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August 2018 Reflection Point: 15 Lessons Learned, 12 Quotes, 2 New Things, & Goal Updates

We are two-thirds of the way through 2018 and we have another baby coming any minute now. In this update, I'll share progress on my second book, blogging, a freelancing financial milestone, lessons learned, notable, quotes, and updates on my 2018 goals. Let's get at it. 

Progress on My Second Book

I'm grateful to report that I've finished my third editing pass on my second book project. While editing pass four is next up, the book project has slowed down as I shift focus on finishing my blogging goal for the year, and us having our fifth child.

I've also realized there is more to include in the book for small business owners from my past two months of blog writing, and the impending blog posts lined up for the remainder of the year. After arriving at 400 articles, I'll slow down my blogging efforts to move the book project forward faster.

Blogging Progress

Organic Website traffic report graphic over time

In the previous thirteen months, I've published 180 articles here on the site. This has almost doubled the number of articles I had before starting last year's weekday blogging challengeAn organic traffic increase kicked into gear February of this year and has not let up since (as seen in the graph above).

Building a larger digital footprint is a major driver of blogging aggressively, and now I'm seeing real progress from this steady work. This traction provides an opportunity to test effective ways to monetize my efforts on the blog with my own book on freelancing, and by promoting affiliates. My goal is to diversify my income from freelancing exclusively, to a combination of freelancing and writing revenue. I'm not there yet, but I see light on the horizon.

Freelancing Financial Milestone

At the beginning of 2014, I ended my marketing business and launched into freelancing. Now four years, five months into this endeavor, I stumbled into a milestone of total earnings. For my freelancing business, I've earned a total of $500k (minus expenses). While it took several years, it's still pretty cool to pass the half-million dollar mark. How much money have you earned in the past five years?

Kids Started School & We'll Have A New Baby Any Day Now

Our two older children began school this past month and baby number five could come any day in the next two weeks. With these two factors at play, it's likely to disrupt my work and blogging efforts as I'll be required to step in and up. If you experience a pause on my blogging efforts here, you'll know why :-) 

15 Lessons Learned

Below I shared a variety of things I've learned over the past month to provide a place for me to capture them and for you to benefit. 
  1. There is limited effectiveness for how laws affect people's behavior.
  2. I've discovered a label for my role working with clients. A Virtual Chief Growth Officer. A CGO harmonizes sales, marketing, technology, and operations to grow a business.
  3. Digital trafficked real estate is a powerful way to drive a message and encourage activity.
  4. It's important to use all the little opportunities to teach our children how to do things in life. This includes things we don't expect them to do as kids and things they don't believe they can do.
  5. When presenting arguments, it super important to explore both sides. Debates are a great venue for this.
  6. As much as we might not like them, dissenting voices are hugely important for our own growth and making wise decisions.
  7. Jesus is not just our savior, but our Lord. And as our Lord, the buck stops with him when it comes to what we oversee in our work and life. 
  8. When we effectively and proactively manage our life and work well, we shrink the amount of stress we face. By doing this, we're more equipped to handle it when it does come our way.
  9. My blog and my work are geared towards helping other grow. Grow themselves, their faith, their business, and their community.
  10. To become great at something teach it. Everything else you'll need to do will happen organically as you wrestle with teaching well.
  11. What if parents funded their children's startup company instead of a college degree? 
  12. When struggling to finish a blog post, try inverting it and see what happens. I did this with a blog post last month and it empowered me to finish the article.
  13. Embracing reality as it is (not how we want it to be) allows ut to leverage how it works to progress forward.
  14. We Americans easily protest what’s happening on the national scale while completely neglecting to do anything on the local scale. 
  15. Freelancers can either be a seed (contributing forward) or a weed (an unwanted intrusion).

12 Notable Quotes

The following memorable quotes were collected over the past month for me to reference and you to benefit.
  1. “A failure is a man who has blundered but is not able to cash in on the experience.” - Elbert Hubbard
  2. "Complaining is not a strategy" - anonymous
  3. “Don’t wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Weak men wait for opportunities; great men make them.” — Orison Swett Marden
  4. “Until you admit there is a problem, you can’t begin to solve it.” — John McCormack
  5. “When we don’t know who to believe, care for children.“ - Unknown Senior Bishop
  6. "The vital relationship which the Christian has to the Bible is not that he worships the letter, but that the Holy Spirit makes the words of the Bible spirit and life to him." - Oswald Chambers
  7. "Choosing to suffer means that there must be something wrong with you, but choosing God’s will— even if it means you will suffer— is something very different." - Oswald Chambers
  8. "When a man’s heart is right with God the mysterious utterances of the Bible are spirit and life to him. Spiritual truth is discernible only to a pure heart, not to a keen intellect. It is not a question of profundity of intellect, but of purity of heart." - Oswald Chambers
  9. "For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” - Zephaniah
  10. "Crises reveal character. When we are put to the test the hidden resources of our character are revealed exactly." - Oswald Chambers
  11. "Faith must be tested, because it can only become your intimate possession through conflict." - Oswald Chambers
  12. “The person who asks the questions controls the conversation.” - Marvin Marshall

2 New Things

The following five things were interesting and helpful resources. I'm passing on what I found valuable.

2018 Goals Progress Report

Below is the monthly update on my goals set for 2018. I've simplified this section to make it more visual and less wordy using the color zone system. Red is poor, yellow is mediocre or troubling, and green is stellar/on track. 

Active Goals

23 of 27
Daily Utmost & Bible Verse
4 of 19
Evening Kiddo Snuggle Time
Highly Engaged
Men's Community Engagement
374 of 400
400 Published Articles
100% Finished
Payoff Kia Sedona Auto Loan
Died Twice
Habitica Habit Management & Todos
On 4th Editing Pass
Finish Writing 2nd Book
83.75 Fewer Hours
Sustain 2017 Income, Fewer Hours
1 of 8
One Mile, Eight Times/Month
Greeting Bi-Weekly
Gwinnett Church Volunteering
Baby Impending
Canceled: Read Book With Wife

A Roundup of New Published Blogs 

If you missed any, here is a list of all new blog posts published this past month.

Hero Photo by An Tran on Unsplash

Monthly Reflection Point

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