think-bigger

Imagine selling your site for $200,000. Wouldn’t that be incredible? It depends actually. What if the site took you four years to build? Each week you spent over 70 hours writing content and getting the word out. Furthermore, this was your only job during this time period.

You’re 29 now and flush with $150,000 in cash after taxes, that is, if your buyer pays up front and your company doesn’t have any debt obligations to pay before finalizing the deal. What now? Are you going to start all over and try and build a new website? Are you going to get a job? $150,000 is not going to last you very long if you don’t do anything given interest rates are at such pitiful levels.

What if you were a freelance writer who made $3,000-$5,000 a month. Naturally, you write a book about how to make money freelancing to generate an extra income. Now you’re rocking $3,500-$5,500, or $42,000 – $66,000 a year. Right on! This is your full-time job now and all is good. But, is $42,000-$66,000 really that impressive when college graduates several years out regularly make the same amount? Maybe not. Furthermore, it’s hard to scale freelancing. If you don’t work, you don’t get paid!

WHY DO WE SET DIFFERENT STANDARDS ONLINE vs. OFFLINE?

If I made $50,000 a year for the next four year, nobody would care. The per capita GDP in the US is $49,000 a year. Meanwhile, the per capita GDP in Luxembourg is $90,000 a year! 29 year old MBAs who graduate from Berkeley make $125,000 – $150,000 their first full year out. They are at the higher end of the spectrum, but they are nobody special nor do anybody treat them  special.

But if you sell your website for $200,000 after four years or make $5,000 a month freelancing, people come out in droves to listen to your story! You instantly turn into a mini-celebrity online. And if you can teach people how you did it, you will probably make even more money.

So I ask myself, why do we set different standards for online and offline income? Is it because working for a company is so bad that we must deserve an enormous premium? There are plenty of benefits of working for a company, namely: a steady paycheck, health insurance, vacation pay, and retirement programs. Even better if you somewhat like your day job!

Perhaps people think that being an entrepreneur is easy. I can assure you, it’s not the case. What does feel fantastic is seeing a tremendous correlation with effort and reward. Entrepreneurs eat what they kill, and to most, they wouldn’t have it any other way. If you are complaining at your job why you aren’t getting promoted and not getting the raise you deserve, try your hand at entrepreneurship and do a little suffering. It’ll be good for you!

When I first graduated from college, my goal was to make $100,000 before I retire. After several years of work, I then made it a new goal to make $1 million a year before I retire. Sure, I failed at making $1 million a year from my day job, but it was a stretch goal that helped me earn more than if I did not have this goal!

When I started Financial Samurai, my goal was to just have fun! A year later, I set a goal to make $1,000 a month. Three years later, my goal is now to make $200,000 a year working 20 hours a week. That’s a pretty good goal given $200,000 is the ideal income for maximum happiness, especially if one can only work 3-4 hours a day. However, why am I only shooting for $200,000 a year when I shot for five times that for my day job?!

ENEMY OR FRIEND

We are constantly limiting our potential through our own limiting beliefs. Have you heard these excuses before?

“I don’t think I’m smart enough.”

“The idea has already been done.”

“What if everybody thinks I’m stupid?”

“What if everybody hates me?”

“What if I fail?”

“I’m going to be so embarrassed if this doesn’t work out.”

“I don’t deserve to be here.”

Before we even start, we are already planning for failure! We’ve become accustomed to the fact that only a few people can make enormous sums of money online. Yet, there are billions of dollars to be had!

It’s hard to push through during the beginning, but if you last long enough, the chances of being rewarded skyrocket. The 5,000 words a week Yakezie Challenge is one such step towards blogging glory. There are many more Challenges I push myself to complete every single week.

The Internet is the biggest meritocracy on the planet. Practically anybody with internet access can start their own website or company in a day. Everybody with enough resolve can publish good content or come up with a product. The issue is, we think too small.

It’s time we reprogrammed our minds and think bigger online. Selling your site for $200,000 is fantastic. But even if you made a healthy 10% a year off your gross proceeds, that’s only $20,000 a year. Making $5,000 a month freelancing is good.But these figures are downright pedestrian offline if we plan to work full-time online.

Readers, why do you think we have different standards online vs. offline? Is it all about the transition from part-time online to full-time online that gets everybody all excited?

Related reading:

Quit Your Job And Die Alone

Why You Can’t Blog Full-Time

Best,

Sam