6 Important Lessons I Learned in 2022
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As we wind down 2022, I wanted to write a slightly longer edition of The Saturday Solopreneur to distill down some really important lessons I learned in the last 12 months.
I’m hoping that these lessons will help you and your business as you enter 2023 (and beyond).
Like most advice, it should be taken and adapted to your specific situation rather than followed blindly.
Without further ado, my six lessons learned in 2022.
Lesson 1: Action is the best teacher
The answers to your most curious questions - How do I start a business? How do I grow on social media? What should my newsletter be like? - are discovered only by you taking action.
Not by asking others.
For example, if you can’t answer the question, “What should I write about?”, then just start writing.
Write everything that comes into your mind and publish it online. Do it every single day. Over time, the action you take will crystallize your answer. (Note: Here's my complete system for getting your writing out and publishing across social media.)
I struggled with this in early 2023.
What website platform? What email platform? What colors, fonts, and logos? I finally just said, “Screw it” and jumped onto Kajabi and started building. I’ll eventually outgrow it, but it powered my entire 2023.
Action! (I’m yelling at myself)
Lesson 2: Avoid Shiny Outcome Syndrome
Shiny Outcome Syndrome means being distracted by someone else’s outcome and losing focus on why you’re doing what you’re doing.
Don’t focus on someone else’s money or company size or follower count. We’re all running different races, and some of us started a long time ago.
Instead, ground yourself in the why.
What is your mission? What are your values? Why do you get up each day and work on the things you work on? Why are you building the business you’re building?
I got Shiny Outcome Syndrome in May of 2022 and got completely off track in what I was doing.
Going for the bigger, the better, the grander, instead of just doing what I really want to do: run a profitable business that helps people and helps me spend my time with my family.
Don’t try and be a better version of someone else.
Be the best version of yourself.
Lesson 3: Invest in your environment
This upcoming year, I want you to find 3-5 people who are on a similar journey as you are.
But they must be passionate, optimistic, smart, transparent, and unselfish.
They can be well-established friends or people you just met on social media.
Invite them into a Slack group, Discord group, or SMS group.
Each day, pump each other up, share your learnings, support each other’s content, talk about your biggest mistakes, and lean on each other.
I built a much better, much more communicative network in 2022 and it’s helped me grow leaps and bounds.
You ultimately become who you surround yourself with. Make it a great group this year.
Lesson 4: Simplicity in the beginning
Most people who are trying to do something new, overcomplicate it.
By doing this, people tend to feel like they are working hard when in reality they are procrastinating through overcomplication.
I’m struggling with this right now with a new product I want to build, so this lesson is for me.
But to make it meaningful to more people, let’s take building your first online business for example.
It can be daunting as I mentioned above: logo, URL, colors, fonts, tools, payments, etc. You could spend months trying to find the perfect setup.
Or you could:
- Think of something you’re good at
- Example: Facebook Ads
- Buy a domain on google and setup your email
- onlineadgenius.com is available
- Build a landing page on Carrd that says what you do
- There are 30+ landing page templates, just pick one
- Here's a great guide on how to build a good landing page
- Attach Stripe to the landing page
- Free to set up an account and takes 2.9% + $.30
In the first 30 days, someone will hire you to run ads for their business if you follow lesson 5 below.
Lesson 5: Get some attention
Learn to write for social media or record catchy videos. That’s it.
Don’t know where to start? Remember lesson 1 from above and just get started (but avoid these copywriting mistakes)
Over time, you’ll get better. Read a few blog posts or articles on the subject and implement something you learn each day. Just start and don’t stop.
Find 15 minutes each morning and write something. Over time, find a process that helps you create better content, faster.
For our example above (Facebook Ads) there are a million things you could write or talk about. Brainstorm! Dump ‘em out on paper.
Here are some ideas: The future of social ads, why some ads work and others don't, a breakdown of how to set up an ad, deconstruct a great ad campaign, share something you believe about ads that challenge a popular narrative, compare two ads, How to write an ad headline, how to analyze the performance of ads, how to A/B test two ads, etc, etc, etc.
I know nothing about ads, and I just wrote those ideas in about 90 seconds.
In early 2022, I struggled to create more content and repurposed more than I ever had. Then I finally sat down and built out a better, more efficient content engine which helped me crank out more new content than ever before.
I'd recommend doing the same.
Lesson 6: No “zero” days
Lastly, embrace a concept called, no “zero” days.
This means that every single day, you become slightly better at something than you were the day before.
It doesn’t mean working nonstop every day.
It could be as simple as spending 5 minutes reading an article, listening to 10 minutes of a podcast during a workout, dropping in for a short chat in your Slack group from above, texting a buddy to ask a thoughtful question, or writing for 90 seconds.
These are all small things I added to my repertoire in 2022 and, in aggregate, they were extremely helpful.
Action and consistency form the foundation for success, and having no “zero” days is the best way to always be taking action, and never breaking that consistency streak.
These are 6 critical lessons I learned and applied in 2022.
I hope they help you as much as they helped me.
Have a wonderful New Year’s Eve.
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