Thursday, October 21, 2010

Learning From My Mistakes


Earlier this year we made a big decision. We decided it was time to explore our options as far as earning an income. While we are managing okay with our current cleaning business, we are not getting any younger and we are not sure just how long we can continue with our current workload. So we decided to branch out into the world of E-commerce: to see if we could make money by way of an online store.

Now I did what I thought was adequate research before I committed us to any particular path. But the truth is we were green as grass and had no idea what we were doing, which made us easy targets for the scammers. How can you possibly distinguish truth from fiction without any kind of yardstick against which to measure it?

Yes, I got scammed. I spent money on a couple of schemes which, despite hours of work and frustration, have never earned me a cent. In fact all I ended up with was an inbox full of spam and a string of phone calls from people trying to sign me up for even more fraudulent scams.

Thankfully I am, by nature, a very cautious person. Because of this the damage to our finances was limited and we still have one iron in the fire – an online store selling waterproof digital cameras, which could well turn out to be a viable business. But there was a period of time in which I was very angry with myself. How could I have been so stupid and gullible – to let myself be taken in like that? As if we can afford to throw money down the drain that way?

Yet, in the last few weeks as we have finally gotten our website up and running, I have had to revise my opinions. After all, without those earlier failed attempts, I wouldn’t have learned the basics of writing HTML codes, a knowledge which has come very much handy with this venture. And, without those previous attempts, I wouldn’t have known how to promote our site by submitting it to the various Search Engines. I wouldn’t have known the value of writing articles and blogs in order to get my name ‘out there’ on the Internet – to gain a small following that I can now invite to visit our new site.

In other words, my past mistakes are proving to be a very valuable tool for shaping my future opportunities at success.

Of course there is a lesson to be learned from this. I often find myself momentarily overwhelmed by a sense of regret when I think back over my past life and the many, very foolish mistakes I have made. If only I had done it all a little differently. If only I had thought a little harder and longer before I launched myself into the making of life changing decisions.

But the truth is that I did what I thought was right at the time. I really only learned the error of my ways afterwards – and then it was too late. All I could do was to take the things I learned from those mistakes and try to use that knowledge to go forward. Just like I’m doing now.

©Lyn Murphy 2010

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