Lies, Turning points, failure & motivation

Success & FailureI would say it takes a certain kind of person to become self employed, to make your own wage you need more than a bit of motivation and often there is a key moment that changes the direction you take in your working life to spur you on into action. Just wanting to earn money from the internet and stay at home is not motivation enough nor will it be enough to take you through the highs and lows of earning your own full time wage and the stress and strain that it can bring.

Of my 4 close friends 2 of us are extremely alike and the other 2 are the opposite, Ian and I gamble, compete and put winning and competing high on our list of traits while the other two are much more laid back, relaxed and less competitive and happily admit they prefer the security of work, full time jobs & employment. Looking back I don’t think it is any surprise that Ian and I are now both self employed, we both have the competitive edge it takes to become successful. Not that I’m dissing employment for those that it suits, we all seek different paths.

Turning Point
For me though there was a defining moment, a moment when I realised that I could never work for other people, I left school at 17 to train and work as an accountant and for 3 years I did day release to study for exams while working for a local accounts firm preparing and auditing accounts. Not much job satisfaction but I always enjoyed numbers and found it a strong point that was easy for me to apply myself to, that was until I was told that while I was earning £3.50 ($7) per hour, the clients who’s books I worked on were being charged £15 ($30) per hour, this was just over 13 years ago.

Now my boss had to pay for some heating/lighting and provide me with some paper/calculator & pencils but I was astounded that someone could profit to that extent on the back of my efforts, it was a turning point for me and when I look back it is a very clear & vivid point in my life where I decided I could not in good conscience allow myself to line the pockets of others for my hard work and toil.

MotivationLies & Motivation
There are two sayings that I keep coming across that I hate hearing, the first one being one you tend to hear from only really rich people, “It’s not about the money” or “ money doesn’t bring happiness” or “you can’t do it for the money”. Maybe I’m just materialistic but it’s all about the money! Only rich people can say it’s not about the money, I have never had any illusions that my purpose is to somehow do it for the love or for fun or to add something to the world, it helps greatly that I enjoy what I do and is possibly a key to success, but it is and always has been about the money for me, my motivation is to provide a secure and hopefully decent income to keep my family in a good standard of living. If I ever start saying it’s not about the money you know I’m far too well off 😉

The other saying on the flip side that annoys me is “your lucky”. People who are not so well of and have not succeeded or excelled tend to prefer the “your lucky” line. That’s complete crap as well, I have a string of failures behind me on my way to where I am now, you could say I’m either unlucky, stupid or just resilient!

  • Trainee accountant – 3 years but couldn’t stand making someone else rich. Failed.
  • Assistant manager of local gardening company – Didn’t get opportunity I was promised and didn’t have much interest – Failed.
  • Decided to start up self employed – Mobile car tuning & servicing (took a loan & didn’t know really what I was doing) and ended up with a first year loss of £900. Failed.
  • Sold double glazing (self employed) – could do it ok but didn’t enjoy it and knew it wasn’t my calling. Failed.

I also tried all those homeworking scams, nowadays you may go searching for terms like make money online but in the UK before the internet was so prominent I used to buy a magazine called ‘Exchange & Mart’ which had all those Amway, Kleeneze, MLM, franchise deals and cons like send us £45 processing fee and you could earn £200 per week making small car alarms working from home 🙂 I probably looked into most of them, in fact I remember a friend coming round to ask my advice on one of those scams

Stuff envelopes working from home and earn £200+, anyone can do it, just send us £30 application fee

See, he knew I would have already looked into something like that and I had and told him to save his money, you see it wasn’t luck, it’s just that I’ve tried everything else and I always knew I must be good at something!  I was always waiting to find something like the internet to come along and the opportunities that it could present, I am neither extremely rich nor extremely lucky, but I do have motivation and a great turning point that set me on this path, I should also add I have always had the support of my wife which has probably made the difference as most other people would have given up on me some time ago 🙂

About Scott Jones

Scott hails from the north east of Scotland and started earning online at the end of 2000 building websites for local businesses during which time he won an award from Lord Alan Sugar for Excellence in Enterprise. After having quite a bit of success with domaining Scott mainly runs educational evergreen websites which generate over 3 million visitors per month but is always on the lookout for a fresh thinking out of the box way to turn a buck. Follow on Twitter.


  1. I must add one thing about that bit you mentioned that “its all about the money”.

    If one starts following money, money runs away, but if you have the knowledge, will and the determination, money follows you.

  2. I have worked for myself near all my working life going from one small business to the next never realy been very successfull but allways doing ok ocasionaly working for others but allways in those types of jobs one can start or leave at any time knowing you can find another tomorow. Its only the last few years I have what one calls a real job. Like most things to date my working life has also been done backto front at 16 I had employees God only knows how but I did
    At 40 I started in a company earning less than minimum wage go figure.

    The statement “its all about the money” has a lot of truth, but after a lot of reflection these last few years I prefer “Money = Freedom” The more you have the freeer you become.

    • I’g agree with that Neale, the freedom and flexibility is a massive benefit for me of both earning a good income and being self employed working from home.

  3. For me money is a very important part but freedom more so. From a very early age I wanted to run my own businesses, my first venture was a magic show when I was about 7 and I remember selling cups of water for 1p each and when my mother found out she made me give the money back. My most recent turning point was when I spoke to myex-manager who wanted to retire but couldn’t afford to without selling his house and downsizing. So I could keep working there and learn from him, err no thanks.

  4. I turned Bovb ajob week into a thriving Business at a very early age 🙂

  5. I too want to give up working for the man, and working only for myself.

    I think that it takes a while to find your true calling. I’ve been flailing away with a few different ventures, and none have yet provided me with the opportunity to leave my full time job for good.

    Persistence, while tough to maintain at times, is hopefully the key 🙂

  6. So far I have had a mixture of jobs and being self-employed. I work full-time for a while and then leave to be self-employed for a while, then get another job etc. That may sound strange but I like aspects of both: when self-employed you’re your own boss, but having a job gives you a fixed weekly income and teaches me a lot about how other people work and gives me skills that I can then utilize when I’m working for myself again.

  7. Before I went self employed I was probably earning about the same as I am now, enough to pay the mortgage and give my little girl a good life, but I hated the work even though it was an easier life working for someone else. Although I enjoy the flexibility of not having set hours.

    Now I’ve got big plans which will hopefully see my income rise way above what I could have earned, and will give me that extra money to go on nice holidays and most importantly buy lots of nice cars!

  8. Another fine post – my two additional cents.

    Money can’t buy happiness, but it sure can make it easier.

    Luck plays a role … but many people “make” their own luck via hard work, etc.

  9. Excellent thought provoking post.

    This pretty much somes up my confusion and turmoil at the moment being self-employed (and stressed).

    I, like your two friends am an extremely laid-back, relaxed and non-competitive individual. But on the same token, I hate lining the pockets of others on my hard work.

    I take pride in my own work and enjoy being creative, yet I lack the strong entreprenurial drive to go out and make my own luck.

    So I find myself stuck on the fence looking for inspiration….

  10. Thanks for the bit of background. I have been a slave to the 6/30 for years and have yet to effectively break free. I am always surprised when a posting is placed on craigslist how in a matter of 3 days you can get 100 applicants willing to work for just over min wage. Seems there is a huge opportunity to put the pieces together. Scary to take the first step though.

  11. Even if you feel that it’s all about money for you, then why did you write this post? 😉

    You didn’t earn much money with it.

    You could have written a post on your Tatoo site or any other site, slapped some Adsense on it and you would be earning more money than now.

    I wrote an article on this topic recently so feel free to check it out and let me know what you think:

    Why Money is Only One Third of Happiness

    • Indeed Tomaz, but if I didn’t have money from my successful online ventures would I still have written this post?

      Making money online means that I can write things on this blog for no payback or profit.

  12. Wow! Nice epic post. Thanks for the interesting facts.

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