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Where's the Shortcut?

Aug 17, 2007
One of the most common illusions people who want to work at home have about working at home is that it's easy. Somehow a home business is supposed to generate far more money than a traditional job while leaving time to play with the kids and keep a perfect house.

You see that mindset all the time in people posting on forums asking about this opportunity or that. They want to replace their income from working outside the home in an amazingly short period of time.

If you're one of the people who still has that expectation, stop it. It probably won't happen. Most of the people who report making big money working at home in virtually no time have some kind of experience or prior customer lists to help them out. Not all, but the exceptions are few and far between. You cannot plan your work at home career on being an exception.

Can you make a great living working from home? Yes. Will you definitely make a great living? Sorry. There are no guarantees. You can't even be sure of making an adequate living. Just as with brick & mortar businesses, most businesses from home will fail. Of those that make it, most will take a few years before they become profitable.

You want a shortcut? Sorry, can't give you one.

You may hear people talk about earning money in their sleep, but the reality is that they put in a lot of effort while awake. Sleeping has nothing to do with making money. The orders that make you money in a home business may come in at any time, but when you're serious about your business, you'll know exactly how you came to earn it. Saying you earned money while you slept is a form of bragging, not a business model.

Working at home is hard work. In fact, it is often harder than working outside the home. There are more distractions in many cases, and people often don't understand that you are working, not goofing off on the computer. There's the expectation that you'll do more around the house in a lot of cases as well.

No matter what kind of home business you choose, you will have to learn to run it professionally. You will have to deal with questions about your product or service. You will have to learn as much as you can about the various kinds of marketing you will use. You might even decide to create your own website. And while you could hire someone to do many of these things for you, many home business owners simply don't have that in the budget.

You will have to deal with ups and downs in your business. One month you might make twice what you did in your old job while the next hardly anything will come in. Stability is not guaranteed. The best advice I can offer for those hard times is "Don't Quit."

You will hear people promising shortcuts all the time. They might tell you that you can earn thousands with a particular kind of website or by buying a particular list. Before you engage in any new strategy, think about whether it is good for your business in the long run. Any tactic that risks the future of your business is not worthwhile. And if the tactic happens to break the law, you could be in serious trouble. Buying email lists has been a very risky idea ever since CAN-SPAM went into effect.

If you want to work at home, get started now! Success won't come easily, but if you try you might just find it. Running a home business you love is a lot of work but when you're content in your business that won't matter. You can earn good money from home but you have to be realistic about how you do it.
About the Author
Stephanie Foster runs http://www.homewiththekids.com/ and has been a work at home mom for five years. She offers more advice on successfully working at home at her website.
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