Vacation was a Bad Idea

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We just came back from vacation and I am not feeling too happy.

That's a fairly normal reaction, I think. Often, people will go away for a week or two and when they come home, they may feel a bit let-down as they return to 'real life". That's not really what it is in my case, though.

I was a bit hesitant to go away. Certainly, I was looking forward to spending some time with my family; we haven't had a vacation together in about 2 years. My younger son, in particular, has been asking my almost every day for the past several months "daddy, would you play with me?" and my answer is always that I cannot because I have work to do.

So, I really wanted to have fun together.

My problem, however, is that I am unemployed. My only income is what I am earning online. It's been that way ever since I lost my job near the end of 2016. I spent several months looking for a new job, but as nothing manifested, I put more and more energy into my online work.

I am very lucky to be earning money online, but it isn't what I expected.

I had hoped that working from home would allow me more time with my family, but in fact, I have much less that when I was working my full-time job. On top of that, I am earning about 25% of my old salary.

I keep thinking as each month goes by that my traffic will pick up, I'll make a sale, something... So far, no dice.

So, going on vacation was not relaxing at all. In fact, it was pretty bloody stressful. My wife insisted that we go away and do something so that the kids could have some memories of having fun with us, but because I don't even earn enough to pay my share of the bills, she paid everything.

My wife paid for the hotel. She paid for the food. She paid for the activities. She paid for the gas on the drive. She paid for the souvenirs. Everything. When my son asked me for a drink because he was thirsty, I had to say no. We had to wait for his mother. When my kids wanted ice cream, I had to say "go ask mommy".

It made me feel completely useless as a father and a husband.

Right now, today, I feel closer than I ever have to succeeding online. I feel like things are about to happen. But I have also felt that way before... I have been telling my wife that "things will get better" for about... 17 years. I'm no longer sure that they will.

I'm not giving up, of course. I can't do that, no matter how much I may want to, and no matter how much it seems like the logical thing to do.

I feel more determined than ever to make this all work out, because I never want my wife to have to pay for everything again. I want to be the one treating her to something nice. I want to be the one to finally say "yes" to my kids....

I'm closer to building some real success than I have ever been, but I am also closer to having everything fall apart than I have ever been...

I know that I can't give up. I just can't. But I no longer know if I can succeed either.

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Recent Comments


It is easy to have self doubt. Especially when you are in the position like yourself is in. I know as a parent, you want to do everything you can for your child. At the same time, children need to understand that we always cant give them the world either. Keep you head up. Things will get better for you in time. Don't give up.


Thank you.
I am hanging in there for now. Fingers crossed for the next couple of months.

Hey there, Buddy.

I really respect how you hold nothing back, Craig. That's truly the mark of an exceptional writer.

I'm neither a spouse nor a parent, so I won't even begin to fully understand all that you wrestled with before, during, and after your vacation.

But here's the thing, Craig: We don't know what tomorrow will bring. We can plan, hope, anticipate and think through, but tomorrow is just a thought. So, despite how you felt about your wife having to pay for everything, look at it as a blessing. One, your wife had the means to do so. Two, your son got his wish.

To doubt is human, but doubt and hope cannot reside in the same "house" at the same time.

Just my thoughts.

Thanks, V.
I just feel drained, though. It's tough to not even be able to afford a *drink* for your kid when they're thirsty, you know?

I'm still pressing on. You know that i won't just give up. I can't. But I find that each month I come a little closer to having my fate decided by someone else when I can't pay my membership here.

Even as I write this, I have "Oh no, your payment failed!" at the top of my screen.

And yeah, I don't really hold anything back, though sometimes I probably should. I hate projecting negativity. At the same time, though, I keep thinking that maybe some day someone will read this, see me at my low point, and then 3 or 4 blogs later read that I am now making $5K per month... That would be worthwhile.

This sometimes feels like a suspense movie, where it's a race against time. I know I can succeed, and am on the verge of doing so, but can I do it in time? (Cue dramatic music)

Anyhow, in regards to the things I post, maybe something like this isn't the best idea, but it helps me clear my head. Some of the things I write may be right, some may be wrong, but I don't think anything is ever dishonest.

Hey Craig, thank you for sharing! It’s an enormous feeling when things tend to lean the wrong direction in our lives, however it’s kicking your mind into gear and that’s a positive and real approach to most things in life. Building your online presence is always a risk but worth the time to keep going. Perhaps your time away not only manifested your ideas but will propel you to a new venture or niche.

Writing is essential with capturing your online audience and so I found AWAI - American Writers & Artists. It took me months to decide on what program they offer that will take my writing to a new level and finally found it...10 week course - Ultimate Accelerated Copywriting Campanion Series, and am greatful for so many reasons! Many of us are great writers within our own niche but this goes above and beyond. There are hundreds of other options.. so if you feel inclined to know more, look into joining the “barefoot writer”. It could enhance much of what you may or may not already know. Just thought I would share this to give you some ideas.

All the best! Carrie

Thanks Carrie. I can certainly check out some of their free resources. I am generally pretty comfortable with my writing at the moment, though we can all certainly improve.

The money that I do make is largely from content writing. I do about 15 to 18 blogs each month for various sites, and that earns me in the $700 to $800 dollar range. If I could double that, I would be quite happy. It still wouldn't equal what I was earning when I worked my last job, but it would be enough to take some of the pressure off.

At any rate, I am pressing on for now.

Nice work! If you can generate that off your existing clients, than you can grow this even more. Barefoot writer is free to join, and of course like many education sites, they will send you endless opportunities. Each one offers various solutions so you can shop the ideas they send you. I joined about 6 months ago and receive many/daily email offers. i.e. How to add more clients or gain clients. You seem to have developed a great foundation, so all the best in moving forward!

H Craig, Take time to spend with your children while they still want your attention! Believe me, it doesn't last long. Don't make the mistake of thinking you'll spend time with them down the road because as they grow into teen years, they no longer want your time and attention very much at all. Show them that they are indeed a priority in your life first and foremost. You'll have plenty of time to spend on your work still. Tap into their imaginations will help expand yours as well. Don't let this valuable time pass you by.

Oh, believe me, I know time flies... My elder son is 15 and that seemed to happen overnight.

I know i need to make time for them, but at the same time, I can't really sleep much less, and if I don't keep working, I may end up being out of their life anyway.

I would love to give your comment a dozen 'Likes'. Everything you say is only too true. And in fact it's only when you build up a good relationship with a child when he is young that he will want your attention at all as a teenager.

Hi Craig, do not get too down. You have done well so far and are going to be more successful, I am sure. As Kyle says there are over 3 billion people on the internet. So I think there are enough people to go around for whatever niche websites we have. By going through the last hurdles, it can only improve. All the best.

Well, as I mentioned, I am not giving up, but I am at the point where I may not be able to continue. The decision may be taken from my hands....

Its not easy I know and yes as you mentioned your not giving up. Whatever happens, I wish you all the best.

Thank you!

Hey Craig,

Focus on one thing at a time. If you say you cannot than you will not. Kindly, Becky

I've been telling myself that i can for a long time... I do believe in the Law of Attraction, but it's getting hard to tell people "oh, I have money and the bills have been paid. It just hasn't manifested yet." The bank doesn't quite believe me.

There is so much competition out there - in my opinion the affiliate marketing scene is completely saturated.
I am making sales every day but even at that - the level of return hardly justifies the level of work I put in.
If you are not making enough, then why not try again to get an offline job and carry on with your online activities on a part time basis? (until it makes you a sufficient level of return)

"Completely saturated"? Hmmm... I don't have the stats to prove it, but I wouldn't agree.

Like Craig, I have been unemployed for a few years, with only 2 side gigs to help with expenses. Although there are plenty of jobs out there - I get emails daily - I wasn't being offered any that paid well enough. I've had my resume critiqued, reviewed, rerevised... you name it, I've done it. After about 5 years of that, I decided, no more! I'd rather struggle, knowing I have the time to dedicate to building something substantial, than take on a 9 to 5 and feel trapped, underpaid, and without the time to develop anything else.

I don't have a husband or children, so I definitely have a "luxury" that Craig doesn't have. It's not a decision that can be made lightly, and from what I know of Craig, his decision is something he has wrestled with for a long time.

Unfortunately, I have been seeking an offline job for over a year. If I could even find a part-time job, I would probably be fine. I make more money online than a number of people I know, but it still comes out to less than the average part-time job.

Craig - You mustn't get discouraged. AND you mustn't forget that the importance of being a great Dad is being there for them, not about what you can buy or pay for. Take more time day to day with them - Go throw a Frisbee with them. You'll come back to your work refreshed and able to meet the challenges with more creativity.

I understand because many times I must depend on my kids to pay rent, to eat, and everything. I have no job because I'm on disability and the government doesn't understand that the little they give me doesn't cover my bills. It makes me feel bad that I must ask for help from them.

Tried and True


Craig, I think the feelings you have are not uncommon. I think it is just before the breaking point to success that we feel the most volatile. It sounds like you have already had some online success, so its good that you are still appreciative of that. And your future success is closer than you know. Keep pushing and soon enough you’ll be exactly where you want to be!

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