Steps to success—let's face it, we’ve all looked for a cheat sheet to life, work, and everything else. All looked for that "simple" formula to make ourselves richer.
Sometimes they are great sound bites like, “Work smart, not hard” or “If you are good at something never do it for free.”
Broad statements and they sound great. But they need a little work. And that’s the trick that messes people up. So, let's break it down.
If you’re good at something, never do it for free.
The problem with this—a lot of the time it’s never a quick payday. It can be months of hard work or even years before you get a payout from it. Most times in the beginning, it’s a win just to have one person see your work.
Given how long it can take to actually get a pay out, it’s all too easy just to give up and do something that pays—not something that you really want to do.
Instead of thinking of it as an instant payday, think of it as building the portfolio and that, that is what will get you paid. The portfolio that pays, not the quick job to make a million.
Gotta Love What You Do
A passion for what you do is what keeps you doing it. But it’s a double edged sword. Finding something that you love to do is hard enough—and we’ll get to that in a moment. But when you find it, you can over do it. You need time to relax. You need to be able to rest and do nothing, even when you find something you love, especially if it means you are self-employed anyway. You need that time away from the office.
Without it you’ll find yourself getting too exhausted to do anything and if you push on, what you put out just won’t be up to scratch.
Finding What You Love
So this is a little harder, because this is what changes from person to person. Finding what you love and making money from it—that’s the hardest part. In this day-and-age, you can make money from anything, but you need to find what you love to do. Traveling? Writing? Something with media or entertainment?
What is there in your life that you think you can do every day? Sometimes it’s more academic—and that makes a whole load of more problems, like getting the grades and qualifications for it. But nothing is beyond your reach if you are willing to put the time in. And for anything self employed, you should always remember the first point: build that portfolio.
Learning How to Sell You!
This one is where a lot of people fall down. So, you’ve got your skill. You know what you want and you know you can do it—but how to make people know that you are the best for it? Why should they pay you money and not someone else?
My last interview I was asked a question that normal trips people up. "Why should I give you the job?"
It’s always difficult to sell yourself. But the mentality you should have—even though it will make you sound like a body part—is, “I am the best.”
And yes, that is how I answered. With a smile, of course. Said as a joke but with confidence. Remind yourself that you are the best. Modesty will not get you the career you want. It won’t bring the success you deserve.
Of course there is more than just the right attitude. You need to build yourself on social media. Linkedin, FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram—all these platforms are free and they are there ready for you to use. Ready for you to build yourself up, regardless of where your path is.
So, identify what you want. Work and build to your strength with passion. Learn to sell yourself, not just what you can do, and more importantly remember this: It’s only failure when we give up.