This Business Gives You A Lot Of Lifestyle Control

Last Update: June 23, 2021

It's been a while since I posted here in WA. My life has been crazy in 2021. First off, we had a baby in January. During a pandemic. That was a crazy couple of months. Then just as the baby started to get a little older and able to do more stuff, we had a bad car accident and I broke my hand. I needed surgery, and it took about a month to really get good function back to my hand where I could actually sit down and work.

Now it's June 2021. It's been a full six months since I've really dedicated more than an hour per day to running my business.

The good news is that everything is still running fine. I designed my business to be this resiliant.

10 Years In The Making

I've worked very consistently for the past 10 years even though I didn't "have to". Once my websites were making money, I saw the potential for bigger goals to be achieved and then when I hit those goals, I made new ones and so on. Early on, I identified issues with my business, made changes, and worked towards making the most resiliant online business as possible.

One of the early mistakes I realized is that I was running too many websites and it was impossible to keep up the work load as a single writer. I did some outsourcing at that point, but not well, and was still in the mode of "I have to do it myself to get it done right". So I whittled down my site portfolio from 60 micro sites to just 3 bigger sites.

During that time period, my sites were hit with a Google algrithm update (I was buying links at that point, so I deserved the hit). Though my traffic dropped by more than 50%, my income remained flat.

At that point I realized the power of recurring commissions, so I decided to promote Wealthy Affiliate. There are many recurring commission affiliate programs out there, but obviously I was most familiar with the WA platform at that point so it was a good fit to promote.

After years of working that site, when it started really making some good money, I realized that you could make a full time income with a single site. I didn't need a "portfolio". So I sold the group of sites I previously built. Plus, with more years of experience under my belt, I felt like my old sites had some issues I didn't want to spend the time to fix. I wanted to build something new. I still saw the value in diversification of niche topics.

I then took the money I earned from selling my older sites started a new site around 2015. It took 3 years and an investment of about $60k in outsourcing to finally break even, but at the end of those 3 years I had two awesome results.

  1. A website earning more than $5k/month
  2. Tons of experience outsourcing content that actually gets results

Everything went pretty well for a few years, but I was still working a lot. When my wife got pregnant, I had a full 9 months to really prepare for anything that might happen, and that's what I did. I checked my work flows. I prepared assignments for writers that they could work on and be self-contained for a solid amount of time. I looked at what needed to be done immediately, then did it, and made sure everything else had a VA or writer assigned to the task.

What Happened To My Business In 2021

Our baby was born in January, and for about 2 months it was non-stop baby care as I'm sure many of you know. Then, just as things started to chill out a bit, we got into a car accident. The accident in April really knocked me out of work for a couple of months, and here we are.

I broke my right hand, and I found it pretty difficult to get work done, so I decided to just let things slide for a bit while I recovered. After 10 years of consistency, I deserved to take off 2 months to heal :)

The good news is that during this time period it was just business as usual in terms of website operation. Everyone had assignments to work on. My only real work was communicating with VAs if unique situations came up, and making sure everyone got paid on time.

Income is still coming in. Traffic is still growing. Plus, I still have tons of ideas on the back burner that I can work on now that I'm getting back into action.

It was an incredible feeling to know that my business is resiliant to unexpected changes in the world (pandemic), or family (baby), or health (accident). Even though my lifestyle has changed a lot over the past 2 years, I was able to tailor my business around my life, rather than the other way around.

Do You Have The Patience To See This Thing Through?

A business like this doesn't build itself, and it doesn't happen over night. If you gave me a crystal ball in 2010 and showed me all the work I'd have to do to build a business like this, I'm not sure I would have actually done it. It's been a lot of work over the past decade! Now that that particular phase of my business is done though, I'm incredibly grateful to my younger self for putting in the work.

One small technique I use to encourage myself to get work done now is to envision the result I want in the future. Where do I want to be in 10 years? How do I want my life to look like? What do I need to get done over that time period to end up at my goal?

This practice of envisioning what I want my life to look like in the future and working backwards from there has been really helpful to me and produced results I'm happy with.

You'll hear this over and over inside Wealthy Affiliate, but it takes hard work and dedication to make your website successful. Anyone can do it though. It's not rocket science. It just takes patience and dedication.

The Future Of My Affiliate Websites

In total, I've taken about six months off of "hard core" work on my business, and I feel ready for the next phase. I'm not quite sure what that will look like. My wife just went back to work, so we are dealing with a new schedule at home, and since I'm a stay at home dad now, I have to reevaluate what time I have to accomplish things in my business, and where I need to direct that energy.

It's not like in the past where I could just sit at the computer for 12 hours and smash through tons of work. I have to be smarter. I have to be more efficient. I have to be more willing to let some things go until tomorrow.

What I'm working with right now is waking up at 5AM, and getting work done from 5:30-8:30. Then daddy daycare until my wife gets off at 5. Then dinner. Then exercise. Then bed. That's a good 3 hours per day (plus more if I can find it) that I can dedicate to my business. I'll keep you guys updated on how that's going!

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SofiaMM Premium
Hello Natheniell, hope you are fully recovered from your hand. If I ever hear a complain about you not paying attention to someone or not answering questions, I'll tell you were able to provide me guidance on my issues while recovering from a broken hand!! :D

If you want to know how things are going with my website this time I've written a post inside WA (talk about spamming lol): I am modest on my goals and I'd just like to earn a fulltime income, so I could spend more time at home as well - and be free of working for others.

Making this a marathon instead of a 100 meter race, and making work on my website as part of my life. It's tiring, but doable (so doable I am doing it xD). I am fulfilling 2/3 of my plan. It's not great, but I've decided that I'll do it, even if I slow down and take years before reaching my goals.

All thanks to you, you have proven and truly believe that anyone can make an income with a website, no matter in what terms, with how many tools and in how many ways. The only way to not be sucessful is to do nothing about it. You are an inspiration (it's cliché and corny, but it's true lol)

Best wishes for your new life and with your baby.

Sofia
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ColleenLVSJC Premium
Just seeing this... Congratulations to you and your wife, Nathaniel! You had a much-deserved break for healing and for transitioning to being a stay-at-home dad. Having other responsibilities can greatly impact our lives and the time available for our online businesses---but it's still doable.

Looking forward to your updates. Hope the little one is doing well. :)
Colleen
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Debbi26 Premium
You're a shining example of what can be accomplished. I love the flexibility of WA.

Sorry to hear about the accident but the baby is a great addition. Your life will never be the same and it sounds like you're growing through all the changes. Congratulations.

I have no doubt that you'll always do well.

Debbi
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philmedia Premium Plus
I love your insight, and I hope you know it makes a difference to us newbies when you write and share. Your honest and very real. It's always a pleasure and well worth the time out to get your insights.

I wish you and your family all the very best through this new and exciting time for you. Phil
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CassiOfTroy Premium Plus
And I am so very happy to say that Nathaniell is my mentor, Phil. 🙂😉

Cassi
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philmedia Premium Plus
Excellent and that makes a lot of sense brilliant!!!!!
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CassiOfTroy Premium Plus
Thank you!

How are you doing?

Cassi
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philmedia Premium Plus
All good, thanks Cassi, time is a challenge and priorities, just working on the podcast and books. And keeping up with my posting. All good, though. I hope all good with you?
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CassiOfTroy Premium Plus
Yes, all good here, Phil.

As you mention podcasts, I have started a training program with Steve Olsher - 'Closing from the Stage'
It is exceptional!!

Waiting to get into Clubhouse so I can listen in more.
Loving it all!

Cassi
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tommo1968 Premium Plus
Great news on the new addition you are now one of the "Fathers Day" gang.

Sorry to hear of the accident hopefully you will make a full recovery and be back refreshed and ready for more.

If I know you and I think I do I bet all those hours with your new addition had your mind racing on new niche ideas, baby nutrition, baby changing, baby toys, etc etc.

Also great to hear your online business has remained intact and working on autopilot this last while.

Mark
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nathaniell Premium Plus
Haha. I was already thinking about how to integrate my kids into my affiliate sites before I was married LOL. Action plan in place!
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