The same or better

I could probably do the same or even better. This is the kind of thought i have in my mind when I read the following sentence in an article.

Founded in 2006 as a weekly email to seven friends, BrainPickings now gets more than 5 million readers per month (!).

Source: Maria Popova on Writing, Workflow, and Workarounds | The Blog of Author Tim Ferriss

It started as an email newsletter and now it is serving 5M readers. The best part of all is the author is actually making a living out from it. So usually right after reading this kind of inspiration article, I would head straight to my mac and try starting a newsletter hoping I could be the next Maria Popova.

In fact, if you look up online, there are tons of articles and courses that “says” that they could be helping you to build that list. A few that I found are

Usually these email courses starts off free… I too signup for these courses, hopping it will be game changing to building my email list. So I start implementing the strategies that are being thought in the courses. The motivation was strong intially, getting from 1 to 15 subscribers then to 60 and then it comes to a slow. Now this is the part that make us different from the outstanding authors or people like Tim Ferris or Maria Popova. They are able to make it through the pain of their project coming to a slow because they know that if they are providing value, the list will grow. (I’m speculating this part)

For me I dropped off and I wasted a year. These are the reasons

  • I had a high expectation, I wanted overnight success. (Erm, if we pay attention to the year, Maria’s started in 2006. She work for years to gain the success she has now.)
  • I did not have the discpline to write a weekly newsletter. I thought I could, how hard could it be? 52 letters in a year, piece of cake. But I was wrong. There are many things that came into my priorities, moreover I had such little subscribers and the motivation was running Low. Soon enough, I stop the newsletter and I was back to square one.

I’m sure many people out there have the same problem. We keep wanting overnight success although deep down we know that it is not possible.

I have learnt.

  • It takes time
  • It takes hardwork
  • It takes determination

I’m writing to acknowledge that I was stupid but it’s different now. It seems like a ritual for people to go thought this but I hope if you are reading this, you can save some time from making the same mistakes.

I resumed my newsletter last week.