The Biggest Obstacle to Success with an Online Business

The biggest obstacle to online success

What’s the biggest obstacle to succeeding with your own online business? Most people would say lack of funds, not enough time, don’t have the skills, don’t know where to start,… but it’s none of these things.

The biggest obstacle is self-motivation. Without it, success is almost impossible, but with it, we can overcome all other obstacles. The self-motivation needs to be powerful enough to stay strong even when we have challenges, and even when we fail.

We can be inspired and motivated by others, but that sort of motivation doesn’t last and it doesn’t stand the test of set-backs.

So how do we get this kind of self-motivation. The kind that stands even the test of failure?

  1. You need to find your WHY. Your why is something that motivates you beyond everything else. It’s the reason for keeping your focus on the result you ultimately want to get. Your why has to be big!
  2. You need to believe and know that challenges are inevitable and failure simply brings us closer to success. It’s very rare to succeed at something worthwhile without having some failures along the way.

I can’t tell you how many failures I’ve had during my online career because it spans more than 20 years and I haven’t been counting, but I know it’s a lot! I still have failures now but it doesn’t bother me. I know from experience that failures are good because they help to show me the path to succeeding.

Getting back to the ‘WHY’. Everyone needs to have one. In my case, I have two and they are so important to me that even after 20 years, they still motivate me.

The why can’t be ‘I want to make money’ because money is just a means to an end. It’s the ‘end’ that should be the why, but not just any ‘end’. For example, if your ‘end’ is to pay off your credit card, that’s probably not big enough. Also, that’s not a why, it’s a goal and the two are not the same.

If you have a goal to buy your own home, that’s a pretty good goal and it can be motivating, but often goals alone are not enough to sustain self-motivation when things don’t go to plan. The WHY would be the reason you want your own home. The reason could be that you want to make a better life for your family and having your own home would play a big part in that.

So, if you have goals, but you don’t have a why, spend some time thinking about the reason you want to achieve these goals because once you know your big WHY, self-motivation is so much easier!

Theo McArthur

Theo has been creating websites since 1996. She's built blogs for both business and personal use and has worked extensively in the field of affiliate marketing and e-Commerce. More than 85,000 students worldwide have enrolled in her courses.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below - a couple of years ago Reply

I was going to say probably a lack of persistence or tenacity. mine is deciding what do make the site about and sticking with that.

    Shira Joynson - last year Reply

    Your article is really helpful. thnks… - a couple of years ago Reply

Theo is great with her contents. Great teacher above all - a couple of years ago Reply

So, true. My why was to have a passive income, so that I (a single mom) could stay home with my young son. In my 10 years online, I have actually succeeded and now earn a livable wage online. However, that “livable wage” isn’t really enough for me to feel secure yet. But unfortunately, I now feel bored with the online thing and am really struggling to get myself to move to the next level and diversify. My son is a teen and doesn’t need my attention like before. So I guess I need to come up with some new “whys” that can reignite my passion.

    Sudha - last year Reply

    I am in a similar boat as you were earlier. I am a single mom with a young son. I’m in the process of starting my online business. It’s always inspiring to hear success stories as yours. - a couple of years ago Reply

This really resonates. I have goals from years ago, but they were vague and open-ended. I went completely the wrong way about goal setting. Now I have set-up a VISION document in word which I open each day on my PC and when I return to my laptop I make sure I glance at this first before continuing with my online work. I still have a list of goals but they are followed with WHY I have these goals (aloong with a visual image for each one) and how it would change the lives of my family.

I would add that PROCRASTINATION has been a major obstacle for me, however my VISION page motivates me into action now.

It is a privilege to be part of such a resourceful and wonderful group thanks to you Theo.

Here’s to all our future success!

Emmanuel Benjamin - last year Reply

have not created a website yet

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