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How I Lost $10,000 and What to Do To Avoid This

How I Lost $10,000 and What to Do To Avoid This

By Pat Flynn on

I’m sorry I’ve been away from the blog for a few days. With the holidays, wedding planning, finding an apartment, and the launch of my audio book all happening at the same time, you can imagine I’ve been a busy bee. I just finished working on 150 or so wedding invitations, and I’m beat. That being said, writing on this blog is a wonderful break from all of that, where I can discuss with you some things that may inspire and teach you whatever it is you take away from it.

So, you may be drawn to read this post via the title: How I lost $10,000 and what to do to avoid this. A more appropriate title may be: How I missed out on $10,000 and what to do to avoid this. Let me explain…

After keeping track of my online passive income for a few months now, I cannot express how much I wish I could turn back time. Why? Because I made one huge mistake – one ginormous (yes, it’s a word) wrong move that if I had the power, I would go back and change. I would have started earlier.

Sick Math

If I had started doing what I’m doing online just one month earlier, I would be $10k richer today.

Now, you may be thinking: “Pat, it’s not like you started out making $10,000 the first month, how could you be $10k richer by starting just one month earlier.” Well, the math tells me so, that’s why.

So let’s say I started my blog in January of 2008, which is true. I didn’t start monetizing it until about April, when I added Adsense, and was getting paid through ad clicks. I then started selling my eBook in October, as you can see in this rough chart of my income per month (these are not exact numbers, but you get the idea:

Monetizing Begins in April

Now, let’s say I started monetizing in March instead of April – just one month earlier, using the same methods and rates of growth and income each month after starting monetizing:

Monetizing Begins in March

I put $10,000 in December, but in reality it would probably be more based on the growth from the previous months. So you see, at the end of the year, at the same exact point in time, there’s a $10,000 dollar difference from just starting one month earlier.

Going Even Further

There’s even more things here that are pretty sickening to think about. What if I had launched my eBook one month earlier too, or even 2 or 3 months earlier? That is money “I missed out on” as well – because the kicker is, I can’t turn back time like I wish I could. No one can, except for maybe H.G. Wells.

Bottom line, in order to not lose (or miss out) on money that you could be putting into your pocket, you must get started as soon as you can.

The old saying holds true…time is money. A classic and similar example can be explained with retirement funds and compound interest.

If you’re 25 years old, and you make $50,000/year and contribute 10% ($5,000) a year to a 401k plan that earns 9% interest, you’d have $2.3 million in your account by the time you’re 65.

If you just wait 5 years (what’s 5 years going to do, right?), and contribute the same amount each year getting the same returns, you’d only have $1.4 million by the time you’re 65. That’s 1 millions dollars lost, just fron starting 5 years later.

Don’t Beat Yourself Up

You can’t beat yourself up thinking about these kinds of things. I’ve already beat myself up about it, and what I’ve learned is that you can’t change the past. Beating yourself up will only consume more time and energy.

The only thing you can and should do, is make the best with what you have presented in front of you.

If you haven’t set up a 401k with your employer yet, that’s okay. Don’t miss out on any more valuable time and do it. If you have a blog and have yet to monetize it, do it. If you are trying to think of something to make more money with, stop thinking – and start doing!

How To Take These Thoughts into 2009

With 2009 less than a day away, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about what you want to accomplish in the New Year. What will you do next year that will help you earn more money online? Write more eHow articles? Write an eBook? Monetize your blog? Create a membership website? Partner with someone? Ask for a raise? It’s all up to you…

Ahh, it feels good to post again. Anyways, I just wanted to finish by wishing you and your family a wonderful and safe New Year. Let’s make 2009 the best year ever! Cheers!

p.s. My December monthly report, as well as my eHow monthly report is up next. Good times. Comments welcome!

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