This week was a momentous occasion. After years of working in the traditional workforce, I left my job and went full-time with the business I had created just three months ago.
My thoughts on the matter? Well . . . I'm honestly surprised it took so long.
I don't mean that to sound arrogant or prideful, and I don't want you to think that this blog is the only thing I'm talking about here. I could've went full-time with many blogs I created in the past.
It took a long time for me to go full-time with my businesses in the past because quite frankly, I overcomplicated everything.
I placed layer after layer of excuses between my dream and me. And while some excuses were valid, many weren't.
So now as I finally took the leap to go full-time with my blog, I reflect on some of the bad excuses that kept me stuck in the past.
Maybe you too struggle with many worries and fears circulating around the decision to take your blog seriously. But the problem is, you don't know the difference between a bad excuse and a good reason. Therefore, you take every worry and fear seriously.
In reflecting back on my bad excuses, my hope is that you'll be able to distinguish the essential from the non-essential when it comes to turning your blog into an awesome business.
Here's the list of every bad excuse that kept me from taking my dream seriously:
1. There are too many teachers out there.
Here's a fact: to grow your blog into something sustainable in revenue, you need to adopt a teaching perspective. No one blogs about their puppies and rainbows, and sells so many products that they're filthy rich.
Successful and profitable entrepreneurs have a teaching perspective.
If you're blogging about random things happening in your life and you expect to turn your ramblings into a sustainable profit, stop. All the best bloggers are teachers. You have to teach everything you know if you want to make a difference with your blog.
My problem was, I was too busy looking around at all the other teachers to notice what unique teaching I could contribute.
It's anatomically proven that if you turn your body just a little bit in races to see where your competition is at, you'll slow down. Same applies to business.
Stop letting what everyone else is doing slow you down in business.
Yes, it's good to see what others are teaching, but the moment you let their teaching intimidate you is the moment you fail in business. Competition should inspire and motivate you.
So if all the teachers out there are scaring you, know that you have something unique you can teach. And it's up to you to find it.
2. Don't have enough email subscribers.
I used to think that the only thing that stood in the way between me and these other successful teachers/bloggers out there was the size of our email list. It seemed like these influential bloggers could never fail because all they had to do to make money was send an email.
Meanwhile, my email lists were nothing to be amazed at.
So I always placed a goal for how many subscribers I would need to turn my blog into a business.
I said I wouldn't monetize my blog until I hit 1,000 subscribers.
And then when I hit 1,000 subscribers, I said I wouldn't monetize until I hit 2,000.
And then when I hit 2,000 subscribers, I said I wouldn't monetize until I hit 3,000.
And then when I hit 3,000 . . .
You get the point.
But then, when I decided to grow my email list from scratch, I looked around and saw many of my friends monetizing small email lists. Some were smaller than 100 and they were making 5x more than I was.
Truth is, as long as you are building a highly focused and targeted list, it doesn't matter how many subscribers you have.
Again, it's all about finding your unique flavor. If you can find your profitable niche, and execute it with awesomeness, then you can easily monetize your small email list.
So fight this excuse that you need more email subscribers. Yes, you can make more money with more email subscribers, but you don't need 1,000 or 10,000 subscribers if you want to go full-time.
PRO tip: focus on being focused.
Meaning, build a quality and highly targeted email list. Then you don't need as many subscribers to go full-time with your business.
3. A signature product takes too long to make.
Every awesome blogger has a signature product they are known for, the product they charge premium rates for. I used to look at these signature products with my jaw wide open, thinking, "it would take me months to make that!"
If you're trying to make your blog work on top of a full-time job and other responsibilities, you know time is against you. You don't have much of it.
And yet, when I was looking around at all these awesome profitable bloggers, it seemed like their blog was the only thing they were doing.
All this to say, I thought I could NEVER make a signature product.
Maybe, you feel the same way. You don't have several months to set aside for building your signature product.
But then, a conversation with my business coach changed the way I thought about building products.
My business coach outlined a program and sold it before it was complete. Each module of the program would drip out to his buyers each week, and he would spend each week creating another module of the program.
In other words, he created the program while he was going along.
This taught me that I didn't need to have a polished and finished product ready to go before I could start selling.
If the thought of spending lots on time on a signature product scares you, stop. Build a product that works well with what you're comfortable with. If you're comfortable with building a product as you go along, go for it! If you're comfortable with completing a product before you sell it, go for it!
Your signature product is yours, which means, it's up to you how you want to create and sell it.
4. I can't build a community.
Again, I looked around at all the other influential bloggers out there, and got intimidated by the size of their communities. They had large Facebook groups itching to hear more from them. I thought I could never build this type of close-knit community.
But then I took a closer look at what these bloggers were doing, and it surprised me.
The communities they were growing were built around their personalities. In other words, the more they shared of themselves, the more they gather like-minded individuals.
This taught me, again, that all I needed to do to build a community was be true to who I am and what I care about.
And also, in the same way you don't need a large list for a profitable business, you don't need a large community to be successful. You can have a small, intimate community, and still benefit.
But the best community-building tactic I know is to form the atmosphere of the community around your personality. Find your unique flavor, and let it attract the people you want to hang with.
5. I can't risk it.
This was the main excuse that held me back for years. Really, I was just scared to invest my time in something I wasn't positive would work out. I instead spent many years ignoring my passion and investing time in a predictable career path.
For the longest time, I thought entrepreneurship was too scary and too risky.
But then I noticed the economy and the current job market. That's right. I actually took a look around at the job market. What I saw was even scarier.
My friends who had jobs for several years were all of a sudden getting laid off. They were thrown back into the wolves where they struggled to find jobs in a shrinking job market.
To me, it almost seemed riskier to not have another revenue stream you could fall back on.
Here's the thing about turning your blog into a business: your blog is yours. It'll grow based on the investment you put into it. And it'll never fire you. It is yours to grow and make money with whenever.
I used to view my blog as a risky investment. But with today's changing job market, I see it as a necessary investment.
The time has come for us to stop treating our dreams and passions as the enemy. Take them seriously and build a business that is yours. It's the only security you have with a job market that's in flux.
Stop fearing your dreams. Make them profitable instead.
I believe work and life should be simple. There's no need to overcomplicate turning your blog into a business you love.
In fact, you can follow a guaranteed and simple path to make your blog a business in the next 30 days.
Here's the deal: I created a brief email course called the "Blog to Business Jumpstart." The whole goal of it is to get you to stop overcomplicating the process and to help you make a profit from your blog in the next few days.
Click here to take the free "Blog to Business Jumpstart" Course.
You don't have to let excuses intimidate you to follow a traditional business path. Instead, give them a close look. See what's valid and what's not. And hopefully by now you see that most of your excuses are invalid fears that aren't worth listening to.
Take your passion seriously and build a business you love. Stop letting excuses get in the way.
This article was originally published on EssentialHustle.com.