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How to Overcome the “I Wish” Mentality and Start a Blog

This guest post is by Adarsh Thampy of Conversionchamp.

I wish I started my blog a long time back when there was a lot less competition.

I wish I was able to write great content from the start.

I wish I had the money to purchase hosting and set up a self-hosted WordPress blog.

I wish, I wish, I wish…

How many of us have wished for something like this in the past? Or, worse yet, is still wishing for things to happen just like that?

I know I have. And I bet a lot of you have wished for something similar as well.

The problem with the “I wish” mentality

Do you know what’s stopping you from becoming the most sought after blogger in your niche?

You!

Yeah, you heard me right. The biggest obstacle to your blogging success is none other than you.

I know this for a fact, because I have been in the same position. I started many blogs, built many successful ones … and then let them die. Yeah, just like that.

There wasn’t enough motivation for me to keep going. So in effect, I was my own bottleneck.

Right now I am determined to change all that. Today, I want to share what I have learned from the past five years of blogging with you so that you realize:

  • there’s no reason why you can’t be a success today, even if you feel you should have started a blog long time back
  • consuming more information may be counterproductive for you
  • there is no reason why you should have a self-hosted WordPress blog either (I do believe that having one is best for business, though).

3 Rules for overcoming the “I wish” mentality

Rule #1: Stop wishing

First of all, you need to realize that wishing is not going to make things any better.

Sure, you could wish you started blogging five years back. But five years down the line, you’d be surprised to find that you’d still be thinking the same. You’ll think then, “I wish five years back I wasn’t dumb enough to not start a blog because I thought I was too late.”

If you keep on wishing, the only thing that’s going to happen is that you’ll never realize your dreams, and others will get ahead of you.

So rule #1 for overcoming the “I wish” mentality is to stop wishing. If you want to wish, wish for world peace. If at all your wish comes true, you’d be satisfied that you contributed to a greater good.

Rule #2: Stop consuming too much information

When I started out, I believed that reading all the information I could get my hands on was the best way to learn and grow. How wrong I was!

Information is always good. But once it becomes too much, it’s going to negatively affect your growth.

At one point I was on a buying spree, and spent more than $2000 on information products and courses. Guess what I did with all that information? Nothing! Really, those courses and ebooks are sitting in my computer collecting digital dust. I haven’t even consumed 5% of everything I bought. Talk about a waste of money.

“I wish” I could go back in time and stop myself from buying so many info products and save some cash. But there’s no use wishing. The damage is already done.

I want you to stop investing your time and money into learning as much as you can. You’ll end up wishing for more information. So stop buying things you don’t actually need. Instead, act on what you already know.

Rule #3: Stop thinking about being a pro all the time

We all want to be pros, right? You can either be a “somebody” in blogging or be a “nobody” in blogging. Which would you chose? I’d rather choose the “somebody” over “nobody” any day.

And what’s the first pro tip we all read about blogging? That you need to have a self-hosted blog. If you run a business, there is no doubt that it’s true. But if you are starting out, there is no reason for having a self-hosted blog.

People think that they need to appear professional in order to get acceptance, and they wait for the perfect time to start so they have enough money for hosting and a domain name, getting a unique theme coded for their blog, and even learning coding to customize the blog themselves.

Do you see a problem here? You are just adding complexity to what is, at heart, a rather simple thing.

Most people never get around to getting everything done, so they don’t start a blog at all. So just start a free blog on WordPress or Blogger if you don’t have the money right now to go the self-hosted route. Having a blog is better than not having a blog.

Over to you

Are you still stuck with the “I wish” mentality, or have you experienced it? How did you overcome it? Let us know in the comments.

Adarsh Thampy is a blogger and advices small and medium business on effective content marketing strategies. You can read more on the topic of content marketing by following Adarsh @conversionchamp.

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Comments

  1. One of my favorite philosophers once said: perfect is the enemy of good.

    Don’t let perfection keep you from being good, or just simply being. A mediocre blog is better than a spam blog any day.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      John,

      Spot on man. If we wait for everything to be perfect, we’d find out that the rest of the pack has gone in front leaving us in a digital black-hole. Not that it’s not good to be perfect, but overly obsessing about being perfect is definitely a bottle neck.

      Thanks for sharing your thought.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      John,

      Spot on man. If we wait for everything to be perfect, we’d find out that the rest of the pack has gone in front leaving us in a digital black-hole. Not that it’s not good to be perfect, but overly obsessing about being perfect is definitely a bottle neck.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    • Well spoken, John. Sometimes the best thing you can do in this world is to just “DO” it. And perfection is a pursuit, not a destination – for it can never be achieved. So just go ahead, do it, publish it, and do it some more… perfection will meet you somewhere along the road.

      My own http://www.goldtree.co.za/blog kept being delayed as I was never satisfied until I lost my cool and just posted it. Now its getting some descent traffic and I am loving it :)

  2. Great advice. There’s so much information out there it can easily be overwhelming to just keep on reading more instead of just sitting down and writing!
    Although I have yet to try it myself, I would think there are also some benefits of starting out in a community like Blogger or WordPress.com since you have a built-in community. Thanks for the tips.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      I wouldn’t really rely too much on the community over at wordpress.com or blogger. If you like more community participation, then tumblr would be a good choice for you.

      The point is, you need to get started. That’s what matters.

      Cheers.

  3. Dean says:

    Ardarsh

    Hi thank you for that thoughtful article. I especially relate to #2. I am an avid reader and sometimes fall into the trap of trying to be come an expert by reading as much as I can. Needed to stop that and…just get on with it!

    Thanks, again!
    Dean

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Dean,

      Glad you are realizing the facts now. Don’t get caught on consuming too much information. Just go do it!

      P.S: You got my name wrong. It’s Adarsh. Cheers

  4. Robert Dut says:

    Great post, and I really strongly identify with the “just do it” tone and message.

    I was a long-time trade journalist who “wished” for a couple of years to go out on my own as an independent blogger covering the same niche I was writing about as a staffer. But I just kept “wish”ing until my wish was granted by a change in ownership for my publication that left me without a job.

    18 months later, I “wish” I had made the decision to make the jump a lot sooner!

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Robert,

      Sometimes our wishes come true when we are forced to take up our wish. :) But I am glad that you could make your wish come true.

      Cheers man.

  5. I started blogging about 4 months ago and was fearful I would out of material on my real estate blog. That’s not the case, my only complaint at this time is trying to find more readers.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      We often think the challenge is something and end up with other major challenges. I am glad that you did not wait for the perfect moment and went against your fear. That’s what makes someone a success.

      Have a good day Johnny.

  6. Ben says:

    Really nice post, and very helpful, especially for guys like me who are new to blogging. I believe a having the right mentality is #1. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  7. mario monk says:

    Is it ‘I wish I had money for hosting and domain’ true? I mean, domain name costs like 10 usd annually, and hosting that satisfies starter from 5 bucks per month. Even I can afford it, despite the fact I’m from eastern Europe.

    I thing it’s not a wish. It’s an excuse.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      You might be slightly mistaken Mario.

      The thing is, 100$ for a year might not be a big deal for you. But for some people in other parts of the world (India included), it’s a very big deal. Do you know that there are people who work for less than 100$ a month in IT firm in India? Sad, but true.

  8. Rachel says:

    I just revamped my blog and started writing on it more seriously. I’ve been learning all this as I’ve gone. Thanks for reassuring me that my thoughts on just diving in are good!

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Rachel,

      It always pays to have a good clean design for a professional blog. You are on the right track. Keep blogging!

  9. Hi Adarsh,
    Great motivation, this make me remember that I do wishing for long time enough, but not today. Anyway, you can try some free hosting out there (Just googling :) ) I use those free service at the very first time learning how to host my site.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Free hosting is good when you have a hobby site or a personal blog. Not good for business though. But the most important thing is to get started.

      Thanks for sharing your suggestions Tiyo.

  10. lnled4 says:

    “Do you know what’s stopping you from becoming the most sought after blogger in your niche? You!”

    No. I get the whole “self-empowerment” stuff spammed all over the blogging/internet marketing universe, but potential bloggers need to face reality.

    The reality is that blogging has taken a big hit with the rise of social media.

    The reality is that blogging is for most people a terrible way to make money.

    The reality is that even if a person puts in 200% effort, she will likely make less than minimum wage at blogging.

    The reality is that social media marketing mechanisms like twitter have become spammy, one-way streets with everyone and their mother preaching seo and internet marketing and blogging and churning out mindless “7 tips on this” and “5 tips on that” articles that are now a dime a dozen.

    The reality is that the standards are MUCH higher for blogging than before. Web design, social media marketing, SEO, a million and one apps/tools, and so on means that 99.9% of potential bloggers are doomed to failure because it takes a ridiculous amount of time to get any little bit of success – and by little bit of success I mean half the minimum wage, which can be earned at a stint at McDondalds.

    Look, I’m all about ambition and doing one’s own thing. But to say the problem is “you” rather than to acknowledge how incredibly hostile the environment is now for potential bloggers – this is isn’t 2006 anymore – is misleading. While “you” is a factor, the other factors should be acknowledged also.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      lnled4,

      I can understand your frustration. I don’t say that it’s easy to just start a blog and be a success instantly. It never was. Even in 2005 you need to constantly put out content. It’s just that people link out less these days and competition is more.

      But, here is the brighter side.

      There are more blogs than ever to guest post on (Back in 2006 and all there was very few such opportunities). There are more opportunities to drive traffic to your blog (social media). You can bank on the expertise and learn from the mistake of other bloggers who started early.Even the cost of entry into blogging is lesser than ever.

      Saying that the market is tough is just plain wrong.

      I agree that it’s not easy to make money. But a blog should not be seen as a money making opportunity. It should be seen as a medium to get more opportunities and brand yourself.

      Cheers.

  11. Harriet says:

    Just start!! I spent all of last year reading about blogs & the best way to get going but was always fearful no one would like mine/ not read it if I started one. This year I finally just did it & am loving it much more than I could have ever thought, you can check it out here- http://www.harrietkempton.com
    You’ve just got to get over your fear & jump in otherwise like you say, you’ll always be wishing…

    Thanks for a great article!!

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      You are on the right track Harriet. Conquering your fear is the #1 obstacle most people have to face. Even if you are not perfect, you can always improve yourself later. But the important thing is to get started.

  12. figuretech says:

    I think ‘i wish’ has been my problem all the time-i have gotten some tips on becoming a successful blogger

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      If you overcome that mentality, I can assure you that you have already made a significant improvemet in your chances of being successful.

  13. The “consuming too much information” part is my biggest struggle. I feel like if I don’t jump on the scene with an award-winner that follows every tip in the book I’ve somehow missed the mark. I have recently gotten over that mentality (to an extent) and have begun creating my blog. No one enters the internet mistake-free, so everyone has to let go of the idea that they will be the first. It is a big game of trial and error. No one goes unscathed. I’ve already returned more products than I’ve purchased and undone more than I’ve accomplished. It’s a part of it and makes the success that much more rewarding when you reach it. Thanks for the information and the motivation to keep trudging on.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Christelle,

      I have been in your shoes and I completely understand your situation. I’m extremely glad that you finally decided to say to yourself that enough is enough and it’s time to get your feet wet.

      Good luck with blogging!

  14. Kenny Fabre says:

    Adarsh

    I think you are right people need to stop procrastinating and start their blog

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Kenny,

      Procrastination is a major enemy for everyone. Not just bloggers. And yes, we should stop procrastinating and focus more on what we need to do. I have found the book, Art of War to be helpful in this regard.

      Thanks for the comment.

  15. Richard Ng says:

    Adarsh, a well written tips for newbie blogger, I am already way past the “I wish” phase (for 1 year plus) and now owning a few blogs covering self development, entertainment and internet marketing niches.

    I totally agree with you on the “information overload” part, most bloggers (including myself) tends to read “too much” and thus has side-effect of leaving lesser time for the actual work aka blogging/writing.

    One thing that I would like to add is that blogging is a long term venture and in order to sustain it, we need to blog about what we are passionate about, thus, all newbie blogger should choose the topic of their passion to write about in their very first blog.

    Cheers!

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Richard,

      Great to know that you have overcome the I wish mentality.

      You are right in a way when you say that we have to blog about our passion. I dont agree 100% to it because if you want to have a business and if your true passion has no real audience, it doesn’t make sense to go with passion alone.

      Cheers.

  16. Dzulhelmee says:

    Hi Adarsh

    For me the ‘I wish’ mentality is just an excuse. An excuse for being lazy. I started my blog and maintained it for the cost of 10USD which is the cost of my domain.
    I couldn’t afford the monthly hosting so I choose the Blogger platform. I started being seriously involve in blogging just in September 2011 nearly 6 month ago. I managed to get a ranking of 2.2mil in Alexa and it is truly self satisfactory.Although quite new, I’m glad and quite proud of what have I done with it and what my blog have achieved.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      You are doing great Dzulhelmee.

      One point I would want to stress is that you shouldn’t stress on the Alexa rankings. For the most part, Alexa rankings are pretty useless.

      Have a great day.

  17. Kill #2 Adarsh to kill the plaguing fear which destroys ambition. Do, or do not, as Yoda says. Stop collecting information, start using the information you have. Information overload is a subtle but powerful fear-based practice. Get going now. Thanks for sharing.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Ryan,

      Your comment made me laugh :)

      Just do it as Nike says!

  18. Carlos Ramos says:

    Great post!
    Sometimes I find myself stuck at the “I need more info for this”. I also identify myself with the amount of information left alone, many books I have not read yet, thinking in all I have to read before I can make a post.

    Thanks for getting me back on track, Adarsh.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Sometimes getting more info can be good. However there should be a fine line between obsessing over more information and collecting just the right amount of information to get started.

  19. Will Mullen says:

    Really enjoyed the blog. Great points and I agree that people need to realize the importance of blogging

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Will,

      Blogging is important. But if it does not make business sense (when you run a business), you are better off without it.

  20. Klarke H says:

    Excellent article and what you said about getting to it and taking action is 100% true. Most people think about blogging and just like you did, buy all types of useless e-books and other stuff, but they never get to it and start blogging..

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Klarke,

      Buying information is useful. It’s just that too much information is bad. Thanks for sharing your insights.

  21. Venkat says:

    Nice Post Adarsh… Some great points to learn. Thanks.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Venkat,

      Thank you for your kind words. Much appreciated.

      Cheers.

  22. S M Khan says:

    The blog post has really touched my senses and has woken me up after hibernation of 6 months to continue my blogging again as was not able to focus due to heart break.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Wow. I’m glad that I could motivate you further. Good luck with your blogging buddy.

  23. I have to agree. If you never get going then you will never get anywhere. Its a bit similar to writing the first line of a post. Once its over the rest of it just falls into place

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Yes. Once we start doing it, we simply find the momentum to go on. Thanks for your comment John.

  24. The one mistake first time bloggers do is wanting to be just like their blogging idols.
    It’s okay to want the same success and and the same popularity as Darren, but let’s face it- he’s been doing this for many, many years. When I started (even now) I wished to be as professional as the top dogs in blogging. But realizing that it will eventually come over time with hard work and persistence is what saves us from the constant frustration.
    Great article with a lot of great advises.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Slavko,

      You are right in that many people want to replicate the success of others. While it’s good to have strong goals, we should always play to our strengths. Once we start growing, we can always ramp up. Great comment man.

      Cheers.

  25. Gabriel says:

    Thanks for this. I spent so long trying to make my blog ‘something’ that I didn’t get started. Now that I have started, I am hooked. I love writing it and getting comments from people who read (mostly friends and family, but I’m ok with that ;) and that’s really something :))

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Gabriel,

      Congratulations on getting started. You are half way to being successful. Keep up the momentum and the rewards shall be yours.

  26. Surminga says:

    Hey, great motivational tips here, having a positive mentality is the best route to going into any activity.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Surminga,

      True. Positive mentality is absolutely essential when we go into blogging. Our thoughts often times reflect on our posts.

      Glad you could stop by for a comment.

  27. Sunny says:

    What a advise. Ya i like I wish, Your point but if we don’t wish it will never be possible in our life first wish and then do hard work always works. Yes its true competition is going go on go on. Even i can’t handle that as i was in the position before.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Wishing is good. However, it turns bad when we never take action other than wishing and wishing. Most people are unaware (me including) to when actually to stop wishing for and start acting. So better not to wish or wish minimum and do maximum.

      Nice comment Sunny.

  28. christopher says:

    You are right Adarsh,I am also agree with you.Blogging is so important for Business,if you should have concern about your honesty.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Christopher,

      Not sure how honestly fits into this, but yeah you are right. Blogging is essential for business if their focus is on getting highly targeted traffic.

  29. Jason Danzi says:

    One of my favorite phrases when it comes to writing and it certainly applies to this topic, I think, is: “Don’t get it right, get it written”

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Jason,

      Awesome share man. That almost sums up everything about writing. Just do it. Don’t wait for all ideas to come in, have them structured in your head. It helps to get started and then the flow automatically comes.

  30. David says:

    Adarsh,

    I plead guilty to all of the things you wrote in this post! I started a blog over a year ago with great enthusiasm only to let it languish with a single post. I have an audience and I have something to say, yet I wanted it to be perfect from the start and so I simply didn’t do anything until I felt it could be. Finally I said, Just Do It and let it grow as my abilities grow. That has made all the difference and rekindled my enthusiasm, thanks.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      David,

      That was a great story you shared with us. Personal stories like these are always inspirational. The best part is that you are finally motivated to do it again. Don’t stop. Keep pushing man.

  31. Karun says:

    Hi Adarsh, a refreshing blog post – thank you for that. It takes action to succeed in today’s online scenario and people who think too much – do not do much, so getting into action and having an action plan is really a necessity to see real results that top bloggers get.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Karun,

      You are right about people who think too much. While success can be achieved by thinking thoroughly, what good is long time thinking if you actually don’t do anything with it?

      Thanks for the comment buddy.

  32. Leslie says:

    Thank you, thank you! This is exactly what I needed to hear. Rule #3 hit especially close to home b/c I’m a perfectionist. I have to realize that everything can’t be perfect from the beginning.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Leslie,

      Never try to become a perfectionist. I learned it the hard way. It always better to have a half baked cake than no cake at all in my opinion :)

  33. It does take time and action to see successful results.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      There is no escaping spending time even though you can afford not to spend cash.

  34. Ocha says:

    I think one of my issues is I get an idea, act on it and somewhere in midstream, change it. Maybe the layout or the colors and sometimes even the direction. I might just be getting to the point where I’m spending less time worrying about the techie stuff and starting to focus on where I need to go with things.

    Maybe this post is the push.

    Thanks.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      Ocha,

      I can relate to that. Glad I could push you towards what really matters.

      Cheers.

  35. James Witter says:

    awesome …awesome content and also great value….thanks for the great article…..i needed the article to help me do what i need to do.

    • Adarsh Thampy says:

      James,

      I am glad I could be a source of inspiration for you. it really cheers us up when we hear such things. Good luck man.

  36. Almost every blogger had the starting trouble. Never written, can I write, what about grammar and language, will I be ridiculed, unlike conversation I cannot change the topic midway and escape, once published and seen that’s it. Finally one day, I said I dont care what others think I am writing and started writing. Trust, technology changes, self improvements,what ever i felt like I wrote. Though there have been gaps in my postings, I have a few good reviews and more than 5000 strikes. No big deal but if I can do it so can you. Any body sitting on the edge just jump into the water, you will be surprised to know you can swim. It is an exhilarating experience. Visit my blog, it will inspire you, what, if this guy can write, so can I. Do it

  37. Ashwin says:

    Thank you Adarsh. Really loved the second point of stop learning and start doing. I believe that really is a big hurdle for blogging. I’ve always wanted to be perfect as soon as I started, and so I wanted to compare and then choose the best blogging platform, best style of writing, best topics to write about etc.. This deciding “the best”, is a big hindrance which I’m finding really difficult to overcome. Hope you’re words helps me kick start the blog which “I always wished for”…

  38. Judy Belmont says:

    Excellent ideas and very much appreciated – you set a good example of high quality content! It inspired me more to increase my guest blogging on sites for better visibility.

  39. Tommy Walker says:

    Simple. But powerful.

    I’d like to add too, you don’t Need to have all of the fancy plugins, you don’t need to have an opt-in, you don’t neeeed to spend a ton of time doing keyword research, you don’t neeeed to do anything but write.

    At first anyways.

    And really, you don’t neeed your own blog. Jon Morrow, one of my favorite online writers has done a wonderful job for himself in the online marketing space for the past several years, and he’s only just recently started his own blog. and he launched with a list of over 10,000 people (if I’m not mistaken)

    But what you need to do is write. Add value to the space, and write.

  40. Long says:

    I think the morale to this story was, “Just get out there and do it!” Great advice. I spent a great deal of time debating whether I should start blogging or not. That time would have been better spent just learning how to do it and gaining experience.

    I am constantly “wishing” to be as successful as other high profile bloggers and dealing with the ebbs and flows of motivation. Besides that, time management has become a huge issue for me. Spending too much time researching and evaluating other ideas, instead of focusing on making my current projects better, has spread me too thin.

    Thanks for the coaching. I’ll be working on my content : )

  41. This is right where I was, and right where I am! I’ve been putting together my new blog/website for a little over a month now. It goes public April 2nd! Would love some feedback! :-)

    http://www.suzannebroadhurst.com

    (I did go non-free Word Press though … and love it!)

  42. Eddie says:

    This post was excellent. I can’t tell you how much time is consumed by daydreaming and “I wish”-ing. This was much needed for me. Thanks so much!