Truly Quirky Me

Living an Alternative Life

Category: Mindset

The Entrepreneur Mindset – Retraining Your Brain

The entrepreneur mindset is often considered to be something you either have or have not got.  Yes some people naturally appear to be more of an entrepreneur than others, but what does that actually mean?

Entrepreneurs are those who use their own initiative to create a profit.

You can see that ‘trait’ in some children when they buy and sell sweets, toys, lemonade etc.  Adults who open a market stall or use a hobby to make money also display that ‘trait’.  Do they all go on to become successful entrepreneurs though? The simple answer is no.  Some do of course.  People like Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Coco Chanel, Mark Zuckerberg and Donald Trump are all on that list.

The other people on the entrepreneur list are those who work from home.  Anyone who has taken the plunge into MLM or internet marketing or blogging are all budding entrepreneurs.  Sadly some will make money doing this and others won’t.

In my humble opinion those who do make money have developed an entrepreneur mindset, while those who don’t make money have not.  It is that straightforward.  Some will argue of course that is it all about luck or being in the right place at the right time.

The Entrepreneur Mindset

With my background in psychology human behaviour fascinates me.  I could quote all sorts of theories here, but the main one argues that we all have a bias in our thought patterns.  That bias means if we succeed at something we believe it to be due to hard work.  If others succeed though it is more due to luck.  In other words we minimise the efforts of others and maximise the efforts of ourselves.

These cognitive bias exist for many reasons and have been thoroughly  researched.  (A few terms to search for are selective perception, cognitive bias, confirmation bias and explanatory attribution should you wish to read more about that).  What is interesting about this though with regard to entrepreneurs is they tend to have less cognitive bias than others.

Entrepreneurs tend to recognise the fact that other people have worked really hard to become successful.  They also recognise that rather than timing being the main reason for success it is due to simply not giving up.  The reason for this difference is because entrepreneurs have learned to question and examine outcomes.

Let me explain that a bit more…

You see the brain is always trying to take short cuts.  It is performing thousands upon thousands of tasks all at once and so it creates shortcuts to help it perform all of these tasks faster.  It is these shortcuts that create cognitive bias.  Entrepreneurs do not let their brain take shortcuts and instead look in detail at the reasons something didn’t work.  They are constantly using ‘failure’ as a means of feedback.  It is a learning curve that allows them to move closer towards success.

In other words, each time an entrepreneur tries something and it doesn’t work they just don’t give up.  They take the information gained from the experience and use it to improve the next attempt.  This is why those considered as entrepreneurs always seem to be working on a plan or a new venture.  It is not about finding ‘the one opportunity’ that works, it is about building skills.

Retraining Your Brain

This is where I get rather excited, because retraining the brain is my thing! Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (or CBT) is all about retraining the brain to think in different ways.  It changes thought patterns that are no longer useful to the individual and helps to establish more helpful ones.  A lot of the time CBT counsellors are working with cognitive bias.  They highlight the assumptions an individual has made and provide evidence that it is an assumption and not a fact.

The idea that luck and timing are what makes people successful are assumptions.  They are the brain taking a shortcut to explain why someone else is successful while you are not.  If you allow your brain to take these shortcuts it is like saying to yourself that there is nothing you can do to improve and you might as well give up.  When you retrain your brain to look at the facts and simply give the situation more thought however, it becomes more likely you will learn something and move forward.

Remove the right place, right time idea and it becomes apparent that everyone has the potential to become successful.  Its quite exciting really isn’t it?

If you have found this post useful or inspiring please feel free to share it with others.  Thanks in advance to those who do share it, I always appreciate your help in reaching a larger audience!

Ellie xx

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What Would I Do Differently? A Personal Learning Curve

Why Ask What Would I Do Differently?

Its very interesting to consider the question What would I do differently? For some people this might seem like a pointless exercise unless I have a time machine. In my opinion however a lot can be learned from reflection.  Not only do I learn something about myself, I can also explain to others why I would have done things in a different way.

The Starting Point

For those who don’t know already I started working from home because I lost my job through ill health. Unfortunately at that point in time I had debts of over £20,000 and I had a mortgage to pay as well. I have to be honest and say I really thought I was going to end up loosing everything.

Now if I did have a time machine I would definitely go back to when I was debt free and I would never lay my hand on a credit card ever…. Its easy to say that now, but most of my debt was due to paying for training or general living costs while at university. I thought I was investing in my future career.

No credit card would mean never trying to follow my dream of becoming qualified as a psychologist and counsellor. I regret the debt but not the experience of that.

For this learning curve exercise I will assume my time machine can only go back to the day I lost my job.

If I Knew Then

Knowing what I know now would mean I certainly would not panic, in fact I would celebrate. As it turns out loosing my job was the best thing that could have happened because it forced me to learn how to work from home for a living. In fact, had I known what an amazing journey that would be I would never have worked for an employer in the first place.

Sadly my time machine is firmly set to that day when I lost my job and had £20,000 worth of debt. From that point on I would do quite a few things differently.

I would manage my debt differently as well as the working from home side of things. Today I want to focus on the earning learning curve experiences, and I will discuss the debt management another time.

The First Opportunity

One of the first work from home opportunities I discovered after loosing my job was Neobux. This paid to click website gave me my first experience of earning money online. I, like so many others, clicked ads, made pennies and promptly came to the conclusion that would never provide me with an income. I just did not understand the potential that I had at my fingertips.

Now, after many years of working online, I do understand the power of being able to make a small amount of money every day. That is the basis of my Zero2earninghero System after all. Had I learned more about how Neobux works I would never have tried the hundreds of other casual earning websites that took so much time and effort.

So that would be the first thing I would do differently. I would spend time learning more about PTC sites and how to use them properly.

Meeting My Needs

Of course back then not only did I not understand the PTC concept, I also needed money to live on. Neobux would not have provided me with a decent income for months or more likely years even with ‘proper’ use. What I could have done though was both.

That would be the second thing I would do differently. I would use both a way to earn for now, and a way to earn for the future.

Too Many Opportunities

In my ‘earning for now’ mode I also made the mistake of trying to join as many different free online earning sites as I could find. I think I had accounts with over 50 sites at one point. Like so many other people who do this I found having so many accounts was just impossible to manage.

More importantly I was also spreading my earning across a lot of sites that had minimum withdrawal limits. I added a little cash here there and everywhere and as a result it took me ages to make any claims.

Thats number three on the list. I would focus on a small number of sites that had low claim levels.

Survival Mode

In my hindsight state I can see that back when I was joining all these online earning sites, the only thing I was thinking about was getting some extra money to buy food and electric. I was in survival mode.

Over the past 6 years or so I have seen that in others many times.

It is like the brain shuts down the ability to think past the next few days or weeks. Perhaps it knows if you don’t sort the next few days or weeks there is no future. There is no point in thinking months and years ahead because you won’t be here to see it.

With my interest in psychology I find that fascinating. However, now I can see it also kept me trapped in a cycle of earning for survival for much longer that I needed to be.

Let me explain that a bit more. The cycle was I made a some money and I spent it on necessities like food. When the money was gone I needed more. The casual earning sites allowed me to make enough money to survive (and pay my debts). Believe me I was really really grateful to have found a way to do this.

Changing Strategies

I spent years doing exactly that; Making a little extra money online to help me pay the bills and buy food. Eventually I did pay off my debts of over £20,000 and then something strange happened.

My brain changed out of survival mode and allowed me to think about the future again. I changed my earning strategy around to building an income over time rather than living for now.

All that time I spent earning for now I could have also been working on the future. I would be a lot further forward now if I had started building an income years before this change.

Ah but you were only making enough money to live on my survival brain keeps trying to remind me…. The future planning brain though knows that I could have started building an income from nothing!

Building Income Mistakes

When my future planning brain did join the party I made several attempts at building an income over time. Oh this is when I made some big mistakes…. or should I say learning curves?

The first one was I started listening to so called experts. People who had made a lot of money by working from home (or so they said). Don’t get me wrong, I did get some good advice from them, but I forgot to listen to myself.

The things I was being told were the usual ones:

  • “This is the next big thing”
  • “You need to join now to be at the top”
  • “You might not be earning much yet, but you will if you keep going”
  • “The money you are paying is an investment in your future”

The things my brain were trying to tell me were:

  • “This sounds good but it is new, so be careful”
  • “I don’t really want to be at the top if it means other people are losing out”
  • “Its ok for you to say keep going, you are making money out of the money I am paying”
  • “I want to invest in my future, but is this the way I want to do it?”

During this experience I did try to help those in my team as much as possible. I even told them not to pay for things if they couldn’t use them (much to the disgust of my upline). It was clear I was not happy making money at the expense of others. I already knew that though so had I listened to myself it would have saved me quite a bit of heartache.

For that reason listen to myself is definitely high on the list of doing things differently.

Passion

Related to listening to myself has to be the ‘do things that you enjoy and beleive in’ thing.

I discovered it was not enough to do something that works when I had no passion for it. I knew how to make sales and was happy enough to sell a product that did get the desired results. Somewhere in that mix though doing that just didn’t float my boat.

I did make sales and a little money with this opportunity so it did work. Deep down though I knew I didn’t really want to be selling things. My passion and motivation comes from being able to help people. The product I was selling did help people, but the price excluded people as well. That simply increased my desire to find something that works for everyone.

Make sure to connect with your passion and motivation therefore is another one for the list.

Chaos

When I finally did come up with something that does work for everyone I found I was so motivated and passionate that I turned into a swirling dervish. I wanted to get everything in place all at once. The ideas were pouring out of me on a daily basis and I simply couldn’t keep up with myself. Not only was I trying to do too much all at once, I was being completely chaotic about it.

A lot of that is realted to my health problems. Some days I can do a lot and others I can do next to nothing. Somehow my survival brain stepped in again and told me to slow down and do less. Very reluctantly I put together a very simple daily routine for my own earning. By doing that I finally saw the progress I had been aiming for all along.

That means, remember to recognise and work within your own limits is next on the do things differently list. That one was extremely powerful for me.

Finally, at this point in time, slowing down and working with a daily routine allowed my future brain to pop up and wave at me again. It said “you can do the daily earning thing now with no problem. Now you just need to use that to do something within your own health limatations”.

The thing I came up with is investing.

Fear

I was quite scared to try investment opportunities before. I guess my experience of debt and not having enough to live on did make me very cautious. When I discovered I could invest as little as £10 though I knew I could cope with that. Even if I tried something and it didn’t work I knew I could make another £10 to try something else.

Guess what? It worked!

Putting all of my ‘learning points’ together has allowed me to focus on doing something I truly believe in. I know it is something I can continue to do on a daily basis. It meets my health demands and limitations and my desires to help others. I have the ability to create a never ending source of those £10’s and I see what works to make more.

Everything has fallen into place….

The last thing on my list of what to do differently is to not be scared to try something that costs a little money.

As long as you are able to cope with loosing a small amount of cash should it not work out there is nothing to be scared of. I have a system where I can replace that investment cash within a few days. Its not a big deal. Investing everything you have in anything that has no guarantees…..now that is something to be scared of!

I hope you have enjoyed this journey of reflection.  Perhaps it has given you some things to think about as well!

If you have found this post useful or inspiring please feel free to share it with others.  Thanks in advance to those who do share it, I always appreciate your help in reaching a larger audience!

Ellie xx

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What is Financial Freedom Anyway?

Today I wrote the words Financial Freedom is so very close….

It felt wonderful, exciting and quite a relief I can tell you! But writing those words made me stop and consider what is financial freedom anyway?

For me personally, financial freedom is firstly being able to generate an income that covers my living costs.  It frees me of the worry that I will have a bill that I can’t pay.  Also financial freedom for me is about being independent from any employer or benefits system.  It is about being self reliant and never being in a position where someone else has the power to devastate my life by removing my income again.

Having total financial freedom is a very powerful place to be!

I have to admit that years ago I thought I had ‘made it’.  I had my own house, a job I loved, a decent income and I was following my dream.  Back then I basically bought whatever I wanted and travelled pretty frequently.  What I didn’t realise was I was living in a house of cards that could come tumbling down at any second.  When it fell I was in total shock and disbelief.

Now I realise everything I thought I had was an illusion.  ‘My’ house was not mine at all – it belonged to the bank.  The job I loved was not mine – it belonged to my employer.  All the things I had bought with my credit card were not mine – they belonged to the credit card company.  It seems obvious now!

Strangely, when I think about it, the notion of independence hardly exists.  Even now, with the ability to make money without a job I know I am at the mercy of others.  How can I earn from making sales if there are no customers? Should the various programs I use close tomorrow where would I be then?  Awareness of this however allows me  to really get as close to financial freedom as is possible.

The irony of it all is to get real financial freedom I need to reduce my bills to zero.  That is not really possible is it? I can take various steps to minimize my bills of course.  My Live on £1 a Day Challenge for example takes me closer to financial freedom than any of my earn more plans do.  Its an interesting thought, right?

It makes me think about other bills I have and ways to reduce them too….

What does financial freedom mean to you?

If you have found this post useful or inspiring please feel free to share it with others.  Thanks in advance to those who do share it, I always appreciate your help in reaching a larger audience!

Ellie xx

 

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My Daily Target Turning Point Towards Success

Today I would like to tell you about my daily target turning point.  I have seen lots of people asking  those who are successful at working from home “What was your turning point”?,  “What made the difference”? or “When did you know you were going to make it big”?

I’m not saying I’ve made it big just yet, but I know I am on the way 😉

The Turning Point

Inevitably there is a turning point where things just seem to change from being a struggle and everything falls into place, but often it is hard to pinpoint.  I think it is tempting for many to relate it to a change of business opportunity.  There is an assumption that if an opportunity is not making money for us that it is a bad opportunity or a scam.  That is certainly not true most of the time.  In my opinion the turning point is often about changing how you work more than the opportunity itself.  Sometimes the two things simply happen at the same time…

For me, the turning point was most definitely related to setting a daily target and developing my daily earning routine.  I have to admit that I found this really difficult.  My health fluctuates day by day and I was trying to work around that for a long time.  I had no routine and my actions were completely inconsistent.  I was working hard on days that I could, and not working at all on the bad days.  It was like playing a constant game of catch up and I wasn’t getting anywhere.

I’m not quite sure how I came up with the idea of creating a daily earning routine.  I just remember thinking it seems counter-intuitive to create a plan based around the minimum I can do every single day.  I stopped pushing myself really hard on the days when I felt able to,  and my focus moved to doing less.  Strangely, from that moment on my earning has practically sky rocketed.

Why Having a Daily Target Makes a Difference

Since my income has increased while doing less I have been rather curious about it.  Its been bouncing around in my brain for ages…. Why has this made such a difference?

There are several things that could explain it:

  • Momentum – As soon as I changed to doing a small amount of work every day I was no longer taking 2 steps forward and 3 steps back. I am constantly moving forward.
  • Psychology – An easy to meet target makes me feel like I don’t need to struggle anymore.
  • Time Saving – I no longer spend lots of time wondering what to do.  I just get on with it.
  • Free Time – My earning routine only takes about 1 hour a day.  This frees my mind to think about what I am doing more.  Its also more enjoyable to have free time to follow other interests.
  • Monitoring – Its very easy for me to monitor my progress now I have a daily target.
  • Control – I am completely in control of my targets and my activities.  I am no longer at the mercy of ‘earning what I can manage’.  I know exactly what I am doing and what I need to do to increase my income.

How to Create A Daily Target

As I said already I personally found it very difficult to create a daily target due to my health.  For a long time I thought I needed to follow the fluctuations in health and ability by ‘working’ when I was able to.  Instead of doing this I wanted to focus on Small Consistent Action because from past experience I already knew that helps with progress.  In my opinion many people who work from home have this same issue due to working around family demands, other jobs, and even motivational issues.  To create a target you can do daily I suggest you:

Start Small

When creating my own daily  target and routine to help me achieve it I had to start really small.  For this to be successful I had to literally start with just doing one very easy thing.  I knew I could manage to do the ad clicks on one site even on my worst health days.

Be Realistic

This is the one that I struggled with the most.  Being realistic about what I could achieve on my worst days was difficult to accept.  I kept trying to do too much before I guess because I didn’t want to accept my limitations.  This is were the mind flip into what was counter intuitive made the most difference though.  Instead of trying to figure out the maximum I could do on a bad day I asked myself “Can I realistically do ____  on my worst health day?” The first question for me was about doing some ad clicks and the answer was yes, so I started to do that.  I did it every day without fail after that.

Acknowledge Achievement

Regardless of the size of the target when you reach it acknowledge that you have met it.  Tell yourself well done, or give yourself a treat.  Avoid any form of undermining what you have achieved – In other words do not say things like “well anyone could do that” or “that was pointless as I only made —-“.  The point is you set a target and you achieved what you set out to do.  This is very important from a psychological perspective as acknowledgement will help increase motivation.  Undermining achievement will decrease motivation.

Review the Target Weekly

At the end of each week I checked that I had been able to accomplish my target each day.  If I had indeed met it I thought about how easy it had been.  If I found it very easy then it was time to add a little more.  If I found I struggled a bit but still reached target I kept it the same.  If I didn’t achieve target I had to ask myself why? Was it my health? Was it other things taking priority? Could I try again with that target or was it really too difficult for me?

Increase Slowly

The main thing about increasing the target is you shouldn’t really notice any increase in activity.  If your current target is to ‘work’ for 10 mins per day then go up to 11 mins.  If your current target is to click on 10 ads per day then go up to 12 per day.  Alternatively add another small task to your routine.  Instead of doing 1 survey, do 1 survey and a search.  The slower you increase the target the less likely you are to fall back.

Ignore Misses until Review Day

Perhaps the most important thing if you should miss a day is to completely ignore the miss.  Next day continue with the routine as normal.  Only spend time thinking about any misses on the day you review how things are going.  Then you can take appropriate action to change the target if you need to.

 

If you have found this post useful please feel free to share it with others.  Thanks in advance to those who do share it, I always appreciate your help in reaching a larger audience!

Ellie xx

 

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The Only No Fail Strategy Needed

What is a no fail strategy? In my opinion it is one that helps you avoid failure.

As a mental health patient and counsellor there can be no other strategy that holds so much importance.  From a work from home perspective it is the one strategy I think 99% of people need to learn.

It is the ability to start again….

It is simple but for many people it is not easy!

Its been over a month since I last published a blog post as many of you will have noticed.  What can I say? Sometimes life just gets in the way of the best laid plans! When it does it can be really hard to get back on track with your earning routine, or whatever else has fallen to the way side while life happens.  However the ability to start again when life inevitably does its thing is the only thing that distinguishes between those who are successful and those who are not.

I’ve been asked many times how I manage to keep going with my online earning when I have many health issues to contend with.  I must admit I struggled to answer this in any detail before, today though, as I tried to come up with a blog post to write it became clear that I just know how to start again.

It would be very easy for me to ‘admit defeat’ today and let everything I have achieved so far slide into oblivion.  I could keep putting off writing another blog post for another day, and another day until it feels impossible to write again.  The same goes for my earning routine.  I could just allow it to disappear completely and tell myself that is another option that failed.

The fact is it only becomes a failure if I don’t pick myself up, brush myself off and tell myself today is the day I start working on it all again.

Something Old or Something New? 

As I ponder where to begin again I realise I have 2 main options to choose from.  I can go back to what I was doing before, or I can look at something new.  It would be quite easy to start something different now if I really want to, but doing that would suggest I was doing something wrong before.  I could chose to blame the options I was working on before but another light goes on in my head as I think about that.  How many times have I made progress and then started something new simply because life got in the way?  Where would I be now if I had continued with my initial opportunity?   I’m sure I’m not the only one to get in my own way of making progress by doing this.

Don’t get me wrong, it is certainly worth considering something new if you really have not got anywhere with a particular option.  Remember though that you are throwing away learning and time spent already when you do opt for something new so do think about it carefully:

Have you really made no progress? If so why not?

Are you taking the easier choice by starting something new?  If so why are you doing that?

Is the option you tried before really not working for you? Did you give it a good chance to work?

Are you avoiding taking personal responsibility for it not working?

Have you tried different strategies to make it work for you?

Are you being drawn in to something else by ‘shiny ball syndrome’? In other words seeing or thinking of that next new idea (the shiny ball) is going to be THE ONE.

Do others have success with it? If so what are they doing differently to you?

All of these questions will help you to decide if you really should start afresh with a new opportunity.  Me, I’m going back to My Personal Plan to Earn £2500 per Month Online  as I know I was making good progress with it, so I will go back to that and work the plan once again.

Where to Start? 

Its hard to pick up where you left off with something.  Chances are you have lost the momentum you had before so you will need to build that up again.  Going back a few steps in your process can really help refresh your memory and spur you on again.  For me it usually just takes going back over the plan I wrote to see where I am with things.

A Personal Snapshot

Thankfully I have managed to keep a few things ticking along while I have been moving house and sorting the 101 other things that distracted me from my online earning.  It is due to having a very basic minimum daily earning routine in place for bad health days that has allowed me to keep doing something.  This minimum routine works really well for me and I would highly recommend that for anyone with health issues to contend with.  Instead of starting from scratch this minimum daily routine keeps part of my income building up slowly but surely.  Now I just need to start adding things from my plan into my routine again and I’m back on track.

For those interested in my progress with certain sites etc, the current levels are:

Future Net – Just hit 45 x $50 ad packs.  I will keep purchasing more now until I hit my overall target of 50 packs as that should take around 10-12 days.  After that I will be maintaining this level while making a monthly withdrawal of around $500.

Grandbux – I now have 250 rented referrals and am earning around $2 per day.   I am saving earnings towards another upgrade.

USI Tech – I purchased my first pack 20th June on this site and current balance is 0.0099 BTC (around £38 or 41 Euro with todays conversion rates).  I will soon be able to purchase the next 50 Euro pack directly from earnings.

btclicks – 1.30000 mBTC in purchase balance and 0.08645 in regular balance.  Another couple of days and I will be able to pay for my double income upgrade directly from my earnings.

These are pretty much the only sites I have kept ticking over.  During August I also claimed $5 from Gifthulk and £20 from Swagbucks.

Plan for September

  • Continue with sites above.
  • I am booked in for a car boot sale already and need to sort stock to sell at it.  I will also focus on personal sales.
  • Work on daily survey earnings again to raise funds for investing.

I’m leaving it at this to help me slowly get back into a routine of doing a bit more.

If you have found this post useful please feel free to share it with others.  Thanks in advance to those who do share it, I always appreciate your help in reaching a larger audience!

Ellie xx

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How to Get Back on Track

 

Knowing how to get back on track when working from home is a very important skill to learn. It is very easy to get off track. It could be due to not having clear goals in the first place, not sticking to the plan, loss of motivation, health problems, life getting in the way of what you want to achieve, or getting distracted by the next ‘sure thing’. There are hundreds of things that can get us off track really.

Personally I feel like I have gone off track and lost my own focus recently. I want to get back on track as soon as possible. The first part of that is to write this blog post….I’ve been putting off writing you see 😉

Regardless of what has caused you to get off track the following steps will help you to get back on track.

Don’t Put it Off

The first thing to remember is the sooner you start working towards your goals again the better. You do not need to analyse what happened, you do not need to chastise yourself. These things simply make it take longer for you to get back on track again.

If you know you have gone off track then do something about that straight away. The longer you wait the more difficult it will become.

I’m doing this today by writing this post.

Remind Yourself About Your Goals

One of the main reasons I like to actually write down my goals and my plans is because it is very easy to read over them again. Just doing this can sometimes be enough to re-motivate myself. Sometimes it takes a bit more effort than that. It certainly helps to be able to read over what you wanted to achieve and the plans you put in place before though.

My own goal is to earn £2500 per month.

Check Relevance

If it has been some time since you developed your goals and plans it is important that you check they are still relevant to you. Sometimes we go off track because the original goals were not as important to you as you thought. This can happen a lot when you try to take on the goals of others.

I am happy my goal is still relevant.

Start With A Clean Sheet

This is perhaps one of the most difficult things to do. It is about putting everything that happened before to one side and starting afresh. Personally I literally like to start with a clean sheet of paper in front of me. I write my goal at the top and work from there again. It can be helpful to give yourself a start date such as Monday morning, or 1st day of the month etc. Do be aware of using this technique as a form of procrastination however. Is there any reason you can’t start today?

I am at this point now. I will open my planning book and start to write as soon as I publish this post.

Write A New Action Plan

Although you may already have a clear action plan related to your goals it is often useful to actually write a new plan. It doesn’t have to be very different to the original, but it can be. To do this I analyse my goal again. Is it specific enough? How will I know when I have achieved it? Is it something I can actually achieve? Do I need extra resources to help me? Is the goal too large to work on all at once? Can I reduce it down into smaller steps?

I will share my new action plan with you tomorrow

Review What Happened

Without spending too much time analysing what did happen to get you off track I suggest writing a short note about it. Was it health? Did you get distracted? Did you lose motivation? Once you know what it was try to think about what could help you to avoid that problem again.  Write that on your plan.

I will include this in my action plan post tomorrow

I hope you have found this post useful, if you have feel free to share it with others. Thanks in advance if you do share it. I always appreciate your help you reach a larger audience.

Ellie xx

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Productivity Tips to Prevent and Reduce Overwhelm

Productivity tips are not just useful for getting more done, they can also help you to reduce overwhelm in your work from home business.

Overwhelm is not just common for those who work from home, it is common in any kind of business.  The feeling that you are literally unable to breathe because you are buried under such a large mountain of work to do is very unpleasant.  It also causes us to become more and more unproductive.

Especially when you are responsible for every role in your business it can be difficult to prioritise and avoid headless chicken syndrome.  There are some simple steps you can take however to help you achieve more in less time:

Identify Your Goals

The first step is to stop doing everything and take time out to think about your goals.  This can be a goal for the day, the week, the month or even your overall goals.  It is best to make sure that those goals are SMART.  This means they are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time constrained.  You can read more about SMART goal setting in my post Getting Started and Developing a Plan

The more specific your goals are the better.  For example rather than having a goal to ‘make more money’ identify exactly how much money that means.

Develop Your Action Plan

Breaking your goals down into small tasks allows you to develop an action plan that relate to your goal.  Again it is important that the plan is SMART. In other words do not plan to ‘spend some time on marketing’.  Instead plan to spend 1 hour promoting product A to target group C via the 3 social media channels Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Use Time limited Sessions

It can seem counter-intuitive to give yourself a short time limit to work on something when it feels like you have a huge amount to do.  Research shows however that short ‘blasts’ of work such as The Hour of Power increases focus and productivity.  One of the most difficult things about this is to actually stick to the time limit.  I advise setting an alarm and get up and walk away when it goes off.

It is also very useful to schedule time into a dairy.

What Works?

The 20/80 rule suggests that results come from 20% of our activity.  Pay attention to what you are doing and the results.  Aim to discover the 20% of activity that actually gains results relating to your goal.  The other 80% of things may also be important, however when you know what works you can do that first.

Create a Daily Routine

Since I created my own daily routine I have achieved more, earned more,  and wasted less time.  In addition I now have much more time available to do the other things I want to.  It has provided freedom from overwhelm and allowed me to move forward in my business while actually doing less.

I hope you have enjoyed this post and found it useful, do feel free to share it.  Thanks in advance to those who do share, I always appreciate your help in reaching new people 🙂 

Ellie xx

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Improve Productivity With The Hour of Power

productivity

 

If you would like to improve your productivity the hour of power is a simple tip that can make a big difference.  I use this strategy a lot myself.  It is probably the number 1 reason that I get results now with my own work from home activities to be honest.

Let me ask you something….

How many times have you got to the end of the day feeling like you have been really really busy but not achieved very much?

I used to feel like this almost on a daily basis.  Those were my headless chicken days.  I was just running around all over the place, hardly the finding time to stop and see that I wasn’t getting anywhere.  Thankfully my health problems meant I was forced to stop and change what I was doing.

I have to admit that my various health conditions can really impact on my ability to plan and focus on anything.  That combined with low motivation means it is vital that I work in small chunks of time.  What I discovered from that though is just how effective it can be.

Especially when you are working from home it is often the case that there is no real clear schedule to work to.  You might need to work around a lot of other things too.  Home life and caring for children frequently takes priority over work related tasks right? Yet it can also feel like you are constantly working and getting no where fast.  The hour of power can really turn that around.

How to Start with the Hour of Power

For the hour of power to work properly it is important that you have identified a specific goal to work on.  Would you like to earn more? Make more sales? Recruit more team members etc etc.  Take a few minutes to really think about what you want to achieve.  Once you have a clear goal in mind I advise writing it down.  I also advise writing down a list of activities that you think will help you to achieve that goal.  For an example of how I have done that you can read my plan to make more sales post.

Once you have identified the activities to help you achieve your goal you have a few options.  You can spend 1 hour on 1 of those activities or a few of them.

My Suggestions

  1. Make sure you have a very clear goal in mind.
  2. Use some kind of a timer/alarm to help you monitor the time spent working.
  3. Stick to the 1 hour time limit.
  4. Don’t try to do too many activities at once – focus on 1 or 2 if you can.
  5. Try to use the hour of power daily.
  6. If you can, give yourself a specific time to have your hour of power.
  7. Turn off social media if that is not part of your activity.
  8. Tell others you are not available during this hour, unless it is an emergency.
  9. Repeat the same activities daily for a week or a month etc.
  10. Monitor your results.

If you can’t set aside 1 full hour to focus on your activity without stopping you can divide it up into smaller chunks of time.  If you do this I do advise you still spend 1 hour doing the activities.  For example if you can only find 10 mins here and there in the day count them up so you have 1 hour in total.

What are your productivity tips? I would love to hear them!

If you enjoyed this post, I would greatly appreciate it if you commented below and shared on Facebook etc 🙂 What are your productivity tips? 

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If you don’t ask you don’t get…

Sometimes it pays to ask.  I have heard that a lot in my life I must admit, but its not always easy to ask is it? Other times its just a habit not to ask.  Today I really thought about the saying “if you don’t ask you don’t get” and would like to share why it’s on my mind.

Things just haven’t exactly gone to plan this week.  You know those times when no matter what you do its always just a little more complicated than it should be? Well this week its been a bit like that for me.    When that also seemed to have infected my online earning activities I decided I just wasn’t going to let it pass.

It wasn’t really anything major. I just didn’t get credited for some offers I had taken up, which happens quite often.  Usually I just let them pass with the aw well its just one of those things attitude.  Not today lol, my frustration with things not working as they should was quite high and I decided to do something about it…..

Offer 1

First of all i received an email from Amazon with this great offer to spend £20 and get £5 free:

amazon offer

As I am currently working on building up some Amazon vouchers to buy a few things I thought great, I can add another £5 to it this way.  When I clicked the qualify button though I got this message: Sorry, you are not eligible for this promotion. You can still purchase Amazon Gift Cards.  🙁

I was not a happy bunny.

I checked the requirements and I knew I was eligible, so I contacted support.  After chatting a little and sending them some info they decided to credit my account with £5 as a good will gesture.  I didn’t even have to buy the gift cards to get it! Result I thought 🙂 That was worth asking about.

Offer 2

Then, spurred on a little from that success I decided I was going to check up on something else.  I had referred a friend to Shop and Scan and I was supposed to have been awarded 500 points for that.  It hadn’t shown up on my account so I dropped them an email. Hey presto  500 points now have been added.  🙂 result number 2 = £10 better off than I was.

More Offers

Now i’m thinking about a few other offers I completed on Swagbucks.  I didn’t get credited for several of those either this week.  Guess what I’ve done? Yep dropped them an email.  I haven’t heard back yet from that one so fingers crossed for result number 3!

Have you ever had this happen? It makes me wonder about the amount of money companies save by not crediting offers as they are advertised.  Maybe we should all start to email a bit more often and ask them keep their promises 😉

Have you enjoyed reading about this? I would love to hear more about your opinions and experiences of asking for a promised reward.

 

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