The Difference Between Having an Online Income and Growing an Online Income

Lately I’ve been taking a hard look at the way I’ve been going through my days. It seems like each day I have some new chaotic thing going on and it’s frustrating. Six months ago my online business was flourishing. I was bringing in tons of commissions and sales. I had plenty of writing clients – in fact, I had so many I was turning them away from time to time. More than all that, each day left me feeling happy and fulfilled.

Spring on forward to today and everything is stagnating. I’ve got money coming in, sure. I’m still making PLR sales here and there. I’m writing for a few clients. My Kindle books are still selling. It’s not bad and that’s one of the reasons I like working online.

Here’s the thing. I haven’t been growing my online business. I’ve barely been maintaining it because when life started getting tough I put work on the back burner. Unfortunately that doesn’t really work if you want to succeed online. When you’re working online you have the freedom to take time off, but if you keep putting your business on the back burner it’s going to fall apart without you there.

My income has dropped to maybe 60% of what it was when I was growing my business.

Having a business is:

  • Keeping your hosting paid for.
  • Replying to emails.
  • Handling small day to day details,

Growing your business is:

  • Creating new income streams.
  • Blogging.
  • Making new connections with people.
  • Releasing new products.

I’ve been settling for “having” a business thinking I’d get back to it when things calm down. Here’s the simple truth though… life never calms down. It just goes through different stages of chaotic and busy.

So, what is one to do? For me I need to remind myself I’ve worked through worse and everyday people deal with worse. I can handle running my business and dealing with life. I just need to schedule better, delegate better, and concentrate better. All of those are things I can do.

You can’t just let your business stagnate and expect to keep the same earnings. If you aren’t growing your business and actively working to keep it profitable, you’ll see some of those profits start to slip away.

I’m reading this course by Tiffany Lambert right now called “Work Life Balance Without Excuses” as well. Over on her blog we’ve been able to watch her work hard and keep her business growing while going through huge life changes including a divorce. She’s kept things growing. It’s pretty fantastic and I can’t wait to see what I can learn from her.

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  1. You have basically just described my situation perfectly. There must be something in the air lately…I have gone from being totally committed to building a real online business to barely even making a dime, and oh my gosh it’s frustrating!

    I hope things are looking up for you in your personal life…I know you will do well with building your business back up because you are great at what you do!

    I’ve let my family dictate my workload, and it’s really made me lose my stride. Coupled with a nasty battle with depression and fatigue, and I just lay down and gave up! Fortunately, things are looking brighter on the personal front for me. It’s still so hard to juggle the kids and the needy husband and get any work done, but like Dory says in ‘Finding Nemo’, I’ll ‘just keep swimming’.

    I think I’ll get Tiffany’s report…it might help me get sorted out!
    Jessica Woods recently posted..The Best of British Christmas Television ProgrammingMy Profile

    • The fatigue has been a big issue for me. Depression causes it but vitamin deficiencies can cause both depression and fatigue. If you can, you should see a doctor and have them make sure everything is okay both with your vitamin and hormone levels.

      Tiff has a few little add-on reports included that talk about saving time on things like cleaning, meal preparation, and all of that. I’m really glad to have gotten a copy.

  2. Hi, Amanda …

    Sounds like you’ve had a bit of an awakening, of sorts … and it seems like that’s a good thing. Dropping 40% in your revenues is a pretty bitter pill to swallow, on top of dealing with the chaos you’ve been trying to balance – so you’ve probably come to this point just in the nick of time!

    The thing is, now that you’ve put your feet back on the ground, you can start to make progress at reclaiming your previous revenue levels, and then create strategies for the growth you were striving for before life got in the way. From what I can see, you know exactly how to do that … you just got a little bit off-track, is all.

    Thanks for the reminder to keep watching both ends of the spectrum, so as to keep everything in balance. It’s so easy to take our eyes off the prize when life throws us a curve.

    Best wishes for a dynamic recovery!

    Lily-Ann MacDonald recently posted..When Love Slams The Door On YouMy Profile

    • The first step is getting back to a real schedule where I sit down and do work each day. I’ve picked the most important out of my projects and decided to focus on getting that fixed up first.

  3. This is a timely reminder to all of us, especially as the economy continues to get tougher.
    I’ll be interested to hear what you have to say about Tiffany’s new Work Life Balance product. It sounds interesting.
    Becky recently posted..You can start an art journal todayMy Profile

    • I’ve read the first half of it now. I have to be honest, it’s pretty great stuff. Tiff understands how hard it can be to strike a good balance and she doesn’t tip-toe around anything. It’s right to the point and I’ve already found some really helpful tips.

  4. There’s a huge difference between growing your business each day and taking “breaks”. I think that we get caught up in taking time off that it’s hard to jump back into the spirit of “meeting new people” and finding other “forms of income”. It’s like the motivation goes away unless your sharing it with a few people online. I know I wouldn’t be as far without having that small group of online buddies that take time out of their day to talk with me. It’s that feeling that your not alone online, which adds to growing your business.
    Vincent Paul recently posted..Two Inspiring Quotes Every Marketer Should KnowMy Profile

    • I see while I’ve been gone you’ve taken some big steps in your online business. I can’t wait to hear more about them! I agree, it seems like my ability to get things done suffers when I don’t take time to talk with the marketers I consider friends.

  5. Hi Amanda – I was wondering where you had disappeared to. Sorry to hear that you have had to deal with issues that have hindered your online progress.

    Good to hear that you are learning lots from Tiff’s new course.

    I hope things improve for you soon. I know that you will figure out the best course of action so that you can move onwards and upwards.

    Take care
    Victoria Virgo recently posted..Can You Make Money with Bubblews? – My ReviewMy Profile

    • Things are already improving. Just sitting down and writing this blog post got me in a much better mood. I feel so much better about everything when I’m getting work done.

  6. I have been guilty lately of not growing my business. I have been doing everything I “need” to like my PLR memberships, sort of regular PLR releases and emailing my list but I haven’t been working on growing. I have become quite complacent but it doesn’t really make me happy or fulfil me! I am taking Melissa Ingold’s workshop right now and it’s helping me a lot to figure out what motivates me and what I want to personally work on (I can outsource the rest!)
    Ruth recently posted..Perfecting Your Content Strategy, Now and in the FutureMy Profile

    • That’s great! I’m going through Tiffany’s course and getting back to work. Sitting down and blogging improved my mood a lot. I love blogging and I think that being away from it kind of made everything fall apart. I was looking back at some of my old blog posts, the ones in the “Must Read Posts” category, and realizing that when I sit down and write an inspired blog post it’s probably one of the best feelings. I need to do more of that!

  7. I recently decided to quit my job and become a freelance writer. The only thing that worries me is that I might have a tough time at some point 3 or 4 months down the line and then let things slide. I don’t think my fiance will let me as he’s constantly harping on about ‘getting my name out there’ but you never know.

    Great article, really made me think 🙂

    Louise x

    Confessions of a Secret Shopper
    Louise recently posted..Christmas Countdown: Stir-up Sunday!My Profile

    • I get that. It’s a scary thing. I remember when I decided to stop looking for a job and work online. I wondered the same thing. I’m going to be honest with you.

      It’s tough. It’s really tough. There are days when you think “I can get to that tomorrow” and put yourself behind. There are times when you feel like you don’t have the energy. Distractions are everywhere. It’s hard work staying focused.

      If you want to succeed, you need to know that it’s going to be really hard. In the end though, it’s worth it. Focus on your goals. Figure out WHY you’re doing what you’re doing and think about that on those days. Some days are easier than others.

      The biggest tip I can give you is that when you see yourself get off track, don’t say “I’ll get back on track tomorrow.” You say “I’ll get back on track NOW.”

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