The lure of making money on the internet has never been stronger. You can write a book and have virtually unlimited supplies in a virtual warehouse. You can start a blog and add check out widgets. Post unlimited photos. Craft marketing campaigns. Cha-Ching! The sky’s the limit. Or so it seems….
If you’ve spent any amount of time taking any of these approaches, you’ve learned they aren’t always effective.
What ends up happening is you invest a lot of time and energy and see very few results. Sure you may sell some books and you may have 500 followers. But there always seems to be something missing, right?
The payoff never seems to match the investment. If you were to be honest, it makes your soul ache a little bit, right? You find yourself wondering why everyone else is successful except for you. You start getting up a little bit later each morning. You know the drill. It begins to feel like everything is dying.
The problem is there’s a difference between real relationships and virtual ones. It’s wonderful to interact with people online, but there’s still nothing like genuine, personal, up- close interactions. Some older folks realize this and avoid the net with tooth and nail. But believe it or not, it’s not only senior citizens and the technically challenged! This entire post was birthed after talking with twenty and thirty- somethings.
Lets illustrate. Imagine your bank account for a moment. It’s a collection of debits and credits, right? Every time you make a transaction it’s altered. It goes up and down based on your saving or spending. It helps to monitor it, right? But if you’re not careful, you can get to the point where you have no idea where it stands. If you just make withdrawls and deposits every once in a while and hope everything is going to pan out, there will be deficits. Major deficits.
Why? Because facts are your friends. Numbers never lie. They help us keep score. You can have the greatest strategy in the world, but if the bottom line isn’t increasing, something’s drastically wrong. And we’re not just talking money or Facebook followers. If you want to FEEL happy or relaxed or artistic or generous….and you don’t, chances are something needs to change. If you’re working on your goals and your core feelings are out of whack, maybe it’s time to start feeling good again. Then start working on your project. Better yet, feel good while you’re working on your project.
If you’ve determined to be successful and happy, but you feel like your life has become a living hell, do something about it.
And if you’re making everyone else’s life a living hell in the pursuit of your dreams and goals, do something about it. Look at the facts. Adjust your course. Cancel an account or two. Cut back on some hours. Carve out some YOU time….some FAMILY time….some COFFEE WITH FRIENDS TIME. Life is too short to spend in a virtual nightmare.
So here it is in a nutshell. In your pursuit of a life on the beach where money just automatically trickles into your bank account online….while you get a tan, make plenty of time to connect with REAL people. As a pastor, I can’t tell you how many times someone reaches out online to say ‘Hi’ and I find out what they really want is some help! After the initial pleasantries, I ask something like ‘So what’s on your heart’ or ‘Is everything o.k?’ Then I find out they’re going through a really tough patch and need someone to talk with. Why? Obviously all of the articles online aren’t enough….or videos….or ebooks. People want connection. They want to talk with another human being, not a virtual one.
Real people with real problems and dreams are looking for real people to talk with.
Does this mean we should abandon all attempts to connect online. Not at all. On the contrary. The net can be a powerful way to meet and interact with people. But….in your pursuit of meeting and connecting with people online, don’t forget to keep talking face to face with real people. In fact, if your going to build a relationship with someone, it’s going to mean spending lots of time with them. The good news is there are a ton of people out there looking for real relationships. The bad news is many of them aren’t finding them because of the advent of cell phones and computers.
Maybe today you would do well to evaluate the results you’re getting in life. Are you reaching your goals in every area? Maybe it’s been awhile since you actually measured your results. Has all of your activity online resulted in increased revenues and customers? Are you happier than you were a year ago? More at peace? Have you grown like you intended?
Don’t get so focused on the pie in the sky that you forget to eat the one on your table. Happy Holidays!