A Lesson Learned From Freshmen

As the fall semester starts here, I’ve been busy preparing syllabi, lecture notes, etc. So I haven’t had much time for my online projects, although I did manage to finish another ebook that I’ll launch sometime in September.

I wanted to talk a bit about the biggest lesson I’ve learned from watching freshmen as they come into college for the first time, and how that lesson applies to newcomers to online marketing.

College Is Hard!

Most of the freshmen find college a challenge. Not necessarily the class material, but the entire experience. Being away from home, entirely responsible for your own actions, answerable to nobody.

A small percentage of them will self-destruct that first year. They’ll decide to ditch class and not do their work, because it’s their choice. Nobody is hounding them to be responsible, it’s up to them. If they’re lucky, they’ll come out of it and start making good decisions. If they’re not, they’ll drop out of college entirely.

When you first start working online, you’re in a similar position. You’ve worked for other people (and probably still do), and in your day job have all sorts of checks and balances to make sure you do what you’re supposed to do.

Online, though, it’s all you. Nobody is going to punish you if you watch a movie instead of working on a mini-site. Nobody is going to yell at you if you knock off an hour early instead of finishing that ebook.

Yet that sort of freedom is an illusion. If you don’t put in the time and the work, you won’t succeed. If you aren’t motivated to start, the chances are good that your motivation will get less and less as time goes by.

You’ll have to be your own boss and force yourself to do the work, to put in the time.

Or you could always drop out, and head back to the day job for good.

It’s your decision.

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