Feeling Overwhelmed? Beware of the "Six-Week Itch"
As part of my 2016 personal commitment to the WA community, I promised to blog once a month to share personal growth challenges I've encountered over the years (many of which I still encounter to this day when launching new projects) as well as how I've learned to push past them.
This particular problem will no doubt hit home for many of you - novices and veterans alike.
A Budding Internet Business is Born...
There's nothing like setting out on a new business venture. It's a combustion engine chock-full of excitement, adventure, ambition, anxiety, doubt, and so much more.
Eventually, after hours (sometimes days or weeks) of analysis and second-guessing, we all have to take the "plunge" and commit to whatever topic will devour a chunk of our lives for months or years to come.
Confronting the "Six-Week Itch"
Relationships are infamous for having a "seven-year itch". Internet businesses rarely hold their luster for even that long.
You might not hit this wall until the three or six month mark. Some of us even hit it a week into our new projects.
Regardless, the monster of doubt eventually rears its ugly head for every venture, internet-based or otherwise, and your entrepreneurial success will be very closely tied to how you confront and overcome this "itch".
Symptoms of what I'm referring to as the "Six-Week Itch" include:
- Dreading every moment you have to drag yourself to work on your new website
- Getting distracted by all of the "shiny objects" around you and thinking about how much easier they might be than the path you're on
- Doubting every move you've made and wondering if you're doing anything right
- Growing impatient because you're not seeing any "real" results yet
- Feeling overwhelmed, overworked, and exhausted to the point that you procrastinate and put all important tasks off; you begin to feel demoralized and like it's not even worth picking up the pieces and moving forward
Sound familiar? If not, begin preparing yourself now. This will stare you directly in the face someday, and it will be one of the most difficult obstacles you encounter in your journey to become a successful internet entrepreneur.
This is the "touch of death" for almost every aspiring internet marketer I've seen fail over the years, and this has killed many of my business ventures personally.
That's Terrifying, Ian! Why Are You Saying All of These Horrible Things?!
Because I want you to learn from my mistakes, and I want to set you up for success as well as I possibly can. Knowing that this "touch of death" is waiting around the corner should harden your resolve and make you think deeper about every project you pursue before you set out on the challenging road ahead.
The Simplest Way to Overcome the Six-Week Itch
Before I share, I want to warn you that this solution is incredibly simple. It's so deceptively simple that it's easy to write off as useless and inapplicable to your journey.
Don't do that.
This understanding has helped me push through my toughest business challenges, and it will for you too if you open your mind and shift your perspective to what I'm about to share.
Most recently, I faced the six week itch while building out a local SEO stream of revenue in my internet business. I've done SEO successfully for all of my affiliate websites over the years, and decided to start working with some local business owners to diversify my "portfolio", so to speak.
This has included a lot of networking events that frequently feel like a waste of time, and a fair amount of cold calling. I've never been able to overcome the obstacle of picking up the phone and dialing a stranger, a small percentage of which seem to be foaming at the mouth or so angry that I can only conclude they just received news their spouse is sleeping with someone else.
Just a few weeks in, there I was staring the six-week itch face-to-face. I was ready to throw in the towel and give up completely. I was tired of not seeing results, sick of being rejected, and craving a new project that didn't make me feel like such a spectacular failure.
What I'm about to share is the simple perspective I took on, which has since changed my morale and given me an entirely fresh outlook on all of the entrepreneurial projects I juggle day-to-day.
"By doing these things, I am already successful."
I was buried in a pit of depression. It was like I had dopamine withdrawals from constantly laughing with some of best friends in Vegas, and I was slowly crumbling under the weight of all the tasks that had backed up while on vacation. I had a massive list of calls to catch up on, I still hadn't seen any results from several weeks of cold-calling business owners in my area, and I was feeling more and more demoralized with every hour that passed.
A couple of days in, as I sank lower and lower, I realized something I had never thought about:
By doing these things, I am already successful.
This applies across my entire portfolio of internet businesses:
- Every business owner I dial
- Every video I post on YouTube
- Every blog post I write or publish from my team
- Every tweet or Facebook share
- Every minute I spend reading books, lessons, or blog posts from industry experts
- Simply put, everything that advances my business.
At the end of the day, success is just moving the puck forward an inch at a time, day after day, until you reach your goal. Then, as though you're attracted to cruelty, you reset the goal farther away and begin inching toward it all over again.
That's success. In business, your personally relationships, and every other aspect of your life.
Once you get your hands on truly effective and helpful training, you cannot fail as long as you never give up.
Remind yourself that you're following outstanding training that's time-tested and proven over and over again. By doing these things, YOU are already successful.
Every lesson you complete...
Every mistake you make...
Every article you publish...
Moves you one step closer to success. If you give up now, you'll never reach your goal. But if you continue learning and reminding yourself that every action you take is moving your business toward success, you are already successful.
Don't Underestimate this Simple Perspective in Your Journey
Never forget that the path to internet success is a long, winding road. Everyone's journey is different, but they're all filled with dead ends, pitfalls, and more personal challenges than the average person faces in a lifelong career.
When you find yourself feeling burned out, overwhelmed, or discouraged, remind yourself that every action you take gets you one step closer to success, and by taking that action, you are already successful - markedly more than you were yesterday.
I challenge you to take an action that moves your "puck" one inch closer to your goal today. And then wake up tomorrow and do it again. And then wake up the day after that and do it again.
This is what success looks like, and as long as you do it every day, you will continue to become more and more successful.