Making your online home business success comes down to three powerful words: organization, commitment, and perseverance.
Some people fall into a trap of treating their online home business more like a hobby than they do actual income-generating business.
They scatter necessary print outs around the room like sections of Sunday’s newspaper. They scribble important passwords down on paper as though they’re writing down movie times.
Then they curse the internet gods when they’re locked out of a website.
If you were to look at their desk, you’d swear a high school student used it rather than a “professional” web publisher or affiliate marketer.
Every single person who does home business online should take a trip to Staples, Office Depot, or Office Max and stock up on items that’ll bring a higher level of professionalism and organization to their home business.
The following are just a few of the office supplies that I honestly don’t think I could live…make that work… without:
Index cards and an index card box
These are simply too ideal for keeping track of login information. Every username and password I will ever need is in my index card file.
As soon as I register with a new website or affiliate, I write down the URL of the site, my username, the e-mail I used when I signed up, the password, and any other information I think I’ll need.
These short extra steps have saved me endless frustration and needless hide and seek episodes with missing passwords.
Sturdy 3 ring binders
Don’t buy the cheap, paper folders. They’ll wrinkle, tear, and look beyond terrible in just a matter of weeks. Buy the hardback 3 ring binders.
Not only will they last longer, but they can also be placed beautifully on bookshelves which makes them functional and attractive.
I color code my binders. I’m a web publisher with over 20 websites and blogs, so organization isn’t just preferable for me, it’s vital.
I use different colors for different niches.
For example, when I write articles or find information, through research, that has to do with the field of self-help, the information goes into blue binders.
If the contents relate to the food industry and recipes, they go in red binders.
This way when I, let’s say, want to find an article I wrote Tuesday night about my favorite uses for avocados, I know the article will be in a red binder.
I also know which red binder it’ll be in because the most current information for each niche is in the binder on the farthest right.
I know that the avocado information will be in the red binder to the right of the other red binders.
I’ve been working online for quite a few years, and with so many websites and blogs, I have plenty of binders.
If they were all the same color or didn’t organize themselves in some way, I’d spend more time on hunting expeditions than actually getting work done.
Binders can also be marked with dates on the side, allowing you to know what year/month the articles inside were written in.
I actually don’t do this, but right about now I’m wondering why!
Papers agree to stay together so much better if you give them a good reason to.
Marker Boards and Dry Erase Markers – I fell in love with these while homeschooling my three daughters and I haven’t fallen out of love yet.
They’re perfect for writing great big, colorful to-do lists on. Again, with the color coordinating philosophy: You can assign different colors to different tasks, niches, and or types of duties.
We color coordinate with a “degree of importance” in our home office.
Black means, “It’d be really cool if we could do this….” Green means, “Get to it as soon as possible.” Red means, “Stop doing whatever it is you think you’re doing and do this instead. Stat!” As for blue… well, that’s what we need from the store.
I guess it represents the home in-home business.
Always keep a good supply of ink pens on hand. It’s a great waste of time – and quite frankly a headache – to have to go searching through the house for an ink pen.
Never run out of printer paper. Get more before you even get low.
If you find something you need to print out, but you’re flat out of paper, you can count on one thing – the information you needed will be long gone before you restock your paper supply.
Again, it’s all about treating your home business as a business – not as a hobby.bus
Remember, if you want your home office to be taken seriously, it starts with you. You have to take it seriously first.
2. Commitment to your home business
Make no mistake about it, working from home has its perks – serious perks. But there’s absolutely no reason to take advantage of the situation.
Commit to a certain number of hours each day that you’ll work and stick to the hours.
If you were working in the workplace and felt an overwhelming need for Starbucks (I understand, believe me, I understand), you wouldn’t be able to just stand up and take off.
You might not have a job when you returned, right?
When the urge for coffee hits, go no further than the kitchen. Then get right back to work.
Those of us who work from home need to make our work a priority and commit ourselves to approach it professionally.
That means, when the urge to go somewhere hits us, we should look at the clock and see how much further it is to either our lunch break or to the end of the workday.
Sure, this sounds harsh and it sounds completely different from how most of us approach our online home business.
But, trust me, when you treat our online home business like a business more than just a hobby, it’ll behave more like a business than a hobby.
I’ve also found that, while it’s beyond tempting to work in your pajamas or gown, you’ll feel infinitely more professional if you get dressed.
You’ll notice a difference in the way you, yourself, approach your work.
It’s just another little way you let your brain know that you’re more than a little serious about this.
A final thought about commitment: Your television should be off during work hours. No exceptions.
Be committed. Be professional.
No matter what you may have read on a guru’s site or heard a guru say, “overnight success” belongs in the same category as poison apples, glass slippers, and magic wands: Fairy Tales.
Anything worth having has to be worked for and, very often, fought for.
That’s why it’s so very important to find a niche you love because you’re going to be spending a great deal of time with it.
Just remember, you can’t give up. There will be months when your income is ridiculously low, especially in your first year.
There’ll be disappointing months even after you’ve been at it for years, as well. As with everything in life, there are highs and there are lows.
The trick is not to allow yourself to, personally, become a roller coaster. Stay steady.
Don’t rise too high when things are going well (you’ll have less of a fall when they dip again), but don’t ever crash when things are down.
Simply tell yourself, “It can only go up from here!”
When things do go bad, don’t get discouraged, simply look for ways to make them better.
That’s the wonderful thing about being your own boss – you can try whatever you want to try, without permission.
If you think you need to spend more time networking, do so.
If you decide you need to generate more traffic by writing an article a day and submitting it to publications, do that.
Personally, I think this one’s golden.
Do what it takes.
Persevere and remember that quitting isn’t an option. Dedicate yourself to making your online business work and you’ll amaze everyone around you, including yourself.
When it comes to working from home, remember the golden rule: Be serious if you want to be taken seriously.
May you have so much success that you aren’t sure what to do with it all!
As someone once said, “self isn’t something one finds, it’s something one creates.”
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