won’t care what other people think when I do something; will you do the same? Make this deal with me if you need it for inspiration and off you go. But remember… actually, I’ll write this as a lesson to myself: “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” So I shouldn’t be thinking that I’m all that great from this one action I’ve made. Consider it a stepping stone. 

I’ve started to think recently that I’m in no position to give advice to others if I haven’t set myself straight first. So I write to you as if you are suffering from the same things I am. Do NOT look at me as if I’m in a position to preach. I will end this on a Tweet from Naval, which inspired this issue: 

“Impatience with actions, patience with results.”

Issue 8: Doing The Bare Minimum.

Why do I always try to achieve the most amount of results with a minimal amount of work? I tend to do the bare minimum and try to milk as much as I can out of it. Keep in mind that I tend not to aim for 100% perfection, but expect at least a solid 70/80% whenever I do something. 

And now that I have physically written this question down the answer has come to me. It comes back to the 80/20 rule. It’s the idea that 80% of the results come from 20% of the work. But then again is it worthwhile to deliver something that is only 80% complete? Or is it better to deliver something that is a full 100% and ready for consumption? From what I remember learning and reading about start-ups, it was always recommended to ship early iterations of products because that way you haven’t wasted too much time making something that nobody wants. This applies in a highly uncertain, consumer-driven environment. However, the same rules do not apply in other areas. For example, you can’t ship a vaccine that is 80% complete and only took minimal effort to develop. This would be catastrophic, as this interferes with people’s health and wellbeing. 

So then the question arises, if I was to put more than 20% of my time and energy into something to achieve an extra few percent above 80%, will it be worth it? Is an additional 5% of results worth double the work? And more importantly, will having to aim for 90/100 prevent me from doing anything at all? 

I believe that if I was to set out to do something 100% there’s a high likelihood that I’ll talk myself out of doing it at all. So for that reason, I tend to engage in the 80/20 rule, it is only after I have completed the 80% that I can commit to bringing it up to 100%, buy only if I’m arsed and if I’m really engaged in the subject or activity. But otherwise, I just leave it as it is. I’m not sure if this is right or wrong, but it makes sense to me if some results or value is created in a general direction. It gets the ball rolling in my opinion. So go ahead and half arse something you’ve been putting off for too long! 

Extra: I’m keen to hear all opinions on this, so let me know what you think in the questionnaire I’ve attached, feel free to attach your name or remain anonymous. Link