Turning Great Ideas Into Good Income Online (For Conscious Folks Only)
Ohhh gorgeous thing...When you gonna get up there and sing? When you gonna get up there and take your place on stage? 'Cause a talent is a terrible thing to waste... ~ The Audreys
Here's a fact you don't hear spoken too often: Hardly anyone attempting to make a living online with conscious integrity actually accomplishes this. Yes, you might be able to squeeze a few hundred bucks out here or there easy enough, but I'm talking serious online income from your heart's calling -- enough to quit your "real" job and travel comfortably around the world if you wanted to...without selling your soul.
That's not to say you can't do it. Many people have -- like many of these folks -- just that it takes a lot of ingenuity, hustle and talent, and a good dash of luck. (It helps if you have a fat wad of cash or credit to throw in too, but that's not a necessity -- I started at less than zero myself.)
You see a lot of these people sharing their secrets and teaching how they've done it, and so often their stuff doesn't really resonate because few of them actually think and see the world the way we do ("we" being conscious, intuitive, creative people who resonate with Fierce Wisdom).
So -- what is it we want really? The world, basically:
The money and autonomy to do pretty much whatever we want, whenever we want to...
I've had this dream for a long time -- as long as I can remember -- and maybe you have too.
I'll share a little about my own story and struggles with living the dream too, but let's first go over some meat and potatoes:
A. 3 Key Ingredients;
B. The One Big Thing you can't do without;
C. The Secret Sauce part (hint: it's yours and yours alone).
[box]Note: This article is fairly long at about 3,000 words, but pay close attention to the 'Rules of Thumb' at the end of each section, and share/link to it so you remember to come back and re-read it -- you'll want to do this if you're at all serious and it resonates with you... :)[/box]
The 3 Keys: Ingenuity, Hustle & Talent
Disclaimer: A recipe is only as good as the ingredients you use and the seasoning you choose -- make it taste good to you, ok? :)
Real ingenuity in this case means you take the knowledge and experience you've gained from a lifetime of experience, and apply it somewhat ingeniously to a pre-existing model for business online. In the case of our people -- here to serve and make the world a better place -- we're applying our experience to solving a core set of problems.
The first thing to get clear about is what problems we're solving for ourselves, and what we're solving for others. These diverge a lot, so we want to get clear on the differences and overlaps here.
Typical thinking goes like this:
You start with the big question: I have a dream -- how can I achieve my dream?
You know you need money -- a good chunk to live well -- which leads to the next one... I know I have a good idea and offering, I just need to apply it to a good online business model and hopefully start making some money!
Next... I know I can be of real service to the world -- if I can figure out how to help people solve their problems, and do it better than that other person, it'll rock! They, do it, why can't I? The universe will provide...
Finally... Mehh it's not working like I thought! How come so-and-so is doing SO GREAT, and their stuff is crap compared to mine! It's back to the drawing board, or maybe I should try something completely different...
Why you need to think different:
Real ingenuity means you bring in that little something that NO ONE ELSE HAS into the picture. You take an existing basic model, and flip it on its head.
It's great to learn from people who have succeeded -- you will always be building on the foundations they've laid -- but if you want that for yourself you've got to make it BRAZENLY your own.
Your Unique Genius comes from a lifetime of overcoming specific challenges. If you want to know what it takes -- just dive into the specific experiences you've had in your life.
Ask yourself: What have I mastered? What great obstacles have I overcome? What is my unique genius? What do people complement me about often, and thank me for? What am I naturally great at doing easily?
The more you can dive into all these, and weave them into your business and offering, the more likely you are to create a standout product from your idea. In this world flash, buzz and marketing are just a tiny piece of the puzzle -- you want to make stuff that works and resonates deeply. You can only do that with deep reflection on your core values and experience in overcoming your own challenges.
Ingenuity Recap: (yes, it's important enough for a recap!)
Start at the center -- yourself -- and work out from there.
Take the time to differentiate between the problems you're solving for yourself, and those of the people you're serving. Do this by asking yourself and your audience, taking lots of notes and paying close attention.
Always keep refining and improving your ideas and your creations. Build on your successes. I guarantee you have the potential to be freakin' rock star caliber at your mission, otherwise your heart wouldn't be crying for you to do this.
[box]The best way to understand who you're serving is create a simple survey using a Google Docs Form or Survey Monkey. The results can be amazing. If you're just starting out you may need to bribe people with rewards to complete your survey. You can offer them something free in exchange -- for instance, every one who completes the survey is entered to win one of 3 free consulting sessions (on condition they give you a testimonial -- two birds with one stone.)[/box]
The foundation of ingenuity is your 100% commitment to live in alignment with your mission and believe in yourself. This holds everything else in place.
Ingenuity Rule of Thumb: Always listen to your heart. If your instincts pull you one way, but conventional wisdom pulls the other, always go with your gut.
OK, so this is the one people with a lot of heart have trouble with. This is why you see so many general idiots and hucksters doing well online, because they live for the hustle (and they do it without integrity). You've gotta live for it too. You've gotta want it so bad you can't live without it -- whatever it takes to get you to your dream -- and do the work you're called to do in this life.
Once you get so tightly wrapped up in that mission -- like it's rockin your soul and pulling YOU -- then you can let up a little, and let it ride you a bit. At those times it's like you're a fighter pilot flying 1,500 miles per hour, and there's no time for flight lessons -- you're running on pure adrenaline and learning to fly as you go.
You've gotta push yourself out of the comfort zone when it's called for -- pretty much always. Push yourself to connect with the masters and influencers who can teach you so much, and open doors for you. Push yourself to make stuff happen, and execute on your ideas. It's all about connecting for real with people you genuinely respect and admire, and learning by doing -- putting it out there even when it's less than perfect.
When it's time, you'll want to have something comprehensive to show for yourself -- a project based on real content, real heart and soul, and real know-how. The right people will recognize what you're doing and give you a lift if it's the right time and the right match.
[box]Remember why your hustling -- is it for "living the dream" or being of service to your mission and your people? It can't just be selfish and money-driven, or it will never work. One thing about our people -- we're really driven by our hearts and the bigger mission of our lives in service to the world. It's so much more fun that way! The money is a side benefit of you stepping into your work and universal energy flow with 100% commitment.[/box]
Hustle Rule of Thumb: If you're feeling comfortable in the hustle you're probably going too easy on yourself. Ride the line between pushing the edges of what you can reasonably handle and going in over your head. It's a fine line to walk, but you'll always pull through with a few good friends around to support you.
A lot has been said about this -- like either you have it, or you have to earn it through 10,000 hours of practice. The misconception stemming from the 'Outliers' theory that you can only be really exceptional at anything after 10,000 hours experience is pure Bulls**t and studies are being released right now that turn the 10,000 hours theory on its head.
Yes, everyone has some things they're better at, some things they're not so good at, and some things they're amazing at. The cool thing about talent is -- whatever you're naturally really good at can always be applied to a heart-based online business model with a little ingenuity. When you're teaching and creating online courses, workshops, events, etc., you will bring in those natural talents to make your work shine and have edge.
The stuff you're not so good at naturally, you WILL need to outsource or trade for . Don't waste all your energy trying to do graphic design if you suck at it. The only thing you really need to learn is how to create great content based on what you know. Anyone can learn that. T
For instance, I was predisposed from a young age to act in the theater -- you could say I had a talent for acting, but really it comes down to standing in front of hundreds of people and charming their pants off. What I learned from all this practice I've gradually learned to bring into any positions of leadership where I'm working with a group. Certainly there are obstacles to doing this online, so I have to really look at this experience, and apply some ingenuity. :)
The point is: All the experience you've had over a lifetime has culminated at this point in which you've finally made up your mind to live according to your heart's calling and make it happen no matter what it takes. That's big.
You will be at a different stage than anyone else -- you might just be playing with the idea of bringing your mission to life, or you may be a seasoned and veteran teacher with many years of experience -- but now you have the opportunity to let that talent shine for the world to see.
The opportunity of exposure and connection with the web is unparalleled in history. The people who are not able to see this and begin learning the language of the web are wasting their talents.
Practice, practice, practice, and don't be afraid to learn as you go. You'll never be perfect and nobody wants you to be perfect anyway -- we want you in all your shining glory. So give it up for what you believe in.
Talent Rule of Thumb: Learn to differentiate between discomforts. The resistance to making your great work is totally different from the discomfort of doing what you think you "should" do. When you're really following your heart, your creative genius has the chance to shine and any resistance is exciting -- it's a heart-fluttering kind of feeling.
What You Can't Do Without: The Community
The community is the real key, of course. It's what funds your business, what inspires your business, and drives your greatest work. Let's break these down into three main groups:
1. Fans, clients and customers: The lifeblood of your business. They're who you're in business for -- don't forget that.
2. Fellow trailblazers and influencers: Your compatriots, partners and inspiration at all different levels. You'll build alliances and help each other out in reaching the top of your game.
3. Masters and mentors: These are people already near or at the top of their game. You'll learn from them, support their work, and gradually earn their trust.
Your work is NOTHING without the community -- don't ever forget it.
Unfortunately in our modern culture where money and independence reign supreme, community is barely understood. Spend more time in groups of 15-20 or more people you don't know -- real life workshops and social gatherings are great -- witness your own behavior, watch and learn.
The community is your testing ground, your inspiration and your thriving place.
Community Rule of Thumb: Don't ever follow advice or tactics from anyone you wouldn't want to spend time with at an intimate dinner party. It won't work for you unless they resonate in your heart.
The Secret Sauce: (BYOS)
Here's where your secret weapon comes in -- the magic that gives your wings to take flight, brings everyone to your party, and intoxicates them with love and appreciation. It's your heart and spirit.
This is the part that most of the people online overlook -- certainly the soulless idiots and hucksters, and so many others spouting strategies that just don't resonate. That's why you've gotta work double hard to BRING IT.
Bring Your Own Sauce (BYOS :)). You've gotta feel it in your heart. When the work really starts to flow, and the muse takes over -- you know you've hit your sweet spot, and that's where the secret sauce comes in that brings it all together.
Unfortunately for most of us we're too cluttered in our energy, mind and emotions to even come close to accessing this place in our creative and entrepreneurial work. That's where meditiation, cleansing and extended time out comes in. At some point, you're going to get good enough through practice that your spirit is comes in and takes over, and then it's like pure flow -- you're guided by some kind of merging of high-self intelligence, ingenuity and talent you've honed in through all the work you've done, through submersion in your community, and through your dedication and commitment to your calling.
At this point, trusting the universe, allowing my fears to dissolve into trust, and dreaming the world I envision come into play.
This is where I can be free to let me spirit roam, and let down my guard -- to let the spirit fill me up and make me whole. Healing, trusting, building.
The more I can do this, the better off I'll be, the better I'll feel, and the more opportunities I'll have to successfully turn my great ideas into real income, and a thriving business online.
The secret ingredient is heart and soul -- you've gotta keep heart, soul and spirit at the core every step of the way.
[box]I want to encourage you to start thinking in terms of a basic framework -- and make it your own of course, there is no one way for everyone. There's 3 key ingredients to put in yourself: Ingenuity, Raw Talent and Hustle. They're all held together by the community -- it's the stew that contains what you've put in. But the real secret ingredient that makes it all work is the heart and soul you put in -- your spirit. Then you've got the potential for a truly magic, healing, delicious stew![/box]
Secret Sauce Rule of Thumb: Don't try to feed us a stew you wouldn't want to eat yourself! It just won't fly.
Postscript: My story
I've been writing for a larger audience about my work in pursuit of a better world since 2004 -- starting with a personal email list of about 200-300. Three+ years ago I began consulting and developing websites and online strategy campaigns professionally, and I've helped high-profile clients shape their visions into campaigns bringing in hundreds of thousands of dollars in a matter of months.
I've had my share of successes -- netting large contracts worth thousands and creating courses with tens of thousands of participants -- but so many times when I've been at the verge of really taking off, it's all become just too much and I've backed off. There's something about your greatest work being seen and vetted by tens of thousands of people that can turn you into a wreck -- it takes nerves of steel.
The truth is I've really only started to see the returns I've envisioned on my personal and professional work over the past year or so. I'm nowhere near the dream of doing 'whatever I want, whenever I want to...' but I've also learned to really recognize that I don't need a fancy car, a million-dollar house, or any of that crap. I really just want a simple life of freedom, ease, abundance and personal fulfillment.
So I say -- be patient, do your groundwork and stay in alignment with yourself -- if the work that you're meant to do is in real service, there's no reason you won't be able to accomplish that, and also pull in a good income to support yourself. You may just need to cultivate strength through practice, get out of your own way, and trust in your higher self.
Finally -- keep refining the recipe 'til it tastes super yum 'cause we all gonna want some of that too! :)
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