I’m baaack… and Getting Things Done

In case you thought I’d dropped off the face of the Earth, I wanted to let you know I’m still here.

I’ve been hard at work on the book I’m writing with Joe Vitale for J. Wiley & Sons Publishing,  “Meet & Grow Rich: How to Easily Create and Operate Your Own Mastermind Group for Health, Wealth and More”.

It’s been quite an experience.

This is my first book with a major publisher and the process is far different than writing an ebook. For one thing, there’s a deadline.

Writing deadlines aren’t new to me but until now, they’ve been self-imposed. And adjustable, if necessary. Not this time. The publisher wants this book on February 15th so they can release it this summer.

That’s not all. They gave us a minimum word count. That’s new to me, too.

The flip side to this versus writing an ebook is they also gave Joe and I a nice advance check before we started writing. That was the fun part.

So in order to meet our deadline, we’ve been working away on the book and I haven’t had a chance to write to you. 

One thing I discovered over the past month is that my business really can run on autopilot. Despite the fact that I went over two months without a blog entry, product review or emailing an offer to my list, my websites all kept generating income.

It’s not like I didn’t have to do anything. There were still the usual customer service emails to answer, joint venture offers, technical glitches and the like to deal with but this took very little time.

It’s nice to be in a position where your websites cover the bills giving you the freedom to take time off to create new products. And I don’t say that to brag but rather to point out that the whole Internet marketing thing works. 

Judging by some of the emails I get, there are a number of people out there that think the idea of making money online isn’t real but a fantasy being peddled by people out to get your last dime. Although there are a lot of people climbing aboard the Internet marketing bandwagon that aren’t making money, it’s not because it’s impossible.

One challenge I see is that many people are suffering from information overload.

I get letters almost every day from people that say something like this…

Dear Bill,

I really enjoy reading your ezine and want to create my own website. I bought Corey Rudl’s Insider Secrets to Internet Marketing which I haven’t finished yet. I just got an offer from Marlon Sanders who has his Marketing Dashboard on sale with some great bonuses. Have you reviewed it? Do you think I should buy it?

Sincerely,

Ned Newbie

Do you see Ned’s problem?

I bought Corey Rudl’s Insider Secrets to Internet Marketing which I haven’t finished yet.”

He spent $197 on an Internet marketing course. He hasn’t even finished reading it, much less started applying what he’s read. Now he wants to get Marlon’s course.

Why?

The answer is because it’s a lot easier to pull out your credit card and order another course than it is to actually read one and start doing the work.

There’s nothing unusual about our friend, Ned. He’s a lot like you and me. And I know my bookshelves are crowded with books that have bookmarks inserted somewhere around the second or third chapter. How about you?

The reality is that few people that buy books ever get past the first chapter.

I remember hearing Alex Mandossian tell a story about a company that released an expensive multi-tape program. They discovered that the duplication plant had accidently left tape number nine in the series blank.

Despite selling thousands of copies of the program, they only had one complaint. Apparently nobody else stuck with the program long enough to get to that ninth tape.

So my advice to you is if you are still struggling to make your first dollar or your first hundred dollars online, stop buying new ebooks, $1000 products and the latest software gimmick until you’ve used and applied one of the courses you’ve already got.

Whether it’s the Insider Secrets, Marlon’s Marketing Dashboard, 33 Days to Online Profits or even Joe Vitale and my Ultimate Guide to Creating Moneymaking Ebooks doesn’t matter. While they all take different approaches to marketing, any of them will get you to the point where you’re making money.

But none of them will work unless you work. Your chances for success just by owning any or all of these courses are zero. So pick one and get started.

Getting Things Done

Another problem we all face, especially at this time of year, is getting organized.

My friends tell me I’m very organized but a month ago I certainly didn’t feel organized at all. What I felt was overwhelmed.

It was so bad that I was having problems focusing when it was time to write. And I was really stressed out. I’d sit there staring at a blank screen in MS Word but I couldn’t concentrate. I kept thinking about all the calls and emails I needed to return, the projects I needed to finish, products I needed to review, etc. I simply could not focus on writing.

I stumbled upon a good on Amazon that caught my eye. “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” by David Allen. Now the last thing I needed was another time management or organization system. If you’ve ever read one of these time management books, you know why.

First, you read the book. Then you’re steered to all the backend products like the planning book, the refills and the software. David Allen’s book is different. He recommends you use whatever system you like, even if it’s just writing on a legal pad.

After reading some of the reviews on Amazon, I ordered the $9.95 book.

The first thing Mr. Allen points out is that we carry far too many things around in our heads. He compares this to RAM on a computer. If you open up too many applications on your computer, either your computer is going to crash or it’ll slow down to a crawl. This is exactly what’s happening with our brains when we try to keep track of too many things in our head.

If we don’t do something about it, we’ll be totally overwhelmed.

What happens for most of us, according to Allen, is we use some type of system that’s flawed and that we no longer trust. We feel like too many things fall through the cracks in our current system, if we even have one, and so we feel like we’ve got to remember everything.

Trying to remember everything is a productivity killer.

One of the first things Allen has you do is gather everything in your office that needs to be dealt with, one way or another, and put it in one gigantic pile. Your giant inbox. He suggests that you set aside a couple of days for this. A weekend is perfect. In my case, it actually took three and a half days. Here’s my “inbox”…

 

Bill Hibbler In Box

 

The pictures don’t really do it justice. The pile was about seven feet long and the blue box you see in the background is larger than most ice chests.

I got rid of a LOT of junk. I tossed, shredded, filed and piled. My paper shredder overheated several times. But everything in that pile is now either gone or in a place where I can find it immediately whenever I need it.

And all my to-do’s, projects, reading material, etc. are completely organized. Whatever I need can be retrieved in seconds.

And David Allen was right. Once I processed everything in that pile, I felt immediate relief. I was able to sit down and crank out a couple thousand words for my book without any distractions.

I’ve been using David Allen’s system for a couple of weeks now and so far, so good. I’m using Outlook to keep track of my to-do lists and I bought a Treo 650 phone so I’ve got everything with me even when I’m on the road. Very cool phone, by the way.

So if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just want to be more organized, check out David Allen’s “Getting Things Done”. It’s under ten bucks. I liked it so much I ordered half a dozen more copies from Amazon for my mastermind group.

Just remember, you have to actually read it to get the benefits.

All the best,

Bill Hibbler

P. S. I can’t give you details right now but if you’d like to work with me and several Internet marketing experts in a small classroom setting, don’t plan anything for May 5-7th. Only 25 will be allowed to attend and when you hear more, you’ll definitely want to be there. More later…