Simply Building Your Business

What do they want from me?

What do they want from me?
Or… ‘The Day I Quit’

I was recently drawn to a post by Donna Merrill called ‘How To Work Through Adversity’. (I’ll put in a link at the end for you as it’s a must read)  

Now, I have followed Donna’s blog for a long time, and she is up there on my All Time Top Shelf of bloggers who inspire me to continue, when I am about ready to stop forever! You know – those times when you feel you have nothing to say that hasn’t already been said by everybody else in a far better way?

Well. That’s when I turn to my blogging friends for inspiration.

Coincidentally in another post last week, this time called ‘4 Top Tips for Silencing Your Inner Blogging Critic’, Ryan Biddulph gave his Tip Number 4 as “Surround Yourself with Loving Blogging Buddies”. So it seems I might have been doing something right after all!

Anyway, back to Donna Merrill’s post. She was also talking about ‘serious situations that bloggers are often beset by…’ and how Real Life Hardships can often sabotage our online work.

She cites examples of ill-health, poverty and even extreme hunger as veritable reasons why our blogs could be neglected. Wow! I respectfully raise my hat to those people who have to overcome extreme challenges like that.

But you see this also got me thinking. Because of course, these are also exactly the sorts of topics people all want to read about, and are therefore inevitably destined to become the next awesome blog topic on which to write.

Any adversity I have overcome will automatically be precisely the subject for my next post.

What they don’t want.

Most people really don’t want to read what a great time you are having, and how you are ‘crushing it’ (I hate that phrase- don’t you?)

Tales of your daily-growing 7-figure income leaves them reaching for the pain-killers and Glenfiddich, or the other way around.

They probably secretly hope that your amazing online business will collapse and disappear overnight into a black hole, and you along with it… 

And they really, really don’t give a flying fig just how many $0000s you have at the end of your PayPal account this month! Or even the list of 5-star hotels you get to stay in, or the amazing super-cars you drive.


And certainly not the dimensions of that gorgeous tropical beach you are currently occupying, and from which you keep broadcasting those fantastic webinars…  (Here’s cartoon I did last year about the poolside lifestyle.)


So what do folks REALLY want to read about?

What they want to know is what a terrible time you are also having, and how you are solving the very same huge and nauseating problems they are going through right now.

They want you to show them exactly how to get from where they are now, to where they want to be in three, six and twelve months time.

Of course, the awesome laptop lifestyle is an aspiration they hold on to in their minds, but the immediate reality is how the Dawkins are they going to go from a standstill, to earning those first crucial and confidence-building dollars online? 

I am actually referring maybe to those seven people who have happily signed up to your monthly affiliate membership at $47 a month, so they can tap into the hugely valuable and supportive regular mentoring program you have created for them.

Very soon they’ll know you, like you and trust you as a result of all the great work you have done with your blog. You have given amazing content on a regular basis, and listened to them as they struggle. You have diligently answered their questions, and through hard work and consistency helped them to see a great result in their new business – just like you did. These are now your tribe; the ones who love you.

You have shown them how to do just what you have done, and they will follow you anywhere…

I remember once I was having a particularly dismal week online, and I decided in my misery that I would shut down the internet permanently, and go off and become a gardener or a shepherd instead.

‘The Day I Quit’

So I decided to entitle my final blog post ever, “The Day I Quit”. Of course, it garnered many more great likes and comments than anything I had written for weeks, with the result that my positive energy was completely restored without me even noticing. In fact, I was so busy replying to all the comments that I forgot my own troubles entirely. (another of the benefits of blogging)

Donna’s great post went on to say that sometimes we are forced to alter the way we do things.

Of course, what she was getting at there reading between the lines, was that there is no other (or better) way to move forward by default than this.

Nothing is guaranteed to delight and inspire a true ‘dyed-in-the-wool blogger’ more than the next surprising life-altering event. You know what? After a while it starts to be something we look forward to rather than something we dread. Really! (Here’s a dyed-in-the-wool blogger…)

Because unless we are prepared to make some changes to ourselves and our own mindset, there will be no changes in our situation ‘out there’. Sounds obvious when I say it like that, doesn’t it?

Comfort Zones

Creatures have evolved over the aeons simply by trying new things and moving out of their comfort zones.

For example, if fish hadn’t crawled out of the water and started to learn how to breathe air, we would not even be here. Imagine the guts that took, and the comments all the other fishes made when the maverick first tried it.

“Dude! You’ll be dead in 5 minutes – we’re fish!”

Whenever I get these very visual ideas – like this ground-breaking fish moving on to the land – I feel compelled to draw a cartoon about it, and this is no exception! Once this scenario starts to work on me I really have no other choice. I think drawing is an amazing way to express complex ideas very simply and with humour. I hope you agree…I’ll post the fish result in my next post so you can see for yourself what a terrible curse this cartooning mind can be!

Thank you to Donna Merril, Ryan Biddulph, Glenn Shepherd, Dean Holland, Louis Doughty and the huge number of other inspiring bloggers and marketers who all work to put great content out there. You inspire me to do the same.

Whenever I feel a tsunami of self-doubt gathering on the horizon, I always do a round of my All Time Top Shelf Bloggers as a pick-me-up.

Try it for yourself right now…

Donna Merrill’s recent post called ‘How To Work Through Adversity’ 


  1. Hey Ric,

    Great article!

    I enjoyed reading it so much.

    There’s so much fluff and nonsense online, it’s a pleasure to read what’s REAL out here… like making sure you help your readers, customers, clients get from where they are to where they dream… Help Them, they will always support you.

    And it’s really the reason folks like you work so hard at this. I know that 🙂

    Donna Merrill recently posted…How To Work Through Adversity – Tips For The Successful BloggerMy Profile

  2. Hi Donna – I see from your messages we have both been tied up with real life this week 🙂 This post was one of those that just flowed as I wrote it, so it’s very direct. Thanks for your visit and comment about ‘no nonsense’ blogging. It’s such a relief sometimes just to be real and say it as it is from where you are, rather than trying to write what we think people want to read. I have never been a fan of pleasing the audience, preferring like you to attract the people who resonate with how I see things. There’s plenty for everyone after all… Richard

  3. Hi Richard. I read Donna’s post too and I disagreed with her a bit because I really don’t believe in adversity. I choose to see opportunities. I saw a quote recently by Michael J. Fox where he called in Parkinson’s Disease a gift, a painful gift, but a gift none the less.

    I think those lifestyle posts can work for the right kind of audience, but they can be tricky to do. You have to set the bar just far enough outside their comfort zone to spark their imagination but not so far that it becomes pure fantasy. For example, showing someone who lives paycheck to paycheck how to make an extra $500 a month works better than bragging about how you make so much that you’re going to pay off the national debt because you don’t know what else to do with your money.

    Unless of course your target audience are already trillionaires looking for something to do with their money.

    I agree that reading about life-changing events and stepping outside of your comfort zone are fascinating. I want to read about what came out of those events too.

    Thanks for commenting on one of my posts recently and I intend to be back more consistently than I have been lately.
    Ben recently posted…How Long Should a Blog Post Be?My Profile

  4. This is a great post Richard. I love your writing style – down to earth and from the heart. I agree entirely with Donna Merrill that it is refreshing to read ‘the truth’ for a change. All those fancy figures put me off too.

    I was interested in Ben’s reply too. He says he doesn’t believe in adversity but that doesn’t make sense to me. Adversity happens and that’s a fact. How we deal with it, by seeing the black cloud or the silver lining will have different outcomes but the adversity has happened none the less.

    Keep them coming.

  5. Hi Richard,

    Reading through your post reminds me of the fact that an average human being is a Jealous being. However, going to the extreme on the act of being Jealous is not a good path and should be avoided.

    The path of showing and providing solutions to people who needs it prompted a paradigm shift in my blogging Journey, and I must confess that I’m getting satisfied and happy with this approach.

    Thanks for sharing
    John recently posted…My $150 Per Day Google Adsense EarningsMy Profile

    • Hi John
      Thanks for reading and commenting on my post
      You are so right about jealousy. It seems to be a primary motivator for people in so many areas of life… relationships, wealth, happiness, and even education, opportunity and ability. A minefield. Great and incisive comment Thanks for the visit. Ric

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