Monday, 10 December 2012

And the list goes on


Ah yes, my list.

After a day of procrastination I opened my notepad and took a glance at my To-Do List. I realised it really was just a list, and if I just plodded through the items one by one my tasks would be done. What was there to be concerned about?

So that’s what I did. To refresh your memory, the list is basically a wish list that will get me from where I am now (in debt and not fulfilling my dreams), to where I want to be (a millionaire blogger). First up was discovering out how much a four bedroom house on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland costs. And well, what a surprise that was!

I discovered that a four bedroom, two bathroom house within close vicinity of Maroochydore beach could be snapped up for less than a 1-bedroom unit in Bondi. Gulp. Suddenly my dream became less of a fantasy and more of a potential reality. Right, I really could afford a house on the Sunshine Coast. All I have to do to achieve that is earn a decent wage (for me, the plan is to double last year’s income so let’s say $90-100k by the end of 2013). Sounds doable (as long as I continue crossing things off my list).

Second was to continue writing my blog (tick) and to find out how to build my audience and understand the world of blogging in general. Writing is the easy part, I have plenty of material there, but I know next to nothing about blogs and blogging (never even read one before I started my own), so that research saw me dive onto my MacBook and not even surface for a drink of water before two hours had passed. Wow, there’s soooooo much to know (and read!). To grow my audience it was suggested that I connect with fellow bloggers who are covering a similar subject to mine. By commenting on their posts, their readers would become aware of my blog and with any luck, click through to me and become engrossed in my story.

There are so many blogs out there, I barely knew where to begin, so I went straight to the Top 100. Interesting. Not a single personal development blog in sight. The top spots are held by news, entertainment and political bloggers. It seems the general public are more interested in what’s going on around them than what’s going on inside them. Fair enough. I did manage to find a couple of sites that were relevant in terms of them being for women (I at least fit into that gender graphic), and from there I discovered a few other blogs that interested me, namely itsallaboutyoga.com, gaiam.com and lipsticking.com. There were others with large numbers of visitors, but when it came to posting a comment in order to raise my profile, I felt fraudulent and couldn’t think of anything genuine to say. I realised that becoming a millionaire blogger is my aim, not to lose all morals in the name of wealth and status. Becoming All That I Am is more about how I feel than what I will be able to buy. It was refreshing to know that I maintain 100 per cent integrity even when clambering to the top of the BRW Rich List!

I could easily have spent the entire day checking out blogs and posting about them, but with each bullet point calling, I was happy to have gained some new insights and moved onto the next point at hand: meeting Mike Dooley. Part of my blogging research involved finding his blog, but it seems Mike keeps his thoughts to himself, as all I could find were people blogging about him. A bit like I am! I am aware that Mike runs workshops throughout the year so I have made a note under the heading of “Wouldn’t It Be Great” to attend his Thoughts Become Things training in Orlando next October. It’s doable. All I have to do is keep working, keep earning and keep the end goal in sight.

If Jacqueline Harrison’s book How To Create a Business From Nothing becomes a NY Times bestseller then my goal to edit bestselling books will have been achieved. But point three: how does one attain such a moniker? It seems pretty straightforward. You have to sell a truckload of books. However, bookshops are not the only outlets that are counted. Wholesale sales are also considered, as are ebook sales. I know that sounds obvious but there is a mystery surrounding the NYT bestseller list, and I’m sure there’s more to know. Fortunately I have industry contacts with authors who have enjoyed bestseller status, so I will delve further into this point and gather some inside info.

Writing about all this now, it doesn’t seem like much, but gathering data on these few points actually took me a whole day. The upside of all this work is that I now feel as though I have given myself a “real job”. Instead of knowing in the back of my mind I can do all these things and therefore not actually doing them, (a bit like the way you never go sightseeing in your own city), I’m now putting pen to paper, fingers to keyboard and simply working from a backlist of what I want. And so far it’s been easy. My next move will be getting on the phone and emailing people I know, (or don’t know) and asking questions. Before beginning this process, asking vague acquaintances for information or advice seemed pushy and manipulative. Now, thanks to a succinct list and a future vision that I can share (if I want), contacting people has become simply a quest for knowledge. And who doesn’t want to share their knowledge?

With this new methodology, my energy is coming from a more humble position and seems to be founded on connecting and having a conversation. Previously, that same conversation felt unconsciously loaded with expectation (of what, I didn’t even know). Just talking to someone feels a whole lot easier and more authentic than hoping someone can help me fulfil a dream that I’m not even able to articulate! Now that’s a big ask!

So, with only a few days before I board a flight to South Korea and head off for a month’s holiday, I have plenty of points still to work through. As is becoming clearer every day, this list is about so much more than just a list. It is also unlocking the answers to questions I didn’t even know I was asking. After a few days break in Seoul, I’m departing for the UK where I’ll spend Christmas with my parents. I haven’t spent Christmas with my family for 15 years.

I wonder what they’ll think of my blog? And, more fittingly, I wonder if they’ll approve…?