I cannot believe that I'm sat here today writing a post to celebrate being a WA member for a DECADE! I even have a badge to prove it :-)
To avoid any confusion, you might notice that my profile above states that I’ve been a member since May 2012:
But I actually have 2 profiles here at WA. Here’s my original (and still active) one from when I joined back in November 2006:
I set up this extra profile in 2012 to connect better with anyone who visited my Work From Home Watchdog website.
Although I have 2 WA accounts, this one is my most active profile. I figured it would be best to post this here.
Here’s the link to my original profile if you'd like to take a look:
Okeedokie…I hope that hasn’t confused you too much!
So, 10 years is a LONG time to be a Wealthy Affiliate member. I’m very proud of that fact!
Today I want to take some time to give you an idea of how this amazing community has transformed life for me and my family.
Let me take a step back in time.
Back in 2006, I was in a difficult situation.
I worked on the production line at a local factory making furniture. It wasn’t the worst job in the world, but It definitely wasn't the greatest.
I was stuck in the loop of working every hour possible yet still unable to earn enough to provide for my family.
It was a consequence of my education. I underachieved at school and couldn’t get a well-paid job.
At 36 years old, I was getting close to the point of fully locking in as a 9-5 slave for the rest of my working days. This was a situation that I had to change…for the good of my family.
And so I turned to the Internet…
I made some money, but nowhere near the amounts that the Guru’s were saying was possible.
I was spending ALL my spare time trying to crack the online world. I also had a serious case of ‘S.O.S’ (shiny object syndrome) and was spending more money than I was making. It became a major problem.
Then, somehow, I discovered Wealthy Affiliate.
I can still remember the day I joined. My wife made me promise her that if it didn't work, it would be the last time I spend any money chasing my online dream.
I gave her my word and so my WA journey began.
Looking back over the last decade here at WA, I can think of so many amazing things that have happened.
Here’s a selection of what I consider to be the most memorable events:
Due to my lack of potential in the offline world, I was 100% focused on trying to quit my job when I joined WA.
In a strange way, the fact that I was earning a low wage in my 9-5 job at the time actually made it seem more possible.
But I still had to put in a LOT of effort to make it happen.
I made a conscious decision to forget all about all of the shady ways to make money online. It was time to focus 100% on the WA process.
It took time, considerable effort and determination. But it HAPPENED!
Looking back, this achievement came down to just 2 things:
- Putting my faith in the WA training.
- Taking action on what I had learned.
I guess the keyword here is…”commitment”.
COMMIT to completing the training and COMMIT to actually doing what you learn. Then things start to happen.
And they surely did!
If you'd like to know how setting small goals one step at a time helped me to achieve this, I recently did a brain dump on the topic right here:
I have to admit...this was not a priority on my list of things that I set out to achieve.
I was more focused on trying to be there for my wife and sharing the parental workload.
Yet when I did quit my job, my relationship with my wife and children was completely transformed.
Suddenly, trying to find “quality time” was not a problem.
I got to be a ‘hands-on-stay-at-home’ Dad. It has since become one of the most rewarding and unexpectedly positive consequences of my 10 years here at WA!
Not only did our children benefit, my wife did too.
Her workload around the home decreased. This gave her time to plan and achieve her own personal career goals.
It was a Win/Win/Win situation!
The 9-5 lifestyle didn’t suit me AT ALL.
Or put a better way…the type of job that I was doing created a VERY unhealthy lifestyle for me.
(Another consequence of flopping in school)
Carrying too much stress. Not getting enough sleep. Over-indulging as a way of coping. These were all negative consequences of MY 9-5 setup.
When I quit my job I soon realized I was in a position to start making better life choices.
So I decided to join a gym and bust my gut!
For the first time in years I started to feel great. The stress reduced, I was sleeping better and eating healthier.
Trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle is not easy for any of us. When I worked in the factory it was impossible to address my lifestyle because it was a consequence of my situation.WA helped me to change all that :-)
Back in August 1999, I stood in Gatwick Airport and announced to my wife that I would never get on a plane again. We’d just returned from our sunny honeymoon in Greece.
The reality was, I’d just spent the entire 3 hour flight clinging to my wife like a petrified toddler. Yes, I did return from our honeymoon with white bits…my knuckles!
Me and flying did not get on AT ALL.
Then some years later…WA forced me to face my biggest fear head on!
It all came about a bit by accident…
During my early WA years I made some good progress and started eating away at my financial goals. It gave me the confidence to try something new, so I decided to try my hand at promoting WA.
After a lot of sweat and effort, It worked! I had qualified for an invite from Kyle & Carson to attend the WA Super Affiliate Conference. In Las Vegas…an 11 hour flight away!
This situation was about to shape my future.
I was back in the departure lounge at Gatwick Airport. I was trembling with fear and faced a ‘go left’ or ‘go right’ situation.
(Go left = return home, go right = head to Vegas)
BUT I GOT ON THAT DAMN PLANE!
It might sound a bit strange, but this became one of the most important decisions I have ever made.
Firstly: It forced me to lock horns with my biggest phobia.
Secondly: Attending the Super Affiliate Conference increased my online earnings. It also gave me a wealth of ideas that have gone on to greatly increase the growth of my online business.
I’ve been to the WA Conference a few times since. I’ve also flown to various other locations around the world. My fear of flying no longer exists!
WA empowered me to step on that plane, enrich my life and create a successful future for me and my family :-)
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to attend the WA Conference in 2015 due to family commitments. But if you’d like to know how amazing it is to meet up with Kyle & Carson in Vegas, you can read my post on the 2014 WA Conference right here:
With 10 years worth of my history floating around the community, there's not much more to reveal about me!
But as it's my 10 year anniversary...I'll share a few more secrets :-)
I left school in 1986 and back then computer studies were not on the curriculum. In my final year of school, they introduced this weird looking machine with a small TV attached. It was a ‘BBC Computer’
It was all too complicated for me. I left it for the geeks to decipher and hoped I would one day be able to make more sense of it!
Then in 2005, while I was working in the factory, I realized that computers had a big part to play in the future. So I attended night school 4 nights a week to get myself educated.
I learned the basics of Microsoft Windows and various software programs. I also earned my European Computer Driving License (ECDL).
Armed with my new skills, I purchased my first Windows-based PC and then some months later I joined WA. The rest is history!
Since I started working full time online, I’ve realized that I’m a ‘hit or miss’ kind of guy lol.
My ideas tend to either be ‘out of the park’ ideas or ‘out first ball’ ideas!
I'm working on a more consistent win ratio :-)
You see, I’ve learned that the fails are actually POSITIVE experiences waiting to happen!
Sure they hurt at the time. But when you pick yourself up, learn from the experience and in some way re-purpose your idea(s)…you always seem to create a more positive outcome.
It really is ok to fail.
I've learned to never take failures within your online business personally. You cannot get it right every time.
Failing is actually an integral part of running an online business. No marketer ever became successful without failing at least once.
Do not be frightened to fail.
I want to be honest with you...
It’s tough to run an online business when you have to deal with everything else that's happening in your life.
This is especially true when you first start out. You feel like you need to spread yourself equally between your offline and online life. It's a tough balancing act.
And there’s the stuff that comes along without any warning.
Over the last 10 years there have been MANY times when “life” has had to come before my online business.
Between 2014 and 2015 I took almost 6 months out to provide full time care for my parents. I’ve since had to move them into a nursing home less than half a mile from my home. I get to see them every day.
My wife and I have also provided care and home tutoring for our daughter since 2009. She has a rare form of autism and was unable to cope with mainstream schooling.
I absolutely know for sure that I am not alone in having to deal with the difficult stuff in life.
And I also know that many people here at WA have much bigger problems to deal with.
I guess what I'm trying to put across is...if you build your online business the right way (the WA way), I've discovered it can be quite forgiving if you need to take some time out.
Yes, initially it can take a little bit of time to get things set up. And you have to make a few sacrifices along the way.
But once you get those solid foundations in place, your online business will take some knocking down!
I often wonder how I would have been able to deal with those unexpected life events if I still worked in the factory?
The truth is...it would have been impossible.
That's another reason why I am so thankful for my online career.
A success post without even mentioning money? Impossible! lol
I want to mention a very significant amount of money...$3600.
It's important because that's how much my 10 year WA journey and all those life-changing experiences have cost me!
And I haven't paid that amount in one go like those Guru's demand with their high ticket offers...
My $3600 has been paid on a pay-as-you-go basis over 10 years!
I appreciate that I might well be the only person who can see the true value of what I have spent.
But it is a true reflection of what is realistically possible here at WA.
And it kind of puts this whole making money online industry into perspective :)
Note: $3600 = 10 years x $29.99 per month (I'm locked in at my original joining fee). If you're playing $47 or $49 per month, you can get the same deal with the yearly membership ($357) or even cheaper with the Black Friday deal ($299)
First of all, I want to thank you for reading about my 10 years at WA. I've really enjoyed putting this post together!
I appreciate that it might be difficult for you to relate to my story, especially if you are just starting out or you're in the early stages of building your online business at WA.
If that is the case, I want you to remember and/or be inspired by these important facts about my time here:
- I was never cut out to be a marketer (I was destined to be a minimum wage worker).
- I had a BIG dream (to quit my job and be there for my family).
- I focused solely on what WA teaches.
- I took things one step at a time.
- My success did not happen overnight. It required consistent effort to get there.
- Once it started working, there was no looking (or turning) back.
- I am just a normal guy with no more ability than you. I just TOOK ACTION!
That just about rounds up my 10 years at WA post! I wish you EVERY success on your own WA journey :-)
There's just one more thing to say...