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A Passive Income Mistake: Knowing and Doing Everything

A Passive Income Mistake: Knowing and Doing Everything

By Pat Flynn on

When I’m working on a project, I’ve always felt the need to be totally involved in each stage. By doing so, I am able to make sure things are done correctly. If things go wrong, I’ll find a solution. I’m in total control.

This even goes back to my middle school days. I was once assigned an English project with two of my classmates. The task was to present a poem, in any media format, and share it with the class. We decided to do a video presentation, and I was in charge of the video taping for our group. Well, I did more than just video tape.

I composed and scored the music for the video, I was the narrator, the editor, and the presenter too. I took on almost all of the tasks myself because I wanted to make sure they were all done correctly. Was I being a jerk? No. My classmates were more than happy to let me do all of the work. Was I working really hard? Yes, obviously. Was I being resourceful? Absolutely not. I had two classmates willing to put in work, I just did not give them the chance. Our project received an A+, but looking back, I was not being smart.

Knowing and Doing Everything Online

When I started my blog at, I did everything except invent the internet. I bought books and read all about what blogs were and how it could be used as a CMS (content management system). I read about hosts and blogging platforms, like WordPress, the blogging platform that I use. I found and redesigned the theme myself, made my own logos, and even did all of the SEO (search engine optimization), after buying some books on that too. This is all in addition to writing all of the content as well.

I did enjoy working on all of the parts of the blog, and I learned quite a bit – but I was being stupid. Let me explain. As you may or may not know, I love numbers, so let’s crunch some numbers to show you how long it took me to learn about and do a certain task on my blog at

  • Read about blogs, find a host, and setup WordPress: 25 hours
  • Find a theme and redesign it (with reading): 10 hours
  • Create logos and graphics: 5 hours
  • SEO work (with reading): 15 hours
  • Promotion and marketing: 5 hours

Total: 60 hours

This would be the estimated time it would have taken me to setup the blog to the point at which I didn’t have to do any more of the work listed above. It does not include anything related to the actual content. With all this said, I spent 60 extra hours just setting up my blog, in addition to working a 9 to 5 job and spending time with my girlfriend, now fiancee.

Analyzing the Numbers

Time is money.

If I used my hourly wage from my 9 to 5 job, $30/hour, that’s $1,800 of money I didn’t get for the hours of work I did. Of course, the result of my hours of work was not money, but was instead a blog. I would say that the blog took about 6 months before it finally “paid for itself” concerning how many hours I put into it to set it up.

How I could have Leveraged My Time and Made More Money

If I wasn’t so “me,” I would have known that I could have saved myself time and money by having someone else do all the work for me. It’s the best thing you could ever do to help yourself, trust me. For example, let’s look at the numbers once more.

If I hired someone and paid them $500…wait! That’s kind of steep for only setting up a blog. So, to prove my point, I’ll pay them more. I’ll pay $1000. You might think I’ve saved myself $800, but no – I’ve saved myself even more.

See, it would only take an expert just a couple of days to accomplish all of the things that I did (if you look at my blog at, it’s not all that fancy, really). The blog would be complete and ready for my content, and I could have saved 60 hours, plus the amount of days that those 60 hours were spread over, which was over 1 month.

With those 60 hours, I could have used my time for something else. I could have had my eBook finished and on sale 1 month earlier. My eBook is generating over $7000 a month, so – in essence I lost this amount by doing all the work myself. If I had known this, I would have gladly spent $1000 to have someone set up the blog for me.

But What About Making Sure Everything is the Way You Want It?

That does not have to change, and it shouldn’t. You’re still in total control, you’re just smart about it. When you hire someone, it’s their job and responsibility to do whatever it is you want (I’m talking about internet stuff, you dirty minds). If a part of the design isn’t how you want it, all you have to do is ask them to change it, instead of spending time figuring out how to do it yourself. There’s no need for us to worry about “how to make our blog titles a little more red and more centered.”

Remember, your time is money.

And so, the Point is this…

You SHOULD NOT do everything yourself. I’ve since learned this and you’re actually looking at the product of my first time hiring someone to do work for me. The Smart Passive Income Blog is running a theme that was custom designed for me, and I love it. And, it was finished in less than one week.

Hiring someone to do work for me was a great experience, and I don’t think I’ll ever go back to trying to setup another blog on my own. In my next post, I’ll talk about how I found the designer, Michael, and the things you can do to make sure that when you hire someone everything goes smoothly.

Ask The Readers

Have you ever hired anyone online to work for you? If not, why not? If yes, what was the experience like? Do you think it was all worth it?

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