5 lessons I've learned in 5 years on BHW - anniversary

joseph15

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So somehow, it's already been 5 years since I was just a newbie using Alex Becker's referral link to Hostgator signing up and making my first niche site ever. Time really does fly. It has been 5 years since I signed up to blackhatworld.com and the IM industry and I can't say it's been anything short of life-changing. So here are the biggest lessons I've learned in my time here.


1. There is life beyond IM/money/Business, and you need to nurture it. Really.

This is the biggest one by far. And some of you may think it sounds like 'cliche' or that you already know this, but some of you really don't, seriously. You don't want to fall into this trap. Life isn't like the movies. You don't just make a bunch of money like Jordan Belfort and have the greatest life you could ever imagine, that's not how things work. Don't think that you could sacrifice your physical health, mental health, social life, etc. and that one day you will make millions, and it will all be worth it. For 99% of us, that's not how things work. It takes years, blood, sweat and tears. Take care of yourself and work hard at the same time -- you might think it's stupid when people say "the best investment is in yourself" but it's damn true. Invest as much as you possibly can in yourself before anything else - whether that means a massage, therapy, a gym membership, yoga, --- whatever it may be, make sure that you are making yourself the best version of "you" that could possibly exist. That's what matters more than anything. You will make money and live the life you desire if you do this. It's literally in your best interest to do so --- both financially and emotionally. I repeat - do not think you can sacrifice your life and somehow things will improve for you. This isn't how things work in the real world. Don't do it, you will end up unfulfilled in every way imaginable. Stop worrying so much about money - they won't stop printing money. It will always be there for you to take. Those years on your life are limited though so make them count.



2. Creativity matters above all else in this industry

Look, we've seen dozens - if not hundreds of methods shared on this site. Some of them work while others don't. One thing remains true though and that is that creativity prevails above all else. You need to be creative and do things that others haven't done yet. At the very least, you need to TRY doing things haven't yet been done. Most of the time, the real juicy stuff doesn't get shared on this forum because quite frankly, it would be abused to death immediately. What that means for you is that you need to sit down and ask yourself where the money is at and how you can position yourself to be successful. Money is like a river of water, always flowing. You need to position yourself in such a place that you maximize the amount of money that is coming into your account --- ask yourself what makes people buy, what kind of questions have buyers' intent, and what has not yet been done, at least at a large scale. People think a $100 investment into a new idea is a big risk, yet they will spend that same $100 bill on something that is guaranteed to not make them richer at all. Don't do this. Invest as much as you can afford, and don't be stingy. This is one of the worst characteristics you can have. Being a little bit stingy on things that won't improve your life is fine - but it should never be done when it comes to things that can make you more money. You will have to try a lot of different things in order to become successful at this game. Very rarely will you be able to copy/paste a method shared on BHW and makes thousands of dollars from it. This isn't 2009 anymore; at any given moment you have hundreds or even thousands of people competing with you every single day on the same niches as you.



3. Invest, Invest, Invest

Whatever you can afford to invest, you should. People say that the internet market is 'saturated' or whatnot, but in my opinion--- we're just getting started. We haven't even seen the peak of what internet marketing will be one day in the future. Do NOT be stingy with your money when it comes to investing. It's very easy to save every penny you earn and some gurus might even tell you that this is the best course of action but it definitely isn't. The stock market and/or real estate is not going to make you rich unless you're already dealing with several million dollars, which doesn't apply to 99% of this forum. Invest in new websites. New ideas. New marketing campaigns. Even new link-building providers. This is a 'good' way to spend money and it will result in 1 of 2 outcomes: either you will know to continue spending money on this investment, or you will know that it hasn't worked so far. Either way, it's something you should view as a win. Certainly a better use of your hard-earned money than a piece of clothing, although that in itself can be viewed as an investment.

Ask yourself, is saving money going to get you rich? 99% of the time it won't. Either invest it, spend it, or save it. i've found that those who save every penny they earn are often the unhappiest, but of course this isn't a rule.


4. Diversify WAY more than whatever you're currently doing

Most of us aren't diversifying nearly as much as we should. Just because you have 2 sites in 2 different niches doesn't mean you are safe. There are people on this forum with DOZENS or even hundreds of different sites who still don't feel comfortable, and those guys (in my opinion) are the real smart ones. Never feel comfortable unless you have enough to live on indefinitely. Learn new methods. Always work on a new sites. Always learn a new technique of gaining traffic. Always spy on your competitors. We don't know what the future holds for us, so you should never feel comfortable just because the Google algorithm is serving you favourably at the time. The moment you take your foot off the gas pedal is the moment you begin to lose the game. Anxiety and worrying about the future is viewed as a bad thing when the reality is that those emotions are what have kept your ancestors alive, and those are the same emotions trying to keep you alive as well. Don't EVER get comfortable doing this because it is extremely fickle and your income could die overnight. Have confidence in yourself, but also maintain a level of paranoia to always keep you on the edge. Paranoia is a good thing and it is the reason you were even born.



5. Just Do It - Whatever it is

I've always been a big fan of Nike attire, but even more so lately just because of their slogan. It's pretty remarkable how just 3 words can mean so much. Just do it. Sometimes you need to sit down and really digest what that means --- For me, it means not thinking anymore. No more analyzing. No more calculations. Just jump and see where you land, easier said than done. Stop trying to put yourself on a perfect trajectory, that's never going to happen. You are human. Humans make mistakes, and sometimes they fall, other times they succeed. The more you jump, the better your odds will become that you will land where you desire. Don't doubt yourself, the fact that you have even found this forum puts you above 80% of the human population who has no idea whatsoever of how the internet works. Never worry about failure or making mistakes, those are the things that help you grow as a person and ironically - they are the things that would help you achieve your dreams of becoming successful and/or rich. If you are like most people, then you are probably your own biggest enemy. Don't do this - be your biggest supporter and lover. Encourage and love yourself in whatever you venture out on doing, and absolutely never doubt or discourage yourself from doing something that would make you happier or could help you become a more successful human being. If you are hesitant, or the type of person who hates themselves, you have already lost. This is something that needs to be corrected wayyyy before you worry about what IM venture you'll dive into next. You must have absolute, undeniable confidence in yourself in order to win at the highest level. Conquer your mind to conquer the world. Word to @v



I realized that I have been on this forum for several years now, visiting almost daily and haven't posted something to truly give back yet. And I also know that most people who read this won't genuinely take the advice and apply it, but if I can help even 1% of people to gain more insight into this industry, then I'll be happy. This is an industry that is always changing and the harsh truth is that those who were meant to make it; were going to achieve success with or without this post. It all starts with a burning hunger to win. When you have that burning hunger/desire, you will learn all of the lessons that you need to learn in order to become successful. You won't need a post on BHW to change your life. But if you're one of those people on the fence like I was, I hope that there is at least one lesson you can take away from this post.
 

joseph15

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3 and 4 are very very important. Especially in this unstable world of internet marketing.

yep, for me #3 took the longest to learn. Money is useless if it is not being used. There is no difference in lifestyle from $5,000 to $25,000 or even $50,000, so might as well invest or spend it. It's hard for people to let go but the money needs to be used or else it's being wasted. Especially in times like today when money is being printed like crazy.
 

Panther28

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The reason you don't endorse savings is that you don't have any?
 

joseph15

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The reason you don't endorse savings is that you don't have any?

nope, I think i have more than a lot of people, which is both a good and bad thing. Money needs to be put to work. At the end of the day it's just a number on a screen if it is not being used either to make your life better or make you more money. Putting all your money into a savings account is stupid in my opinion. At the very least you can put it into an investment portfolio and earn 6-10%, otherwise that cash is rotting.

Saving money and not using it all is dumb. Buy an apartment, build a website, buy links --- do something. Don't just stare at that number on the screen lol.
 

HustleTong

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Saving money and not using it all is dumb. Buy an apartment, build a website, buy links --- do something. Don't just stare at that number on the screen lol.
Exactly.
Each buck is a freedom fighter in your anarchy
In the long run, Only diversification can compensate for inflation
 

SRProfitKing

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Nailed it. Especially with number 1. We often forget to live and enjoy but those moments are what keep us on track
 

rashh

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WOW, I see that you have a strong experience in this industry (IM), really these are precious information. Thanks a lot. Money is what keeps business's wheel rolling.
 

Bleach17

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Work and work when the competition is sleeping.
 

GoldSmile

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Don't doubt yourself, the fact that you have even found this forum puts you above 80% of the human population who has no idea whatsoever of how the internet works

Love that :).
 

GoldSmile

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Good post mate.

What do you recommend reading/watching/listening for mindset/perspective change?
 

joseph15

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Good post mate.

What do you recommend reading/watching/listening for mindset/perspective change?

I have read almost all of the self-help books and watched many of the "biz" guys online, in general I recommend it if you are still new to the space and learning. What I can say is that no matter how much you watch, you still are the only person that can change you. So don't get into the trap of believing that your dream version is yourself is 'X' content away, i.e. - "if only I knew X, then I would have Y". You are enough as you are.

But I'll still tell you some of the few I watch and listen to - Jordan B Peterson, Robert Greene, Jocko Willink - (this guy for sure), Patrick Bet David are all good guys with seemingly little financial interest in this space.
 

GoldSmile

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I have read almost all of the self-help books and watched many of the "biz" guys online, in general I recommend it if you are still new to the space and learning. What I can say is that no matter how much you watch, you still are the only person that can change you. So don't get into the trap of believing that your dream version is yourself is 'X' content away, i.e. - "if only I knew X, then I would have Y". You are enough as you are.

But I'll still tell you some of the few I watch and listen to - Jordan B Peterson, Robert Greene, Jocko Willink - (this guy for sure), Patrick Bet David are all good guys with seemingly little financial interest in this space.

Well, for me after reading/watching a significant amount of this kind of content. I came to the realization that I don't need to read/watch more stuff. Just work. Work will get me there. But I also understand you need to consume these people every now and then, as they give you new areas to think about. And I personally like that. So I check them out.

Pretty cool to know we watch the same guys lol. I picked up Jocko's book for some reason. Very personal and touching. Have to read it again. Hell, might even read a chapter today.

Only Patrick missing from the list. Seen the guy, but judged him rather quickly. Will check it out again.

Thanks mate!
 

joseph15

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Well, for me after reading/watching a significant amount of this kind of content. I came to the realization that I don't need to read/watch more stuff. Just work. Work will get me there. But I also understand you need to consume these people every now and then, as they give you new areas to think about. And I personally like that. So I check them out.

Pretty cool to know we watch the same guys lol. I picked up Jocko's book for some reason. Very personal and touching. Have to read it again. Hell, might even read a chapter today.

Only Patrick missing from the list. Seen the guy, but judged him rather quickly. Will check it out again.

Thanks mate!

Yeah, Jocko is amazing. His advice is so unconventional for people in this space --- and you can't question his credibility at all. For example books will teach us that you always need lots of sleep to be effective, yet Jocko wakes up at 4 in the morning every day. By the time the rest of us wake up, he's already been through his entire workout regiment and pumped for the day. The guy has already lived a much different life than the others I put his name with. When he talks, I listen.

PBD isn't necessarily as profound or established as those other guys, can come off corny, but I like that he keeps it real. If I'm not mistaken he's also had a sit-down interview with each one of those guys - Jocko, Peterson, Greene. Great interviewer. But at the end of the day you are right - work alone will be enough to get you there.

Just because of the internet we already have more resources than 99% of those guys did in their beginning stages, so for those of us that don't make it in this day and age --- it probably won't be a matter of not having access to information. It's much more likely to be because of inaction, poor planning, or something of the sort
 
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