Archive for September, 2008

Goals, What are Yours?

I was thinking about one of the posts I wrote a couple of days ago Top Tips For Time Management.  It is all very well to write a to do list if you know what it is what you want to do and am committed to your goal.

One of the problems for lots of us is to know exactly what it is we want.  That got me to searching through my PC files.  Here is a free download (goals) that you may find useful in sorting out what it is you really want.

Let me know if it helps.

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Top Tip For Time Management

So much to do so little time……..

This is a common problem.  There is just too much work left at the end of the day.  One way to try to solve this problem is to stay up later, get up earlier, drink lots of coffee. Another is just to give up “working from home is just too hard” and to go back to a life of non-ending 9 – 5 drudgery.

It is important to recognise the enormity of what you (and I) are doing. We have started on the path of leaving a ‘proper’ job in search of something better.  The trouble is that unless you are very lucky and money comes flooding in from day 1 the hardest part of the journey is the start, the transition from being a wage slave to being self employed and doing something you like. There is the stress of working 2 jobs, the job you are employed to do and the job you want to do. Probably, those around you do not quite understand why you are giving up your leisure time to sit in front of a PC rather than spending time with them. Inevitably, the first few months will be hard.

Here is my one top tip to help.

Write a ‘To Do’ list and then work the list. If I have time to do only one thing for my business today then I want that to be the most important thing to push the business forward. With a prioritised to do list I can start at the top and work down, no more scatter gun approach, no more running around like a headless chicken.

Each night I sit in front of the TV and write my list. I sit down with today’s list, review what I have done, what I should have done, what I could have done better. I then write tomorow’s list.

There is one unexpected and great benefit. The first few lists were huge, or would have been if I had written them. I always worried that some of the important things were being missed. I woke during the night thinking about what I would do the next morning. Then there was the ‘I know that there is something else I should be doing’ feeling the next day. That is now gone. If it is not on my list it does not get done, it may be added to tomorow’s list but today’s issue is to complete today’s list.

The list has to be prioritised. There are 4 categories;

  1. Important and urgent.
  2. Important but not urgent
  3. Urgent but not important
  4. Not urgent and not important

Having a system like this will make you focus on the important things.  It will save dithering time.  It will help you schedule (when will that important but not urgent item become urgent?  I will do it then).

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I am so tired……….

You know what?  I have been subscribing to many (many, many) newsletters on your behalf.  What I mean is that if I subscribe to them you do not have to, because I can tell you which are really useful.

Each day brings some 170 emails from the newsletters……

This is a problem as I read them all.  Most are saying the same thing “buy from me and I will make you a milliionaire overnight”.  Call me a sceptic but if I was a millionaire would I be telling Joe Soap how I did it?  Nah, I would be living in India (I LOVE India, the people are wonderful and they are so positive about EVERYTHING)   So, why are these people sharing their secrets with me for just $49 or $497 or $1497? 

It is either greed or a scam.   It must be greed,  I do not want to be sued…..

There are however some things that are free and some things that are value for the price.  I have subcribed to Jim Cockrum’s newsletter for more than 2 years.  It is free but worth so much more.  Thanks to Jim I am a power seller onj eBay.  The reviews of his e-book  The Silent Sales Machine are all positive, as they should be. 

Sign up for Jim’s newsletter here.

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Keep on Keeping On

Starting a home business is very exiting, you think that you will be living a life of luxury by this time next year. The truth is different, it takes hard work, there will be knocks and setbacks. There will also be great highs. I remember making my first sale on ebay, my first sale on Amazon, the day that a book I paid £7.50 for sold for £140!

There are some things that you can do to make the process easier.

1. Remember why you are doing what you are doing. What is your long term goal? Is that goal still relevant, if not re-assess and start with a new goal.
2. Stay focused on doing your job, set time aside to surf the net but when you are working in your office do just that, work.  If it does not add to your business you are not working you are just pretending to work.
3. Create a schedule. How long will you spend on your business during the week, and when? Stick to your schedule. Weekdays I get into the office at 6 am. I spend an hour looking at the emails, printing off labels to post my goods that have sold through eBay and Amazon. From 7.00 until 8.00 I work on this blog and my other sites. At 8.00 I spend some time with Jane while she gets ready to go to work. At 9.00 I start studying for an exam I am taking in December. At 11.00 I wrap all my parcels (an average of 10 a day). At 12.00 I go to my proper job at 21.30 I come home and check my emails. Saturdays I do the weekly shop and check out some charity shops. Sunday I visit boot sales for more books and spend a couple of hours listing what I have bought. (Put like that it does not seem like much of a life, but having a schedule is vital. It also forces you to make the most of the time you do have with your familly).
5. Review what you are spending your time on. I used to spend a lot of time on eBay now I don’t. I do not need to, basically apart from my listing days, Thursday, all I do with eBay is to order more Zippos from my wholesaler and post the sales.

The best advise I can give you is to stay focused and to keep on keeping on.

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This Time Next Year

I’ll be a Millionaire, perhaps…… Most of us want to make money.  Making money on the internet, some nice little internet business or online enterprise that you could run for a couple of hours a day while sipping on a long cold drink on a long hot beach would fit the bill nicely.  This blog is the diary of my attempts to make money online.  It will mention some online opportunities, and point out some genuine, and not so genuine money making ideas.  A bit of background.  I am in my 50s, live in the U.K. with a wonderful partner (Jane).  I have a deadend job.  I make money selling on eBay and selling on Amazon.  I do not make enough to give up my ‘proper’ job, but it all helps.  I would like to make more money online.  Join me on this journey, read my notes, tell me your stories, learn from my mistakes, let’s grow together.

Phil

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