Are you tired of your current job? Do you see ads everywhere about making money online and working from home? Are you tempted by the prospects of making money online? Alright, let’s be honest here. Everybody wants to make money online. We all want to be able to make money from home. But before you get carried away and quit your day job to start earning a living from the internet, let’s kill some myths about making money online:
1. A job is a job. Just because you work online, it doesn’t mean that you have less or easier work. You still have to work. You still have to get stuff done. If you want to work online to pursue work that you’re more passionate about or to find more fulfilling work, then that’s awesome. You can start a blog on a topic that you’re enthusiastic about or pursue any of the other various online opportunities that can make you money online. Just don’t expect to work less or to lay on the beach all day, especially right off the get-go.
2. Don’t be brainwashed by the words “guaranteed” and “lots of money.” For some reason, these two terms are synonymous with the world of making money online. Why? It’s because of all of the online success stories. People like to think of John Chow and Darren Rowse when it comes to online business ideas. This survivorship bias leads to people overlooking the countless numbers of people that have failed at making money online, and makes people forget about the long work hours that go into making even a few dollars online. It’s simply much easier to only think about these success stories and the big bucks they make. Unfortunately, you’ll never be guaranteed lots of money in real life, and especially not from the internet. The only guarantee is plenty of hard work.
Okay, so now you understand that making money online isn’t easy and that lots of people fail. There’s just two more mega-important issues left:
3. Productivity and time management. The structure of a typical job allows us to be fairly productive because we likely won’t get paid if we don’t work and we have a boss to keep us in line. On the flip side, working from your computer requires intense focus. It requires the ability to turn off Facebook and Twitter to focus on getting work done. Do you genuinely feel that you can block off all of the distractions and be productive from your home while working online? The reality is that most of us can’t. There’s no point in lying to yourself in order to create false hope. If you’re the type of person that gets distracted easily, then working remotely won’t pan out for you.
Also, if you do have the discipline to stay focused and get your work done, don’t forget that working from home means you can never truly escape your work. Your office is your home, and you might feel obliged to be working 24/7. If you take the leap into the online world, you need to try your best to maintain a healthy work-life balance.
4. You are the boss. Can you handle being your own boss? By being your own boss, I mean that you’re responsible for taking care of your own taxes, health plan, vacation, work hours, sick leave, and delegation of tasks (if you work with someone else). Most of us don’t like to deal with these issues. You could ideally outsource all of these tasks, but that will once again dip into your profits and most likely won’t be an option when you start out.
I hope I didn’t scare you guys about making money online or in general about starting your own business. I’m a ruthlessly realistic person. I just wanted to instill some honesty in a subject that has been glorified to death. With that being said, if you happen to be someone who has attempted an online business and either succeeded or failed (or perhaps done both), is there anything that you’d like to add to the discussion? Readers, do you have any specific questions that you’d like answered on the topic?
(photo credit: mathowie)