John Lee Dumas: Alright, Fire Nation. We’re just going to get back into the Question and Answer swing of things with Kyla Kirkpatrick, the “Champagne Dame” from www.thechampagnedame.com. “Hey, John. My question is I’m a very driven person and I’m working on a new business which is really taking off. With any new business, there is so much to do. Particularly, not having a team to assist. But it is all blue sky with many avenues to explore. I am finding it incredibly hard to mentally switch off from thinking about my business and I find it hard to remove myself from my desk at the end of the day. Some days, I sit there till midnight and I get up at 5:00 a.m. to keep going. I hate taking a weekend off because it breaks my momentum. And because I’m doing a job that I love, it’s even harder. A good problem to have, I suppose, but it’s wearing me out and I can see my family and friends are growing tired of my constant focus on work even though they are happy for me. So how do you switch off even when you are on a roll to take personal time and family time that does not have any focus or element of work? Many thanks, Kyla.”
Kyla, this is a great question because as an entrepreneur, we are so lucky to often be working in our passions, and when we get caught up working in our passions, time just seems to fly by and it doesn’t even feel like work. It just oftentimes feels like play. I’ve heard of what you’re talking about with so many people. I’ve experienced it myself more than once. You just are always thinking it, you’re always on the go. It’s just business, business, business. There’s a huge problem with that mentality. Simply put, you’re going to get burned out. I don’t care how much you love your business, how much you think you can just do this till the day you die. You need to realize, if you really do love your business, you’re going to have to force yourself to take time out and break away because you are not nearly as effective, you are not nearly as efficient when you are just working these 18-hour days.
One of the best things that you can do is set a schedule. You really need to schedule your time and your play, and you need to make sure you stick by it. I’ve recently gotten a Fitbit, and what a Fitbit is is it tracks the number of steps I take, the number of miles, calories that I burn, floors that I climb, etcetera. That forces me to really get competitive with myself and get up and get out of the office and walk around. Believe me, when you’re walking around, you can come up with some really good thoughts. So take a paper, take a pen, write these thoughts down as you have them. But then there’s also that time in the evening when you really need to turn that switch off. It’s not going to be easy, but I’m telling you, if you don’t, you’re risking total burnout. So if you really love your business, if you really love your passions, do yourself a favor. Limit yourself to around 10 hours, 12 at the most. A 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. schedule is pretty easy to stick with. Make sure you’re taking breaks throughout the day to stay fresh, to stay focused, to stay sharp, but come 6:00 p.m., shut it down. Go out, have some dinner, visit family, visit friends, laugh a little bit. This is about the journey. This is not just about your passion, your business. So enjoy every single day on multiple levels.
This next question is from Joe Cassandra of 7minentrepreneur.com. “Hi, John. Why do you think your podcast was able to take off so fast? Because you release every day, marketing tactics, connections?”
Hey, Joe. That’s a great question and I’d love to share that with you. I do think there’s honestly a number of reasons as to why EntrepreneurOnFire took off so fast. One, I do release every single day, and that was a niche that I felt needed to be filled. I wanted a podcast that was fresh every single day, seven days a week for my commute, and it wasn’t out there, so I created that, and I feel like that’s resonating very well with a lot of people – a fresh podcast waiting for you. Marketing tactics, I interview some amazing people, Joe, that have huge social networks. We leverage that network. Every time a new podcast goes on, it’s being opened up to a whole new tribe of people.
So that kind of goes into the connections as well. I’m able to form these connections and really form these bonds with the people that I’m interviewing because I’m spending 30 to 40 minutes basically on the phone with these guys, and by the end, we’re friends, and friends do things for each other. So I’ve had a lot of help from my interviewees. I’ve helped them out in every way that I can as well. Consistency is so key. You guys at Fire Nation know that you can count every single day that a new podcast is going to be waiting for you, and that’s important. So whether you’re going to release a podcast once a day, once a week, once every two weeks, stick to that schedule and you’ll be doing all right.
This next question is from Chris Kelly. “John, the struggle I’m having is the difference between me talking about being an entrepreneur and actually being an entrepreneur. I can’t seem to find a business idea. I’ve looked externally and even done some introspection, and I’ve come up with nothing so far. I’m prepared to commit the time and energy, but I have nowhere to place that motivation.”
Man, Chris, this could honestly be me one year ago writing this email. I had tried so many things. I had been in the Army as an officer for eight years – four active and four in the reserves. I went into finance, I did real estate, I went to law school, I tried everything. I tried so many different ways to find my passion, and it just wasn’t there, and I was getting frustrated at myself.
What I can tell you is this. You are absolutely doing the right things. Listen to EntrepreneurOnFire as much as possible. You’re going to hear from a different successful entrepreneur in different industries, in different fields, every single day. There’s going to be some great ideas that are going to spark from this. You’re going to take some great lessons down. Then one day you’re going to hit on that thing that’s going to really inspire you and you’ll be able to put that pent up energy and passion into it. Just like I did with EntrepreneurOnFire.com, when I finally made that decision to launch back in June, to start building my platform, and I came out with a seven day a week podcast, it really has rocked the podcasting world, and you’ll be able to rock any industry that you decide to put your passion and your energies into.
This next question is from Jason Benavides of Octane Performance Training. “Hi, John. I really appreciate you developing the podcast. I opened up my business in May and have enjoyed listening to the struggles others are dealing with and how they used those periods as opportunities to improve. My question is that I would like to start using SEO for my personal training/fitness business. Could you or anyone recommend how or who would be the best resource for this? Thanks.”
Well, Jason, I’ve interviewed two of the best in this industry – Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz and Erica Douglass of Whoosh Traffic. Go back to EntrepreneurOnFire.com, click on the podcast tab, scroll down and check out those two podcasts. You’ll get a lot of great intel. But I can tell you the short version is this – and as I’m speaking, it’s Wednesday, November 7, 2012 – Google just came out with something this week that made SEO even more focused on one word, “content.” Don’t try black hack tactics. Don’t try to get links that are from less than reputable places. You just need to produce awesome content, and a lot of it, on your site. You’ll start getting linked to by real, relevant sources, and that will help your SEO. Anything else, you’re just wasting your time and your money on.
This next question is from Mark [Lobello]. “Hi, John. I’m a daily listener of the podcast and commend you on your passion to inspire potential entrepreneurs. You have made a difference in my life and I thank you. I’m working on putting together a social media type website that brings together people who may need quick delivery of some sort, and anyone with a truck that is looking to make additional money. I believe a website that allows profiles to be made and ranks to be given fits the business well. My question for you is are you familiar with any WordPress templates that may fit this type of website? Thank you for your time and keep igniting.”
Mark, thank you for your time, and you keep igniting. I really like this idea that you have, but I like more the passion that you’re going to be putting behind it. It really resonates through this email and I really hope that you see it through. As far as WordPress templates, a lot of times, you get what you pay for. There are some very decent WordPress templates out there such as Twenty Eleven, Twenty Ten and some others. However, for a very reasonable amount of money – sometimes it’s $70, sometimes it’s $120 – you can buy an awesome theme. A couple that I really recommend are Thesis Theme and PageLines. I’m actually running my website off of PageLines and I’m running my membership website off of another theme called OptimizePress. You can find these three themes on my resources page. I have my affiliate links there. If you want to get a little summary of them, they’re right there on my resources page – EntrepreneurOnFire.com/resources. In a nutshell, it definitely depends on your budget. If you have a couple thousand dollars that you want to put into your website, you should just get a designer and not get a theme because they’ll have a developer’s license, and so they will be able to put that theme onto your site for you so you don’t need to double-dip there. If you’re looking to keep it under $200, you can buy one of those three themes that I mentioned. If you’re looking to keep it free, just go to Twenty Eleven. That’s a very basic website that’ll get the job done. The main thing is don’t get stuck up on anything. Just keep moving forward every single day. Don’t let websites or themes or business cards or logos slow you down. Nothing should slow you down. You need to keep making forward progress every single day towards your goal.
Well, guys, that’s going to do it for this week. I didn’t ask for any questions in my weekly newsletter, so I didn’t get any. Instead, I asked for people to send me ideas on video tutorials they would like me to create for them because I’m looking to create one video tutorial every week that will help entrepreneurs. So my call to action right now is if you have a question of any kind, send me an email at John@entrepreneuronfire.com. If you have a video tutorial you would like to see created, send it to the same exact place. Fire Nation, I hope you enjoyed this episode, and we have an amazing lineup coming this week. Seth Godin, Chris Brogan, Stu McLaren. Such great guests! But above all else, prepare to ignite!
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