henry-david-thoreauIn Walden, Thoreau famously wrote:

“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation. From the desperate city you go into the desperate country, and have to console yourself with the bravery of minks and muskrats. A stereotyped but unconscious despair is concealed even under what are called the games and amusements of mankind. There is no play in them, for this comes after work. But it is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.”

I recently reread Walden. And since I’m so often thinking about websites and online marketing I couldn’t help but reframe the wisdom from some of his famous quotes to apply to doing business online today.

The truth is, most website owners are leading online lives of quiet desperation. They go from program to program to either console the uncertainty they have in their business or the doubt they have in themselves. Can you relate?

Yet, most of us have doubts. We have uncertainty – in ourselves and in business. Even those of us who are successful. It’s difficult not to when the present is filled with the precariousness of the future. The doubts and uncertainties are not a problem, really.

Yet a potential problem creeps in when our doubts and uncertainties cause us to resign our desires to have a successful website or coaching practice.

The truth is – you can do it. You can have a successful coaching, healing or professional practice. You can use your website to find new clients. And you don’t need to be techie nor spend gobs of time.

All that’s required is a little learning and a conscious, consistent effort in the direction of your goals. It’s likely you’ve already done some of this. So don’t despair if it’s not fully working. As Thoreau says in Walden:

“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.”

Same is true with your business. You have dreams and goals and have tried things already. But they’re likely not working because you’re just missing a few fundamental and foundational pieces. It’s the foundation that holds together and supports the walls of your castle. Without them you’re floating about getting nowhere. But with a foundation you can have a strong structure to move in the direction of success.

This takes time. It takes effort. It takes a bit of experimentation and trial and error. That can be scary. It can be exciting. Hopefully it’s both as healthy fear and excitement are compliments to each other. The great thing about a website is that it can be changed. Designs come and go. What isn’t working, can be replaced. And content can be updated easily and often; providing a freedom to move toward your dreams.

Business online – websites, marketing, social media, etc – these are tools that can aid your adventure of having the business you want and creating a lifestyle you crave.

As Thoreau concludes in Walden:

“I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”

What do you truly imagine your life can look like? How are you moving toward it? And what’s your quiet desperation that’s stopping you from getting there?

Love to hear your thoughts in the comment box. 

And remember, there’s alway help if you feel stuck.


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